My Weekly Adventures: When Work Takes Over…Again & The Game Plan (for the rest of 2018)

Welcome to the next weekly adventures. Maybe I should call this non-adventures? I’m not sure much happened other than myself sitting around watching TV, cleaning or going nuts over work, work and more work at the office and at home or multitasking a lot. So, let me think back about what to talk about  and whether something interesting happened over the last two weeks and hopefully this post won’t be a complete disaster….

Battle of Ingredients

Battle of Ingredients is back on track now. We also went back to our indoors non-BBQ format. This time we had the star of the show that Phoebe took care of with our friend’s winter melon. As for myself, I went the normal route and did something much more simple trying out a new spice for the chicken dish and then made some fall appropriate dessert. This time, we went into a true collab format and Phoebe tested out her recipe-writing skills.

You can head over and check out the post HERE.

Movies and Tea – Season 2: Guillermo Del Toro

Season 2 for Movies and Tea has officially started. I know that I just posted this yesterday as part of the Halloween Marathon. I have been so proud of this project that I just can’t help to share it in case anyone missed it yesterday. This season, we’re checking out Guillermo Del Toro’s films. For myself, Del Toro got on my radar after Pan’s Labyrinth but how were his films before that one? That is my journey in this Movies and Tea season. Of course, we kick off with his debut directorial feature, Cronos.

As a final shoutout, we are looking for guests this season. Drop me an email at kim.tranquildreams@gmail.com with which of Del Toro’s films you want to talk about and we’ll see if we can work something out.

Halloween Marathon 2018

Halloween Marathon

Halloween Marathon 2018 is done and over with. A lot of films I had planned didn’t happen but still, I still managed to get a few things watched and some new series as well. I’m actually quite pleased with how it turned out especially since there was a mix of reviews and not just movies. Its how I would prefer to do this. If you missed any of it, the Halloween marathon page is updated. You can find it HERE.

NaNoWriMo 2018 – Best of Luck to Participants

As a participant of NaNoWriMo, I always take some time to encourage all of you participating in the month-long grind to get a first draft of a novel written for a grand total of 50,000 words. While I do have an idea that I want to write about, I have decided to not write one. I’m still on the fence so who knows, maybe I’ll still jump in later on. I mean, I have pulled off a homerun week of 30,000 one year so its still possible. However, my plan is to edit a novel that I wrote during NaNoWriMo. Not for publishing, just so that I can get one of these done completely. I know I say it every year but I’ll figure out some way to stuff it into my overloaded schedule as it is. Either way, for you courageous challengers, best of luck! Just remember, that you can do it. Stay on track and remember that editing is the after process. Just keep on writing and 50,000 words will come to you or even more. 🙂

What’s Coming Up – Game Plan

2018 hasn’t exactly gone the way I had anticipated. As some of you have seen, I’ve kind of slowed down operations overall on all the projects this past month (if not the past few months). Reason being that I just wasn’t motivated and it felt like so much other personal life things were weighing down on me that I was just exhausted. In fact, if you look at all the stuff I’ve watched versus how many of those still need to be written, its endless. In terms of movies, I’m relatively on track especially since I do a lot of double features but TV binges are just way behind so much that I’ve started rewatching some of the series in order to do the binge post.

With that said, the new year is in two months. December usually goes out to holiday films. I probably will need some twist to it unless I watch a lot of Hallmark movies. It really depends what Netflix has to offer so I’ll talk about it later. November has that added task mentioned above to edit one of my past novels from NaNoWriMo. I have probably 4 or 5 written. With that said, 2019 means not only that the blogiversary is coming up in mid January but also what changes to be made come the new year. Its been on my mind for a while now since I can’t do everything and keep up with my two other podcasts. Something has to give and its where its getting me in a little bit of an unsure phase of whether its because I just lacked motivation this year that things fell behind or if I had better time management that it would have worked out with the current system.

Anyways, not much of a game plan but the goal is to get a lot of those TV binges and Double Features movie reviews out over the next two months to try to catch up. I’m getting back a lot of the writing motivation so hopefully all the projects will be up and running now. Movies and Tea already is in Season 2 as mentioned before so that is already a positive start!

Cute Kitty Pic

cat

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Battle of Ingredients: Fall: Winter Melon & Pumpkin

Welcome to the next Battle of Ingredients!

This time, we are actually taking a focus on a Chinese vegetable, Winter Melon which our guests had as harvest and Phoebe from Starry Traveler’s Road, my partner in crime in this project took the helm on our featured vegetable. As for myself, I took the back seat on this one and chose pumpkin as my fall harvest highlight, however, mine wasn’t our own harvest but just a recipe with the ingredient. I don’t have the land to grow pumpkin. (However, I did get two little ones that I haven’t made yet so I’ll be making a dessert out of that one soon.) We’re back indoors for the next few months until summer arrives.

Wine

wine

Dr. Loosen Riesling 2017

We started our main meal with the Riesling. The primary reason is that the second sparkling wine needed some more chilling time. This one is pretty good. It starts off slightly dry however the finish is very smooth. Its categorized as fruity and sweet which it delivers for sure.

Domaine de Lavoie Poiré Mousseaux 2014

We’re personally at our house at least, not much into pear flavored drinks. In fact, I can’t remember the last time I bought one however, this one was surprisingly good. It had a very subtle pear flavor and was a nice change. We cracked this one open with our dessert which was very fitting, I’d say.

Starter

Winter Melon

winter melon soup

Winter Melon Soup
Recipe by Phoebe

Ingredients:
Winter Melon
Dried Chinese mushrooms
Shrimps
Chicken Breasts (x2)
Jinhua Ham
Water
Dried scallop (optional)

Utensils:
Knife
Cutting Board
Bowl
Thermal Cooker
(using the Japanese Import Thermos Thermal Cooker)

*Our friend who gave the massive winter melon already removed the little fur on the melon with newspaper so it is easier to handle)*

  1. Soak dried Chinese mushrooms in bowl of water
  2. Cut the winter melon. Remove both the skin and seeds.
  3. Cut winter melon chunks to desired size (bigger pieces is normally better as the melon will disintegrate if too small)
  4. Put melon in stainless steel inner pot.
  5. Put in chicken breasts and shrimps.
  6. After a little while, pour the water of the Chinese mushrooms and toss mushrooms with other ingredients.
  7. Cut a small piece of Jinhua ham (do not put too much or it will be salty).
  8. Add water to the inner stainless steel pot and simmer to a boil (big bubbles).
  9. Put into the insulated outer container to cook for a few hours.

The soup turned out so good. Winter melon was cooked perfectly. The chicken, shrimps and mushrooms enhanced the flavor of the winter melon and soup in a whole. This is a fairly time consuming process to make any kind of Chinese soup so kudos to Phoebe for taking on this challenge.

Main Meal

Dim Sum

My contribution is the much more easy and simple meal here. The pasta is a mix of gluten-free spaghetti and Catelli Protein spaghettini. The vegetables are cooked in the pan and has carrots, brussel sprouts and portobello mushrooms. The chicken here is the highlight as I used chicken thighs and a local spice that I bought from Rustique Pies called Dim Sum which is a fun take with five spices. This dry rub was the highlight of my dish and I have to say that it turned out pretty good. It was slightly spicy though but worked so well.

The original concept was to have it all cooked together as one big pasta dish however, my pan just wasn’t big enough so I ended up doing it like this. The idea is that the seasoning from the chicken and vegetables will give the pasta taste so depending on how it was mixed, the pasta could have felt bland as I only put a little oil and salt in there. Most of the flavors was the in the chicken and vegetables.

winter nelon

Winter Melon and Jinhua Ham
Recipe by Phoebe

Ingredients:
Winter Melon
Jinhua Ham
Honey (maple syrup taste better if I recall)

Utensils:
Knife
Cutting board
Spoon
Deep flat pan with lid
Steaming Dish
Steaming Rack

  1. Cut winter melon to bigger pieces, remove seeds and skin.
  2. Prepare pot with water to steam.
  3. Gently slice in the middle of the big chunks and put in steaming dish.
  4. Cut the Jinhua ham in slices and place a slice into the middle of the melon chunks.
  5. Drizzle the melon and ham with a spoonful of honey
  6. Steam until melon and ham are cooked. Winter melon will become transparent when cooked.

This winter melon and Jinhua ham dish was done really well. For one, the winter melon was cooked perfectly. The balance here is mostly however between the honey’s sweetness and the Jinhua ham’s saltiness. Phoebe made a point above about how maple syrup was the original ingredient which we didn’t happen to have a small portion to use so she went with honey. In my opinion, this did turn out that honey didn’t quite overcome the powerful saltiness of Jinhua ham. However, that’s my opinion. I know that for someone who likes saltier foods (and not bland like myself), this worked pretty well.

Dessert

Pumpkin Cookies

Pumpkin Cookies

Recipe found via Pinterest: https://lovelylittlekitchen.com/soft-pumpkin-cookies/

I was actually able to use this recipe exactly as it was. The only ingredient that I didn’t use was the nutmeg. Also, I ended up cutting the recipe in half because I didn’t want to 3 dozen. However, seeing as everyone loved it and pretty much ate it all in the evening. Probably 3 dozen would have been good. This one was really good. For one, it was fluffy and soft. Phoebe had a comment about how it wasn’t heavy on cinnamon as she doesn’t like cinnamon as much but it worked with this recipe as it was fairly subtle and balanced between the ingredients.

 This wraps up this month’s Battle of Ingredients!
Next month, we head out like past years to MTL a Table in November before we head back to the kitchen and homecooking.

Battle of Ingredients: Moon Festival & Autumn BBQ

Battle of Ingredients

Welcome to the next round of Battle of Ingredients hosted together with Phoebe over at Starry Traveler’s Road. This month’s get together was a slightly belated Moon Festival celebration as well as the last BBQ of the season.

Its a packed one this time so let’s see what we came up with. A lot of the food was really thought up simply by our brains so if we have recipes references, we’ll share it, if not, we can list some ingredients or whatnot. this time seems mostly to be checking out spices and such. Nothing too complex as we were both fairly busy with our personal lives.

Wines

Wine

The two wines offered by our friends this time were these two rose wines

  • Listel
  • Cote des roses

I will talk about both of these wine in the upcoming wine recap. I had already tasted Cote des Roses before but realized that I hadn’t shared it in any wine recaps before (oops..).

Main Courses

BBQ

We went fairly simple this time. Phoebe took care of most of the food. She had some vegetables from various types of cauliflowers to peppers and more. She also had corn. There was also steaks which she had two types of seasoning for. The first was a gourmet steak spice blend and the second was a innovative herb type which was a mix of oregano and thyme with salt.

BBQ

My contribution for dinner were kabobs. It had sausages, zucchini, peppers, mini portobello mushrooms and onions. The sausages were the IGA supermarket brands. One kabob had the honey-garlic flavor and the other one was wine and chives. There was no additional seasoning added to anything. We just put it on the skewer and barbecued it.

Results

I’m sorry that I didn’t take more of the veggies pic. However, everything turned out really good. The steaks had two different flavors. The one with the spices had more of the flavor as the spices were on the steaks itself. While the herbs and salt was more subtle, which is normal since it was just on top. As for the kabobs, I thought they turned out fairly well. It was fairly packed but cooked quickly so was good. The sausage flavors were also quite delicious.

Dessert

 

king's pastry

Dessert was obviously the highlight here and that’s moon cakes. Just like last year, we went for a more local brand. This one is a Canadian brand, King’s Pastry. It was a variety pack (like last year as well). The flavors were the following:

  • Date paste
  • Red Bean paste with melon bits
  • Traditional one egg yolk lotus paste
  • Five nuts

To be honest, they were okay. The five nuts had the citrus peel which was a bit intense. My husband and Phoebe was not a fan of it to say the least. The traditional was a bit too sweet. The date paste turned out better than expected. The same applied for the red bean paste.

We also had a fruit bowl that I put together with apples, clementines and grapes but I forgot to take a picture so we’ll leave that out since no one really ate any of it with the amount of sweets we already had.

Overall, a simple but lovely meal together!
This is a wrap for this Battle of Ingredients!
Back to the indoor kitchen for us as we figure out our next battle!
Nothing settled just yet..we’ll be back in a few weeks!

My Weekly Adventures: A Little Bit of Everything…

Welcome to the next Adventures post!

First of all, if you do drop by here frequently, I’m sorry for the sparseness of the posts, I’ll have a general explanation of what went down and kind of took over my life. I feel like I’ve said that a lot in 2018. While there were a lot of things that have been fairly cool in 2018, overall on a personal sense, 8 months in and I’m sure my husband and I are quite over it and ready for something incredibly great to balance things out. Anyways, we gotta stay positive to hopefully attract some more positive things..at least thats the concept in my mind.

Let’s see how the second half of August went!

The next Battle of Ingredients

Battle of Ingredients

We skipped a month of Battle of Ingredients in July because well, its busy in July for myself. However, we got things set for mid-August and had it all ready to go for our Take 2 of BBQ. This time, we each made some nice twists and there were a lot of success. Some recipes are ideas for other cooking methods in later challenges for non-BBQ and others, we learned from its not so perfect execution. Overall, it was a fun little time together to hang out and catch up and explore some new recipes. Its hard to imagine we just did the 9th Battle of Ingredients and the next is the 10th!

You can check out the full post HERE.

Lachine Half Marathon – Spectator

No pictures for this event. I’ve grown so accustom to doing half marathon support for my friend that I just kind of chill out a lot. It was a super hot day and I got a mini sunburn. Honestly, my bad for choosing to sit on a bench under the blazing sun catching up on reading. It was a super nice and honestly, I kind of miss it because the weather’s slightly cooled down and after that race and going home for a pool session, our pool motor is dying but as its the end of the season, we are only replacing everything next year and closing the pool early for the year. However, in terms of the Lachine Marathon, it was a tough one because the heat came in fairly quick. My friend did finish it within the time he wanted but so close. This season has been a tough one for him. A few more races to go for the season and with the heat ramping down a little, I’m hoping that its gets a positive turn for him. However if you haven’t been to the Lachine Half, its set in a pretty cool pier/park area with some stuff set up to look at and nice little sitting areas and all that fun stuff.

The 15 Hour ER Adventure

Life takes us for some crazy time. Don’t freak out! I didn’t go to the ER personally however, my husband did have some pain that he was enduring and we had chalked up to maybe indigestion or stomach flu until he had pains on his side which because just very unbearable by the time we hit the end of the work week. For those who don’t know about Canada’s free healthcare, it just means that there is an incredible wait time more so because in Quebec, medical professionals and the whole system is fairly messed up so we ended up doing a 12 hour wait time in the ER then got sent to the room to wait for the doctor another hour before he saw him, took tests and proceeded to round out another 2 hours or more waiting for test analysis, results and diagnosis. It turns out it was something of the beginning of a stomach ulcer and its time for meds to stop it before it gets more serious and well, the pain still showed up every once in a while so further test is in the horizon at the moment. Quite the stressful time and honestly, after my 5:30am arrival to home after the ER adventure and staying awake to make sure the husband was okay and being over 30, the all nighter and sleeping 2.5 hours just kind of murdered my entire week that followed and with it, any energy or motivation to process thoughts on movies and reviews. I spent most of the time after work sitting in my chair just resting and relaxing this week.

Either way, with that little scare…we are officially enforcing…

A Transition to Change in Eating Habits and having more Balanced Meals

Not sure why that’s a section in itself! But I’m totally grasping for straws for something to talk about. Anyways, I’ve been getting back to working out as you can see. As I’m typing this up, we just literally finished binging Ultimate Beastmaster Season 3 and boy, am I excited to talk about it in the next TV Binge! Yes, its moved forward in priority because I’m so hyped by it. However, that is good because Ultimate Beastmaster usually gets us super motivated to train again. We are already working on the eating healthier thing and for that reason, I’m decreasing Goodfood boxes to help get into a groove of making food from scratch on our own and not always relying on boxes because the reality is that the boxes were meant to help support the crazy weeks and not so that we could get lazy and that is what we’ve been doing a lot, which results to some bad eating habits whenever we don’t get boxes. Either way, transition going on already and I’m probably not going to share that except perhaps on Instagram or if I try out any cool new recipes.

We did make this recipe today as a little throwback: Basil Avocado Bacon Pasta. The post is HERE. We found this recipe 5 years ago and we still make it a few times a year. Its actually the first time we made it this year so like I said, we’re off our game a little.

If you have any healthy and tasty recipes, do share it in the comments below. We’re always down for suggestions!

New Dairy-Free Food Discovery

Upcoming:

  • TV Binges
  • Book Reviews & Blog Tour
  • Restaurant Review/Recap

Kitty Cute Pic

kitty cat

If you are following me on Avenue of Daydreams, you already saw this pic!
A silly kitty cat moment as she pulls down our towels that was hanging to dry on the railing to the ground to improvise a bed.

Thats it for this Weekly Adventures!
Its a little short but its just what happens when life gets taken over by more serious things!
On a side note, I am more avid on Instagram when I’m not posting or adding random posts on Facebook, so be sure to follow me there.

What adventures have you been up to?

Battle of Ingredients #9: BBQ 2018 – Take 2!

Battle of Ingredients

Welcome to the next Battle of Ingredients! July was a busy month (you must be sick of me saying this if you follow all the different topics here) but we came back in August for another BBQ. Its almost tradition now that summer months are focused around more BBQ oriented meals. Its easy and fun and we can enjoy the weather. You have to live in Montreal (or the majority of Canada with the exception of maybe British Columbia or Vancouver, I’m not sure) to understand that we live half the year in winter and then another 3 months in rainy spring and autumn and then just like 3 months of warm/hot/unbearable weather. We did get a heat wave which also stopped a lot of the normal activities (notice the lack of hiking posts…). Anyways, we are back and the weather luckily after July’s heatwave is also cooling down a little.

Let’s just jump right in and see what Phoebe (aka Starry Traveler) and I came up for this battle!

Drinks

Sangria

Beringer

  • Pepito White Sangria
  • Beringer Rose – White Zinfandel

A sweet wine and a delicious white sangria that matched perfectly with the season and the event.

Dinner

Inspiration: http://moneysavingsisters.com/3-ingredient-soy-sauce-coca-cola-chicken-drumsticks-slow-cooker-meal/

Phoebe’s husband loves veggies so she added in some asparagus, corn and peppers to grill.

Aside from that,she found inspiration to make chicken that she used to have as a child and the recipe above was the one she used to change a crock-pot version to a BBQ version with this first platter of drumsticks. Normally, its easier with chicken wings but we have friends who don’t eat wings so she accommodated this one.

The drumsticks didn’t get the flavor quite so well. I would imagine that the crock pot would work better when doing drumsticks to get the flavor in it. It wasn’t not tasty by any means. To be honest, I love soy sauce chicken drumsticks. Its one of my fave things to eat. Simple but very yummy. My mom still holds the crown (because I’m biased) but Phoebe’s was pretty awesome also. Everyone enjoyed it. However, the goal was to have the cola flavor pop out and in that sense, it didn’t quite make happen.

Chicken Wings (left): Normal Biftheque spiced wings
Chicken Wings (right) inspiration: https://www.geniuskitchen.com/recipe/betty-whites-chicken-wings-13707

Phoebe decided to do chicken wings anyways for everyone else. We made one normal variety with some typical steakhouse spices. It was delicious and a guaranteed success. For her second inspiration, it was to do the recipe above but adding in a fourth ingredient, white sugar. The recipe she saw above asks for brown sugar but she didn’t have any on hand. Chicken wings work better for BBQ and for this recipe, the cola flavor definitely did pop out much more. This recipe is an absolute hit. There may some freestyling with how the recipes are as most of the recipes here were inspirations and added in our own flair.

Chard Rolls

Inspiration for Chard Rolls: http://vegdept.com/asian-style-rainbow-chard-wraps/

My contribution was luckily a lot of my own harvests. I found this chard roll idea and decided to work with what I had. I scrapped the Asian way and didn’t simmer the leaves either but on the grill, they cooked everything through as it wrapped in aluminum foil. My version ended up looking like that and the size varied to the size of the leave. Inside, there were homegrown cucumbers, bell peppers and store bought carrots. I didn’t season it but let everyone add what they wanted. Chard leaves were a little overcooked so it was slightly bitter, bit still the whole tasted fairly good.

Dessert

Campfire Cones

Campfire Cones

Campfire Cone recipe: https://hip2save.com/2015/06/25/campfire-cones-fun-easy-summer-dessert/

When figuring out dessert, I searched up what we could do on the grill and it was this easy and fun idea. Mine had blueberries instead red berries because of allergy issues (not me but others). The cook time should have been longer so it would turn into a gooey delicious mess but still, it was a pretty good one. One that can be replicated in the oven, I would think also. I would do this one again with some raspberries and I’d imagine that it would turn out fantastic. Let’s face it..these are s’mores cones with a twist, right? How can you hate on that…well, unless you hate dark chocolate or marshmallows, I guess. You can see the ingredients that I used on the top. I used a local dark chocolate maker, Rochef and it had sea salt so added a different layer of taste.

And..this wraps up this Battle of Ingredients!
We are back to monthly editions for a little bit and see how things go from there.
September’s edition is still BBQ themed with some more look at what else to cook..seasonal and whatnot.
If you have any suggestions, go ahead and suggest away in the comments and we’ll take a look at what we could do next time.

My Weekly Adventures: Family, Friends & Events

Its been a month everyone! I had to make the executive decision to skip last time because well, the end of June was kind of sad with not much going on. Seeing as the first part of July had just enough to pair it up, here we are!

A note for some things below. Events are in town and in the next two weeks, the main focus going into August will be on Fantasia Festival. However, you will see that I have other posts planned that aren’t all about movies in case you followed this blog for some of the other hobbies that I have and share around here! I have a lot of stuff planned from books to TV series to gardening and other cool stuff. Plus, most of the projects are still going on so busy but fun stuff coming up! 🙂

Let’s check out whats been going on this past month!

Family Visit

Le Cartet

Last month, I had some family come to visit. We ended up going to one of my favorite breakfast restaurants in Old Montreal called Le Cartet. I’ve probably already talked about it before. Either way, they loved it and its always a great time. Most of my family has moved away from Montreal so its always so fun to have visit and catch up.

Battle of Ingredients: St-Jean BBQ

battle of ingredients

Check out the full post HERE.

Our first summer BBQ of this year was on the St-Jean Baptiste day for Battle of Ingredients. We have decided to lower the frequency just for less stress however, it still a ton of fun to get together and hang out. I actually have some fun ideas for next time if it happens to BBQ again (which I believe it is for now). It was a tad rainy this long weekend but it didn’t bother us too much.

Canada Day, Heat Wave & Pool Time

Pool time

Shameless selfie time! Sorry about that but I didn’t really take a lot of pictures of swimming. Haha! Good news is that the pool is FINALLY opened after last year’s absolute nightmare. Everything seems to be going well and all the credit goes to my husband figuring it all out. Lucky because it was a record-breaking weekend hitting well above the 40s degrees Celsius. We don’t have air conditioning system so we just rigged our unit with a fan to get the cool air around the house. Luckily it worked pretty well. Along with time in the pool, it was a lot of fun! I’m one of those people who love water. It makes me so happy when I’m just in water or near water hence why I love hiking and being near rivers, lakes, creeks, streams, and especially waterfalls!

Montreal Comiccon 2018

Montreal Comiccon

You can the recap of Montreal Comiccon HERE.

I am so grateful to get the media pass again this year for Montreal Comiccon. For the first year, I angled one week of my vacation here so I actually went for all three days of the comiccon weekend. It was a ton of fun. Maybe a little crazy to get all the coverage done in a timely fashion for That Moment In but it all was finished and I thought it turned it pretty alright. There was a lot of see and the Q&A was absolutely awesome. I actually am still working on getting some of the Q&A audio edited for my own channel but if you want to hear the audio for Shadow of the Tomb Raider Q&A and understand French, its on the Game Warp channel and for your convenience, the video below.

Dinner with Friends

La Fuschia

Vacation is the perfect time to catch up with friends. The first dinner was a meet-up with Phoebe and her family before the opening film of Fantasia Festival. We finally had my husband go try out their best-kept secret restaurant called Fuschia at Lasalle College. Its never disappointed and let me tell you, the meal was fantastic. So I’ll have that post go up finally since I’ve been respecting their desire to keep it a best-kept secret but they gave me the okay for this time. 😉

Restaurant Bohemia

Second dinner was just yesterday. My monthly hangout with the girl friends have been a lot less this year because everyone is just so busy with different transitions and personal life and whatnot. We finally met up for a dinner at this little Czech restaurant called Restaurant Bohemia. I’ll have a full post on it also going up soon. It’ll be little things to cut between all the movie reviews in case you aren’t here for that.

Fantasia Film Festival 2018

Fantasia Film Festival Fantasia Film Festival

Fantasia Film Festival is officially in town. Like last year, I had a media pass approved and so incredibly grateful for it. I have a fairly intense schedule the starts up next week. I only managed to fit in two movies as I try to get a lot of my house stuff done before the intensity really kicks up. You know, real life needs to be taken care of. I felt a little bit bad of skipping out a lot of the screenings this weekend but life doesn’t stop for this even if I love it so very much.

However, two reviews have already been up. You can check it out below

Nightmare Cinema
Playing Hard

The next two and a half weeks is going to be intense. I plan to review about 20+ films in total so next week alone, there are currently 11 screenings planned tentatively so if it all pans out, it’ll be my busiest week of the festival and I’ll get the reviews uploaded. All reviews will also be over at That Moment In. Actually, we are aiming for almost full coverage at That Moment In because of some arrangements. So head over there and check out what David has going on over there as he reviews some other movies at Fantasia that I won’t be able to make it to like this one:

La Nuit a Dévoré le Monde (The Night Eats the World)

I will retweet all of those reviews so either subscribe to That Moment In to not miss out or just follow me on Twitter @tranquildreams_

As for what’s planned, here is a list of the movies I’m aiming to go see in alphabetical order :

Anna & the Apocalypse
Big Brother
Bleach
Cam
Fireworks
Kasane
Knuckleball
La Quinceneara
Laplace’s Witch
Luz
Nightshifter
Our House
The Outlaws
Pledge
Searching
Under the Silver Lake
The Vanished

I’m hoping to fit some more in there but I doubt that sounds remotely possible as my actual paying job will be hitting some crazy work phase by the end of July. Gotta pay the bills after all 😉 Still, I’m more than happy with the schedule here and if it all works out, I’ll already be super pleased! I have a rule to have quality instead of quantity so excuse me if some double day film watching days have a little delay in the review going up.

Cute Kitty Pic

cat

Thats it for this “Weekly” Adventures!
What have you been up to?
Any cool events going on where you are? Some fun summer plans? Perhaps vacation in the horizon?

Battle of Ingredients #8 St-Jean Baptiste Summer BBQ 2018

battle of ingredients

Welcome back to another Battle of Ingredients! Summer is here and our Quebec provincial day was this past weekend so what better way than to meet up and do a little barbecue with friends and get back into the Battle of Ingredients action, right?

Drinks

Alcohol

Main Meal

We’ve done a few barbecues now for Battle of Ingredients and to make things easier this time, my lovely co-host and friend Phoebe (Starry Traveler’s Road) took care of the meats saying that she found a spot near her that supports local businesses and we love to do that. This stuff is from Fruiterie Boucherie Longueuil.

They pretty much sell barbecue boxes and she tried the Econo Mix which is $90 worth of meats and potatoes and such. Here it is!

Now for the unpacking of what is inside and preparation she did. Here you go!

And the first batch into the grill…

And finally, the results of the taking turns of cooking between the husbands and Phoebe, while I took care of their little one and helped carry the umbrella as it was raining. My skill sets unfortunately don’t extend to barbecuing so I left it to the experts. Here is how it turned out – hopefully I didn’t forget anything.

BBQ

BBQ meats

BBQ

Chicken leg

BBQ

BBQ Foil packs

The box itself is a lovely assortment. The seasoned meat was really good. There was a good variety to share. It provided a lot of food. The meats were pretty fresh. It was a good choice to not have to worry about the preparation ourselves and just be able to get something ready to just pop onto a foil and cook on the grill. It was a smart and efficient choice for Phoebe and I’m totally supportive of it. She mentioned that there are other things to substitute in the boxes and other choices and whatnot that we could try so maybe we will talk about that in the next barbecue.

Dessert

Dessert

With that said, my job was desserts. I made some Rhubarb Apple Tarts. It was a super simple recipe. I bought tarts from the grocery store since making pastry is still one of those things that I haven’t quite figured out well enough yet. Its a work in progress. Rhubarb is fresh from the garden and I used Cortland apples. It was an attempt to balance the acidity of the rhubarb a little.

The recipe for the filling was taken from here: http://www.coffeeandcrumpets.com/apple-and-rhubarb-galette/

This recipe had more than 12 tarts worth of filling so if you do intend to try it out, just keep that in mind.

Battle of Ingredients

The tarts turned out pretty well. They were very cinnamon-y and I think it had to do with the fact that it wasn’t in a galette but used in a tart. Although to be fair, when making apple desserts usually, there is some cinnamon. I thought they turned out pretty good since I don’t have an issue with cinnamon.

Overall

This was a lovely choice. The BBQ box made our lives a little easier. The cooking still took a long time just with the sheer amount of items in it and the variety and different cooking times and such. However, it is a good idea. The tarts turned out how I wanted them to and I think in general everyone enjoyed it well enough. Fruit tarts are always tricky especially since we have an array of allergies to take into consideration between our friends, Phoebe and myself. Hopefully by the next BBQ, I will have more vegetable harvests to work with to give it even more of a personal touch.

Before we finish, you will notice that the Battle of Ingredients will officially decrease in frequency just a little which is already in effect, due to busy schedules and just the need to not overstretch our time. It was a decision I needed to make for myself. However, we are still chugging along and planning for the August meet-up after this one.

Have you started your grills and enjoyed the first BBQ?
What do you like to make?