Gastronomy and Life's Other Pleasures

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Posts tagged avocado

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Weekend eats: breakfast egg salad
I’ve been wanting to experiment with my weekend breakfast choices lately, so I did some browsing on marthastewart.com for some inspiration and came up with this delightful concoction: breakfast egg salad!
Ok, ok, so it is just egg salad eaten at breakfast, but it’s not your traditional egg salad.  The hard-boiled eggs are chopped and mixed with Dijon mustard (I used grainy) and lemon juice for a lighter, more tangy egg salad.  I added some chopped green onion because that’s how I like my egg salad.  Martha gives you the option of leaving out some of the yolks for a slightly healthier version of this recipe. 
I piled my egg salad on whole grain toast topped with sliced avocado and spinach and served it with some fresh chopped fruit and coffee. This was totally delicious!  I loved the use of Dijon mustard and lemon juice for a totally different flavoured egg salad.  It was ridiculously simple and quick to pull together and I’ll be making this often!  Click on my photo to link to the original recipe.

Weekend eats: breakfast egg salad

I’ve been wanting to experiment with my weekend breakfast choices lately, so I did some browsing on marthastewart.com for some inspiration and came up with this delightful concoction: breakfast egg salad!

Ok, ok, so it is just egg salad eaten at breakfast, but it’s not your traditional egg salad.  The hard-boiled eggs are chopped and mixed with Dijon mustard (I used grainy) and lemon juice for a lighter, more tangy egg salad.  I added some chopped green onion because that’s how I like my egg salad.  Martha gives you the option of leaving out some of the yolks for a slightly healthier version of this recipe. 

I piled my egg salad on whole grain toast topped with sliced avocado and spinach and served it with some fresh chopped fruit and coffee. This was totally delicious!  I loved the use of Dijon mustard and lemon juice for a totally different flavoured egg salad.  It was ridiculously simple and quick to pull together and I’ll be making this often!  Click on my photo to link to the original recipe.

Filed under food breakfast brunch eggs egg salad avocado spinach green onion recipe Marth Stewart Dijon mustard lemon lemon juice toast bread whole grain weekend relaxing quick easy simple

18 notes

Brunch at Navarra

Well, it was my birthday this past weekend.  As I get a little deeper into my early 30s, the more I dislike celebrating my birthday, but I guess that is to be expected.  I am getting old!

The good thing about my birthday though is the delicious eats! Friends know my penchant for good food, so I get to indulge a lot during my birthday time frame.

A Byward Market restaurant that I had been dying to try was Navarra, and I finally made it there for brunch with some friends one recent weekend.  I still have to make it there for dinner sometime, but that will have to be for another birthday or celebration. 

I started off my brunch with a perfect cappuccino, which was totally adorable with its delightful foam cap.  Next, we were treated to some in-house made chocolate chip scones (on the house), which were deliciously flaky and sweet.

I knew long before I set foot in Navarra for brunch that I would order their “huevos rancheros” (quotations marks are Navarra’s own).  Described as “poached eggs, chicharron, black bean tostada, serrano, spicy tomato sauce and goat cheese”, this was indeed an adventure for the tastebuds!  The tomato sauce had a definite spicy kick to it, and the eggs were soft and fluffy.  I loved all of the different textures in the dish: the crunchy chicharron (pork rinds), the silky serrano ham, the velvety black bean sauce.  My co-diners had the Mexican bricklayer scrambled eggs and the french toast, both of which also looked to die for!

I would love to return to Navarra for brunch sometime: the atmosphere was relaxed and the service was attentive without being overbearing.  Most importantly, the food was incredible! 

Filed under food breakfast brunch lunch Ottawa restaurant Navarra Byward Market huevos rancheros french toast serrano chicharron tostada avocado egg toast tomato sauce black bean

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Lunch at Freshii

I noticed Freshii a while back when I drove past it in a blur trying to focus on the lanes of traffic and cars around me while driving into the downtown core.  I didn’t think much of it until my sister mentioned the name, saying that it was a great spot for a quick, healthy lunch.  

During my sister’s recent visit, we took advantage of my day off and went to Freshii for lunch so that I could see what it was all about.  There are two locations in Ottawa, one on the University of Ottawa campus and one on Sparks Street.  We had parked on the university campus so my sister could attend a meeting so we ate at that location.

The interior is bright, and Freshii’s colour theme is quite apparent: white, bright emerald green and black.  There are menu boards displaying the myraid of options for their wraps, salads, burritos, soups and bowls.  I decided to stick with their menu boards for my first time, but they have another option: design your own _____ (wrap, salad, burrito, bowl or soup).  They provide little clipboards with pre-made forms that list all of the available ingredient options and prices for each choice.  Wow! You could literally go in and order something completely different every day of the week.  You might think that this is no different than say, Subway, but Freshii has even more toppings such as chopped beets, artichoke hearts, corn, edamame, green apple, chickpeas, celery, cabbage…and the list goes on!  Definitely not your average toppings.

So as I was saying, I decided to go with one of their menu board items, and I chose the Fiesta burrito, which is basically a heated wrap that comes stuffed with brown rice, cajun chicken, avocado, corn, black beans, diced tomato, cilantro, salsa and low-fat ranch dressing. It was fantastic!  A huge burrito that left me full for the rest of the day. I did feel the price was a tad steep at $7.99 plus tax, but it was a really big portion and the ingredients were all of excellent quality. 

I can’t wait to go back to try more of their menu board items (or even create my own).  I’m going to try to take the husband as I know he’ll love it, even though I know he’ll be totally overwhelmed by the choices! Have you been to a Freshii?  Any tips?  What is your favourite menu item?

Filed under food lunch restaurant Freshii wrap sandwich burrito Ottawa fiesta chicken avocado brown rice tomato salsa ranch cilantro beans corn review fresh fast

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Leftover Love - weeknight beef tacos
Using our leftover slow cooked beef, the husband and I whipped up some delicious beef soft tacos.  We didn’t change the original seasoning on the beef; instead, we sliced and stir fried some red bell pepper and onion and added some taco seasoning to give the veggies some flavour.  We piled all of that on taco shells from Lone Star (the husband loves their taco shells) with our favourite toppings to make an almost instant weeknight dinner!

Leftover Love - weeknight beef tacos

Using our leftover slow cooked beef, the husband and I whipped up some delicious beef soft tacos.  We didn’t change the original seasoning on the beef; instead, we sliced and stir fried some red bell pepper and onion and added some taco seasoning to give the veggies some flavour.  We piled all of that on taco shells from Lone Star (the husband loves their taco shells) with our favourite toppings to make an almost instant weeknight dinner!

Filed under food dinner supper leftovers beef taco soft Lone Star tortilla topping quick weeknight lettuce tomato cilantro sour cream salsa avocado

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Lunch at the Works Burger Bistro
What’s more fun than a Friday lunch with your work bff’s?  We went out to the Works Burger to celebrate a coworker’s last day before her mat leave this past Friday, and celebrate we did, with milkshakes all around!
I opted for the brand new (and limited time!) milkshake on the menu, the Maple “Sin-amon,” which is vanilla ice cream, a layer of maple syrup and cinnamon, another layer of vanilla ice cream and topped with crumbled maple cookies.  It immediately jumped to the top of my all-time favourite milkshakes list!  
For my lunch, I went with my usual, the avocado blt with chicken on a croissant. Perfection in every bite!  All in all, another amazing meal at the Works, and the service was on point as well - they did a fantastic job!

Lunch at the Works Burger Bistro

What’s more fun than a Friday lunch with your work bff’s?  We went out to the Works Burger to celebrate a coworker’s last day before her mat leave this past Friday, and celebrate we did, with milkshakes all around!

I opted for the brand new (and limited time!) milkshake on the menu, the Maple “Sin-amon,” which is vanilla ice cream, a layer of maple syrup and cinnamon, another layer of vanilla ice cream and topped with crumbled maple cookies.  It immediately jumped to the top of my all-time favourite milkshakes list!  

For my lunch, I went with my usual, the avocado blt with chicken on a croissant. Perfection in every bite!  All in all, another amazing meal at the Works, and the service was on point as well - they did a fantastic job!

Filed under food sandwich blt bacon avocado croissant Works Burger Ottawa milkshake maple cinnamon vanilla restaurant review lunch

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Brunch at Milestones
I had not been to a Milestones in quite some time when my bff told me about their fantastic brunch menu.  Some friends met the fiancé and I for a post-new year’s gathering, and we enjoyed our brunch during a quiet Sunday morning at the restaurant.  The servers were great, and there were many other brunch items from which to choose (sadly, we all gobbled up our food so quickly that I only had time to snap a photo of mine before I dove in!)
I am a huge sucker for a good eggs benedict, so when I saw their grilled shrimp california benedict on the menu, I was sold.  Grilled jumbo shrimp, double-smoked bacon and house-made avocado salsa are served atop a toasted English muffin, all smothered in a generous dollop of their delightful hollandaise sauce.  The sides included breakfast potatoes topped with their Mediterranean salsa and some fresh fruit.  I also indulged in Milestones’ ultimate brunch bundle, which added to my meal a starter plate of fresh fruit with a mint dressing and my choice of mimosa: I opted for the raspberry mimosa, which was heavenly.
All of us really enjoyed this brunch, and would not hesitate to return!

Brunch at Milestones

I had not been to a Milestones in quite some time when my bff told me about their fantastic brunch menu.  Some friends met the fiancé and I for a post-new year’s gathering, and we enjoyed our brunch during a quiet Sunday morning at the restaurant.  The servers were great, and there were many other brunch items from which to choose (sadly, we all gobbled up our food so quickly that I only had time to snap a photo of mine before I dove in!)

I am a huge sucker for a good eggs benedict, so when I saw their grilled shrimp california benedict on the menu, I was sold.  Grilled jumbo shrimp, double-smoked bacon and house-made avocado salsa are served atop a toasted English muffin, all smothered in a generous dollop of their delightful hollandaise sauce.  The sides included breakfast potatoes topped with their Mediterranean salsa and some fresh fruit.  I also indulged in Milestones’ ultimate brunch bundle, which added to my meal a starter plate of fresh fruit with a mint dressing and my choice of mimosa: I opted for the raspberry mimosa, which was heavenly.

All of us really enjoyed this brunch, and would not hesitate to return!

Filed under food breakfast brunch eggs eggs benedict potatoes Milestones avocado shrimp bacon

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Curried tuna with avocado on crackers
How were your holidays?  Mine were quick but wonderful.  We got to visit with our families, enjoy two turkey dinners and lots of laughter.  It has been snowing a great deal which has made driving tricky, but we managed.  It sure is gorgeous outside with the more than 50 cm of snow that we’ve had in the past week!
Continuing with my quest to cook from Chef Michael Smith’s book, Fast Flavours, I have this delicious tuna recipe to share with you this week.  I can’t believe I never thought to mix tuna with avocado; these two ingredients come together perfectly!  I decided to adapt Chef Smith’s recipe quite a bit so if you would like his original recipe, check out his book!  I must apologize for my terrible photo; I was trying to work with the natural light coming in my kitchen window but it totally washed out the colours.  Don’t let my terrible photo fool you: these little morsels were completely delicious, and healthy to boot!  
Curried tuna with avocado 
Adapted from Chef Michael Smith’s Fast Flavours
Ingredients
-  1 can (184 g) of your favourite tuna 
- 1/4 cup of 0% greek yogurt
- 1 tbsp of zucchini relish (I used President’s Choice)
- 1/2 tbsp of curry powder (adjust to your preferred taste)
- fresh ground pepper to your taste
- 1 ripe avocado, scooped out and chunked
- sprinkle of smoked paprika
- a bunch of your favourite crackers
Directions
- Drain most of the liquid from the tuna (it doesn’t have to be completely drained, but mostly) and put it in a medium bowl.  Add greek yogurt, relish, curry powder and pepper.  Stir in the avocado and mash everything up to your desired consistency (chunks of avocado are ok!)
- Spread onto crackers of your choice, sprinkle with a dash of smoked paprika and enjoy!

Curried tuna with avocado on crackers

How were your holidays?  Mine were quick but wonderful.  We got to visit with our families, enjoy two turkey dinners and lots of laughter.  It has been snowing a great deal which has made driving tricky, but we managed.  It sure is gorgeous outside with the more than 50 cm of snow that we’ve had in the past week!

Continuing with my quest to cook from Chef Michael Smith’s book, Fast Flavours, I have this delicious tuna recipe to share with you this week.  I can’t believe I never thought to mix tuna with avocado; these two ingredients come together perfectly!  I decided to adapt Chef Smith’s recipe quite a bit so if you would like his original recipe, check out his book!  I must apologize for my terrible photo; I was trying to work with the natural light coming in my kitchen window but it totally washed out the colours.  Don’t let my terrible photo fool you: these little morsels were completely delicious, and healthy to boot!  

Curried tuna with avocado 

Adapted from Chef Michael Smith’s Fast Flavours

Ingredients

-  1 can (184 g) of your favourite tuna 

- 1/4 cup of 0% greek yogurt

- 1 tbsp of zucchini relish (I used President’s Choice)

- 1/2 tbsp of curry powder (adjust to your preferred taste)

- fresh ground pepper to your taste

- 1 ripe avocado, scooped out and chunked

- sprinkle of smoked paprika

- a bunch of your favourite crackers

Directions

- Drain most of the liquid from the tuna (it doesn’t have to be completely drained, but mostly) and put it in a medium bowl.  Add greek yogurt, relish, curry powder and pepper.  Stir in the avocado and mash everything up to your desired consistency (chunks of avocado are ok!)

- Spread onto crackers of your choice, sprinkle with a dash of smoked paprika and enjoy!

Filed under food tuna avocado Chef Michael Smith Fast Flavours recipe cookbook President's Choice lunch crackers snack

5 notes

Lunch at the Foolish Chicken

The Foolish Chicken is another one of those fab little places close to where I work, and I’ve come to know it and love it. I’ve eaten there many times but had not yet documented my experience until now. My most recent visit was in commemoration of my bff’s wedding, where her work colleagues joyously celebrated sending her off to get hitched!

The resto is owned and operated by a husband and wife team who are extremely friendly and accommodating. They love hosting groups of nearby office workers (an extremely common occurrence for them) and we love to eat their delicious, home cooked, lovingly prepared meals! They are known for their expertly cooked chicken and for their homemade desserts which include amazing cheesecakes and pies.


I was feeling sandwich-y during this last visit so I decided to order one of the daily specials: a chicken sandwich with avocado served with a garden salad. The sammy came served on an herbed bun, and the chicken breast was tender and juicy. I think it had been marinated in a dried herb seasoning mixture as I could see the remnants of dried rosemary still clinging to the breast meat when I opened up the sandwich. It was delicious! I was so full.

Our gal of the hour was also treated to a celebratory dessert by one of our fellow staff members, so she chose the Snickers Pie to share with the table.  The pie features a chocolate brownie base stuffed with oozy caramel and peanut goodness all with a smooth chocolate ganache topping.   I’m  told the pie was to. die. for. And that’s the thing about the Foolish Chicken - you know you’re always going to walk away satisfied after a delicious, well-made meal for a great price!

Filed under food lunch sandwich chicken avocado delicious fresh Ottawa Foolish Chicken Snickers Pie dessert sweet homemade treat

6 notes

Weekday Supper
The boyfriend and I threw together this dinner one recent week night, and it was delicious!  I made a marinade for the chicken breast consisting of red wine, maple mustard, salt, pepper, garlic powder, olive oil and a handful of chopped fresh herbs (sage, thyme and rosemary).  Also, to cook the cauliflower, we created a foil pocket, tossed the veg with some olive oil and herbs and spices, and put it on the bbq with the chicken.  I also added half an avocado for some creamy richness!  Yum.

Weekday Supper

The boyfriend and I threw together this dinner one recent week night, and it was delicious!  I made a marinade for the chicken breast consisting of red wine, maple mustard, salt, pepper, garlic powder, olive oil and a handful of chopped fresh herbs (sage, thyme and rosemary).  Also, to cook the cauliflower, we created a foil pocket, tossed the veg with some olive oil and herbs and spices, and put it on the bbq with the chicken.  I also added half an avocado for some creamy richness!  Yum.

Filed under food dinner chicken bbq cauliflower avocado healthy recipe marinade

72 notes

Sushi rolls keep us moving….
We ate out quite a bit during our recent move, but it was a good opportunity to squeeze in a few extra sushi meals.  Luckily, Hockey Sushi was nearby!  I love a good salmon and avocado roll!  My second was a chef’s special, with cucumber, avocado, crab, shrimp tempura, roe, mayo and topped with white tuna.  Yummmmmmmmy.

Sushi rolls keep us moving….

We ate out quite a bit during our recent move, but it was a good opportunity to squeeze in a few extra sushi meals.  Luckily, Hockey Sushi was nearby!  I love a good salmon and avocado roll!  My second was a chef’s special, with cucumber, avocado, crab, shrimp tempura, roe, mayo and topped with white tuna.  Yummmmmmmmy.

Filed under food sushi salmon avocado fresh rolls maki tuna shrimp

4 notes

Steak sandwich, fancy style!
Ingredients:
1 ciabatta bun, cut in half
1 thin striploin steak, bbq’d
1/2 ripe avocado, sliced into think strips
1 bell pepper (red, orange, yellow or green) sliced
1 onion, sliced into think strips
5 white mushrooms, sliced
Small bunch of fresh cilantro
A few pieces of baby spinach
1 tsp bbq sauce of your choice
1 or two slices cheese of your choice
Salt and pepper to taste
Directions:
Stir fry onion, mushroom and bell pepper until softened, salt and pepper to taste.  Bbq steak how you most enjoy it, remove from heat.  Toast bun, then top with baby spinach, steak (whole or sliced into thin strips), cheese, and then slather on bbq sauce.  Add the rest of the toppings, slice and enjoy!

Steak sandwich, fancy style!

Ingredients:

1 ciabatta bun, cut in half

1 thin striploin steak, bbq’d

1/2 ripe avocado, sliced into think strips

1 bell pepper (red, orange, yellow or green) sliced

1 onion, sliced into think strips

5 white mushrooms, sliced

Small bunch of fresh cilantro

A few pieces of baby spinach

1 tsp bbq sauce of your choice

1 or two slices cheese of your choice

Salt and pepper to taste

Directions:

Stir fry onion, mushroom and bell pepper until softened, salt and pepper to taste.  Bbq steak how you most enjoy it, remove from heat.  Toast bun, then top with baby spinach, steak (whole or sliced into thin strips), cheese, and then slather on bbq sauce.  Add the rest of the toppings, slice and enjoy!

Filed under food sandwich steak avocado dinner lunch

23 notes

A hearty meal of a dish, this dinner appropriate salad is delicious AND nutritious and won’t leave you feeling empty.  My sister and I made it together while she was visiting and we both loved it!
I love the idea of adding quinoa to a salad for protein, and the mixture of creamy avocado, sweet nectarine and crunchy fennel is so satisfying.  The pistachios add a nice salty touch to balance out the nectarine.
The recipe can be found on Sprouted Kitchen at http://sproutedkitchen.com/?p=1779.

A hearty meal of a dish, this dinner appropriate salad is delicious AND nutritious and won’t leave you feeling empty.  My sister and I made it together while she was visiting and we both loved it!

I love the idea of adding quinoa to a salad for protein, and the mixture of creamy avocado, sweet nectarine and crunchy fennel is so satisfying.  The pistachios add a nice salty touch to balance out the nectarine.

The recipe can be found on Sprouted Kitchen at http://sproutedkitchen.com/?p=1779.

Filed under salad nectarine fennel quinoa vegetarian food avocado lunch dinner recipe