Archive for February, 2010

Jamaican Jerk Chicken

February 22, 2010

Jerk ChickenWhile Adam was totally fine with my meat-free ways (honest!), there are a few things he’s been a bit excited about now that I’m eating meat again. Buffalo Chicken Wings was one, and Jerk Chicken was another. Lucky for him, we visited Duff’s (his favourite since forever) a few weeks ago, and just this evening, we tried our hand at Jerk Chicken. It turned out great! We served it with a somewhat “meh” red beans & rice – need to find a better recipe for that next time. Overall though, a great meal.

We actually began it last night, as it could marinade for up to 24 hours, and it made tonight’s cooking a breeze – so we’ll definitely do this one again. I’m getting more confident with this whole cooking meat thing, though we’ve really only done it a handful of times so far. We got our whole chicken from Rowe Farms, which is sold at Fiesta Farms.

I didn’t alter this recipe at all (beyond cutting it in half), so it can be found here. My only adjustment would be for the sauce – it has you mix the jerk seasoning with a full cup of ketchup… which ended up tasting like what it was: dressed up ketchup. Eh, we coulda done better. The seasoning/rub on it’s own, however, was fabulous (though spicy! That’s what we get for using a scotch bonnet… good thing we like spice!). A pretty easy meal that we will be having the leftovers of tomorrow night.

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Eating in New York

February 18, 2010

Cari and I have been to New York together before.  In 2005, we drove down, stayed in Secaucus, New Jersey, went to see Spamalot and Fiddler on the Roof, ate a lot, and came home.  This time we flew, stayed in midtown Manhattan, went to see Jonathan Richman, A Little Night Music and Maude Night at the Upright Citizens Brigade Theatre, ate a lot, and came home.

Since this blog mostly has to do with eating, we thought we’d share our eating experiences.  There’s hundreds of restaurants in New York City.  These are the ones we found ourselves at.

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Life at No.71: A Year In Review

February 11, 2010

It may be a good 6 weeks into 2010, but we we’re marking a year in review of our blog. We started blogging at Life at No. 71 back on Feb 12, 2009, and we thought it might be a good time to take a look back at our year of postings. What were some highlights?

In the last year, we’ve been to California twice, witnessed my brother getting married and gained a great sister-in-law, mourned the loss of Adam’s grandmother, watched our friend’s little one go from very wee to not so wee, honed our gardening skills (though we still have a lot of learning to do!), gotten the hang of canning and preserved some of our garden goodness, and enjoyed a countless number of great meals both at home and away.

A year in, here are some of our favourite posts:

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Twisting our Tastebuds

February 7, 2010

Photo courtesy of Emily Wat

Last night, we gathered to try miracle fruit. We first heard about miracle fruit a few years ago through our friend Matt, who explained it’s “miracle” qualities: essentially it alters your tastebuds so that things taste different. From what we’d read, lemons would taste sweet and tabasco sauce like doughnut glaze. We knew we wanted to try it out right away, but only got around to it recently – and thanks to Emily’s nudging and co-planning, we got it planned and turned the event into a fundraiser for Haiti relief.

We found a great source in Toronto to get the berries from and ordered 2 berries per person and came up with a pretty massive list of things to buy. Our haul:

Photo courtesy of Emily Wat

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Revisiting Recipes

February 5, 2010

One problem with blogging about what we cook on a regular basis is once we post about something once, we don’t post about it again.  And while we do enjoy trying new recipes and being experimental, the reality is we always strive for recipes that we *can* make again and again. Things that can fall into a fairly regular cycle of things we cook, making weekly plans quick and easy, and always be confident that what you’re going to be cooking is a hit. So many weeks we end up only posting new recipes on weekends, because that’s when we tend to experiment and go all out elaborate meal plans – and the rest of the week we just cycle through recipes we’ve already made a dozen times.

These are the recipes we deem worthy of our “regular” rotation at the moment, and it tends to change every couple of weeks as we add new regulars and put a few we get sick of on hold for awhile:

  • Couscous with Broccoli and Walnuts – We only posted about this one this week, but it was probably the third time we’d made it. So so quick and easy. Also, it’s healthy and cheap – so who could ask for more?
  • Hot, Sweet, & Sour Chickpeas with Eggplant – We’ve made this one twice already, and I would happily make it again in a week or two. Again, it’s super quick to make, and we tend to have most of the ingredients on hand at all times, except for eggplant – which is easy to buy. It’s also a fairly interesting dish – it’s essentially just a simple curry, but with really interesting flavours going on.
  • Soup: We like to have soup once a week -especially in the winter- and lately we’ve cycled between the Curried Carrot Soup, Creamy Potato Leek Soup (which we just made last night, and the Artichoke Soup Provençal.
  • And while we haven’t posted the recipe yet (coming soon!), a new addition to our cycle is a Chili-bean quesadilla. It has everything a weeknight meal should have: It’s cheap, fast, and tasty. A pretty simple dish using poblano peppers, and it’s helped us discover that poblanos are kind of awesome. If we have tortillas on hand, this recipe will be a part of our weekly plan, nearly guaranteed.

Having easy fall back recipes really is key, otherwise we end up visiting our favourite Falafel/Shawarma place a little too often. (We can get dinner for both of us for around $10! And it’s good!)

Couscous with Broccoli and Walnuts

February 1, 2010

Couscous with Broccoli & Walnuts

File this one under that rare trifecta of “quick, cheap and healthy.”  Mark Bittman’s recipe involves dry roasting walnuts and cooking the couscous with the broccoli in olive oil before adding broth or water to properly cook it.  This recipe is remarkably easy and requires very little at the store, assuming you have a well-stocked pantry.  It won’t take more than 20 minutes to cook and for a dish as healthy as it undoubtedly is, it’s damn satisfying.

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Mushrooms on Toast

February 1, 2010

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One of our favourite things about living off of St. Clair is that we’re within walking distance to the Green Barn Farmers’ Market at Artscape Wychwood Barns.  Of course, with the weather being as cold as it’s been, we decided to cop out this weekend and drive over.

A constant and popular presence at the Green Barn market is St. John’s Bakery (otherwise located on Broadview Avenue).   It’s hard to pass up a really good quality loaf of bread for $5.50, even if we typically enjoy baking our own.

You can’t miss St. John’s Bakery at the market; as soon as you enter the doors on the left side of the front of the building, you’ll see a huge amount of bread and a pleasant vendor with a wealth of knowledge of his wares.  We decided to treat ourselves to a loaf of multigrain sourdough even though we didn’t really know what we were going to do with it.

Then I remembered an episode of one of those Gordon Ramsay shows where he taught someone about a simple, rustic lunch that involved frying up a slide of bread, topping it with garlic-cooked mushrooms.  We went even further by adding shaved parmigiano reggiano and a little bit of truffle oil.  Simple, delicious, and perfect on a cold winter’s day.