Ayaka’s Gluten-Free Quinoa Salad Recipe

Quinoa Salad

Quinoa was one of those ingredients on our list of things we didn’t cook with and couldn’t pronounce. Turns out, this grain-like edible seed packs quite the nutritional punch. Full of protein, fibre, iron and calcium, quinoa is great for gluten-free diets, vegetarians and those who are lactose intolerant.

Ayaka managed to avoid quinoa her entire life. That is until her brother had to adopt a gluten-free diet. She was pushed out of her culinary comfort zone and had to work with this unfamiliar ingredient. The resulting experiment turned out to be a delicious one. Continue reading

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Sunset Sangria – A Blonde Sangria with Watermelon, Basil & Ginger

Pitcher of blonde sangria with watermellon, basil & ginger Summer is just around the corner and our bar is what some would consider negligently overstocked with wine.  A batch of Sangria, Spain’s answer to the quintessential patio drink is not only in order, but well overdue!  Anyone who has ever enjoyed a glass (or two or three) with us will tell you that this seemingly harmless libation is just as destructive as it is delicious.  In our rendition, we opted for a sangria blanca or blonde sangria substituting the traditional red wine with a white. The result is a more delicate wine punch without sacrificing potency.  The refreshing combination of watermelon, citrus and fresh basil has a little bite with the addition of ginger.  A favourite amongst all of our friends, this stuff goes down so easy you’ll have to consider doubling the recipe!

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Coast to Coast Kettle Corn

Kettle corn is one of those delightful treats that creates the perfect interplay of salty and sweet. As you have probably noticed in earlier posts, it is one of our favourite combinations of flavours. Recently we had the pleasure of meeting Jessica from Salish Sea Salts at the Wild Foods Festival. Jessica was kind enough to send us home with a bunch of her locally harvested artisan sea salts to play with in our kitchen. We had planned on making a batch of kettle corn for an upcoming movie night and decided that it would be a great opportunity to try some experimental recipes. We had our heart set on the Smoked Maple Sea Salt that she described to us as her coast to coast product because you get the wonderful East Coast maple flavour combined with the West Coast sea salt.

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Meaghan’s Mediterranean Pasta

This Mediterranean inspired pasta is bursting with bold flavours characteristic of the region. The combination of zesty sun-dried tomatoes, the fruity punch of Kalamata olives, aromatic basil and garlic create a kaleidoscope of flavours on the palate. What’s wonderful about this recipe is its flexibility. It can be served hot as a savoury entree or cold as a hearty pasta salad. Soy cheese can be used in lieu of feta and parmigiano to make it vegan and the addition of grilled chicken breast would satisfy meat-eaters alike. Adapted and perfected by our very own flirty foodie Meaghan, this recipe is sure to transport your taste buds straight to the sunny Mediterranean, even on the dreariest of rainy days on the West Coast. Continue reading

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West Coast Salad Rolls

Vietnam will always have a special place in both of our hearts and our livers (thanks to the mass consumption of Vodka Vietnam). We met and worked at a pho restaurant and spent the better part of two months backpacking through the bustling streets of Hanoi down to the serene waters of the Mekong Delta. It’s only fitting that our first food post paid homage to our ongoing fling with Vietnam.

Salad rolls (Goi Cuon) are a popular light Vietnamese snack food served cold or at room temperature. Ubiquitous in Western pho houses everywhere, our version comes with a West Coast twist; with smoked salmon lox and grilled scallops replacing the usual chicken and shrimp. For added flavour, we grilled our veggies, marinated our scallops in spicy peanut sauce and used Thai basil as well as cilantro. While most Western recipes calls for a peanut dipping sauce, our rendition is served with the traditional fish sauce (Nuoc cham). This was an experimental recipe with delicious results. These can be made well in advanced, perfect for entertaining guests.

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