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Wednesday, June 30, 2010


It's Canada Day... off... tomorrow!  So go the words of an infectious new song by Carolyn Mark and NQ Arbuckle.

In honour of the most fun - or at least patriotic - stat holiday, I have gathered a selection of Canadiana for your perusal.  Canada has many national icons, and Canada Day is the perfect day to go corny and cliche with some of these symbols of the True North.

Let's start real classic... the beaver, and an homage to Bob and Doug MacKenzie (or any two random hosers you like!):

[both from Touch The Dutch on Etsy]

Now, if those jewelry items weren't loud enough to express your patriotism, and you find Canadian summers a little cool, try on this baby on July 1st:

[Cowichan sweater found here]

If you would rather not wear your Canadian culture, and would prefer to belt it out loud, try singing along to a few of these Canadiana anthems:

In order:  curling anthem "Tournament of Hearts" by Winnipeg's The Weakerthans, cult classic "Bobcaygeon" by Canadian institution The Tragically Hip, and the ultimate Canada Day sing-a-long, "True Patriot Love" by my personal fave, the Joel Plaskett Emergency.

So whether you're in Bonavista or Vancouver Island (let's make that St. John's or Vancouver - close enough!), from Sable Island to Ottawa and all the spots around and in-between:

Happy Canada Day!!

Tuesday, June 29, 2010


June has been a great month.  Two visits from family and very recently, some nice weather.  On top of that, I've recently received some lovely treats!  Allow me to share:

The first one is a gift from my sister, Tidyowl.  I have mentioned before what a great gift-giver she is and the tradition continues!  She is well aware of my 'kitchen habit'.  On a recent trip to Edmonton, she visited Anthropologie and selected the cutest apron ever (see below).  She came for a visit just this past weekend and I was thrilled to receive it as a hostess gift!

new apron

Check out the quality and details below:



sweet li'l pocket

The next treats weren't exactly a present... well, they were the kind of present you get for yourself.  I have been admiring ohhellofriend's blog and Etsy shop for ages now and finally decided to indulge.  When the package arrived yesterday, I felt like it was a present - it was wrapped with so much care and attention to detail!  Just had to share:



lovely package


The items I chose were floral hair pins and a floral ring in an antiqued style. 

hair pins

hair pins



Not only were the items I ordered amazing, there were some fun little extras.  A bonus gift for blog readers, and sweet little stickers in the style of ohhellofriend.

blog reader gift


It was like Christmas in June! 

More posts soon...

Friday, June 18, 2010

Rhubarb-almond delight my name for the delectable dessert that is the Strawberry-Rhubarb Frangipane Galette.  This recipe was featured on The Dog's Breakfast, a lovely food blog.  I subsequently mentioned in my Rhubarb post.

Why the name update?  Mainly because my mother-in-law and I spent the majority of the week fretting over the pronunciation of the thing.  Until we found the Merriam-Webster pronunciation audio clips, that is! 

So it turns out that frangipane is simply a French word for an almond-flavoured custard, and galette is a 'flat round pastry topped with fruit'. 

As I've previously mentioned, I don't bake much except for the odd batch of cookies.  But my mother-in-law loves to bake, and is talented at it, at that!  So when she came to visit for a week after reading my rhubarb post, some baking was added to the agenda. 

My major contribution was dicing up the fruit:

strawberries and rhubarb

We spent the better part of an afternoon looking for almond-paste, first at Auntie Crae's (closed), Belbin's (only carry it at Christmas), and finally at Stockwood's (the one place in town where you can buy fondant icing, a lotto ticket, and a case of beer at 2 a.m.) 

almond paste

Almond paste (along with a lot of butter!) was the main ingredient in the frangipane:

frangipane in pyrex

Ok, who am I kidding, this isn't a picture of frangipane, it's a picture of the awesome vintage Pyrex bowl given to me by my sister, the best gift-giver ever.  This is the frangipane:


Yes, I somehow own a rolling pin...

rolling pin

M-I-L trimming the dough:

trimming dough

Filling the pastry:

preparing the galette

And now, the 'before':

ready to bake

And 'after':

ready to eat

It was delicious!  As the original blog post says, the smell is just heavenly.  If you still happen to have access to some in-season rhubarb, I definitely recommend!

Sunday, June 13, 2010

Words to live by

My fridge magnet:


Saturday, June 12, 2010

The Spout

A week ago today, myself and an intrepid group of classmates and friends went on a 'little hike' on the East Coast Trail.

ECTA sign

This particular segment took us from the Goulds to Bay Bulls, via a beautiful, rocky, steep and occasionally treacherous path.

This section is called the Spout Path due to a unique feature - a "wave driven geyser". This feature can be found about 10 km into the 23 km hike.

Yep, 23 km. Not the best choice, probably, for my first hike of the year, but like I said, we were intrepid. We ploughed through, pausing occasionally to hydrate, take pictures, gasp for air, or take some over-the-counter analgesics for the pain (ok, that last one was just me). Anyway, a week out and I am fully recovered and SO looking forward to my next hike, perhaps this one.

Here are a few more shots from the day (the rest can be found on my Flickr). And yes, it's more beautiful in person. Newfoundland is a place you really need to come and see at one point in your life. Bring your hiking boots, some acetaminophen, a very warm sweater and an intrepid spirit and get out there on the trails - you'll be glad you did!

[sea stack]

[me and the coast]

[springtime run-off]

[groomed section of the trail]

Thursday, June 3, 2010


As I mentioned in a recent Tweet, I think the universe is conspiring to foist its in-season rhubarb upon me.  If not the universe, then certainly the blogosphere.  Ladies and gentlemen of the audience, allow me to present:

Exhibit A.  Have never heard of 'frangipane' before... but here it is:  Strawberry-Rhubarb Frangipane Galette from The Dog's Breakfast

Exhibit B.  The mini-version of above!  Rustic Rhubarb Tarts from Smitten Kitchen.

Exhibit C.  This one might be my favorite.  Rhubarb Crunch Coffee Cake from Kitchen Simplicity.

Exhibit D.  From a favorite blog - this cake looks so refined:  Lemon Buttermilk Rhubarb Bundt Cake from Craft Lovely.

Exhibit E.  Item 1.  From the New York Times Dining and Wine section - flashback to 1989 - Rhubarb Strawberry Mousse.

And Item 2.  The modern-day retort:  Honey-and-Ricotta Mousse with Strawberry-Rhubarb Broth.  Mm-Mmmm.  (Again, credit to the Times.)

I could probably continue on to Exhibit Z but I'll wrap it up here.  As most of you know, I'm not much of a baker, so I might not get to any of these recipes.  But if any of you want to give them a whirl, I hereby offer my services as official taste-tester.  Just sayin'.