Dessert: Classic Brownies

Mother’s Day was this past weekend. My husband made a request to bake some brownies for my mother-in-law.

Last year’s Food Network magazine came incredibly handy as it was all about chocolatey desserts. This is the recipe that I used. Do note that this is the full recipe that they had and I halved most of the ingredients as I used a square pan which was maybe 8 by 8 inch or so.

CLASSIC BROWNIES
(from Food Network magazine Chocolate Lover’s Cookbook)

Brownies

Makes: 36

Ingredients
Cooking spray
2 sticks unsalted butter
4 ounces semisweet chocolate, chopped
2 cups sugar
4 large eggs
1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1/3 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
1/2 tsp salt

  1. Preheat the oven to 350F. Line a 9 by 13 inch baking dish with foil, leaving a 2 inch overhang on two sides; coat the foil with cooking spray. Melt the butter and chocolate in a large saucepan over low heat; let cool slightly. Stir in sugar and eggs. Whisk in the flour, cocoa powder and salt.
  2. Spread the batter in the prepared pan. Bake until a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean, 30 to 35 minutes. Let cool on a rack, then cut into bars.

The only substitute used here was the semisweet chocolate was instead semisweet chocolate chips. Also, I forgot to set low heat when melting the butter and chocolate so not sure if that changed the consistency. It might have since I felt like the recipe didn’t make as thick as I’d like but it did rise a little in the oven.

However, we did leave before my in-laws had a chance to try this out. My husband told me they said it was delicious and liked it. My only concern was not that it wouldn’t taste good but that while adjusting the recipe to a lesser portion, it would change the consistency. It did look like it had a decent consistency if not thinner than usual brownies.

 Do you like making brownies?
My next project is to make vegan brownies. Hopefully I’ll work on that soon! 🙂

My Weekly Adventures #43

Yesterday I already did the Mother’s Day recap, you can all head over to check that out HERE if you missed it!

The last two weeks went by in a flash, pretty much like 2017 has been. It hasn’t all been sunshine and rainbows (figuratively and literally), seeing as Montreal had a state of emergency issued over the weekend for the amount of rain we had been getting and flooding in various districts. It was a mess to say the very least. However, this coming week is looking up. We’re supposed to get a ton of sunny days and great weather finally! 🙂

Game Warp & Youtube

Perhaps one of the biggest things to go on in the last two weeks is the move from That Moment In’s Youtube to Game Warp’s own Youtube. It has taken us a year to make this decision but for us, despite having to restart on the subscriber count, its a fresh start. There were many reasons into doing this. We’re still under That Moment In and write our articles under that but as my post HERE explained, it opens up the option for us to make other types of videos. Of course, if you were subscribed over at That Moment In for gaming and didn’t see my notice, head on over to our Youtube HERE and subscribe to not miss out on what’s coming up. We are aiming to have content every day but we are only two people and rely heavily on what we have access too so it might not always be playthroughs on new games however we try the best we can to stay current or at least dive into the indie scene and give devs their space or highlight games that we’ve tried out no matter what they are.

For more info on this, I urge you to click on the link above to read more. I don’t want to be too repetitive for those who have read that post. Game Warp is a ton of fun but if you aren’t into gaming, that’s alright, I’m still here chatting up on everything else that you enjoy! 🙂

Cirque du Soleil –  Volta

Volta

Volta

Two Fridays ago, my girl friends and I had a night out to go to see Cirque du Soleil Volta. I love Cirque du Soleil. Two years ago, I went to go see Kurios. Its probably somewhere on the blog, probably a My Weekly Adventures a while back. We didn’t get really great seats and the story was a little abstract but there were some great stunts. The highlight of the show were the BMX bike stunts and man, it was exhilarating. There was one where it was a gymnast hung in the air by her hair and that was fantastic as well. It was funny and the music was really good, which usually is the highlight of the show. It was rainy but still very fun.

Birthday Bash (not mine)

My friend and their little one along with Mother’s Day was celebrated all together with a bunch of friends at a great restaurant. Here’s all the food on the menu which I or other people had. It was super delicious and it was very fun. Obviously, to respect their privacy, I’m not sharing any pictures with other people whoever, it was a fun Friday night. I was pretty tired however it was nice to go out and chat with other people.

73% Dark Chocolate by Chocolat Favoris

Chocolat Favoris

I’m not sponsored or anything by Chocolats Favoris (wouldn’t that be the dream, right?). However, we went there with a big family gathering over the weekend for chocolate and I found this 73% Dark Chocolate. Oh my goodness, this is just heavenly. I thought 70% chocolate was pretty delish but 73% apparently is the absolute perfection.

Cute Kitty Pic

Upcoming:

  • Battle of Ingredients
  • Double Features

That’s it for this Weekly Adventures!
What have you been up to?

Battle of Ingredients #2: Maple Syrup

Welcome to Round 2 of Battle of Ingredients!
If you missed the first round, you can find it here. I will be putting something on the side or above so that it’ll be easier to track soon.

This month’s Battle of Ingredients is all about maple syrup! Why? Because here in our lovely province of Quebec, we have the cabane a sucre (aka sugar shack) tradition. Maple syrup is a big deal around this parts (and apparently also in Riverdale according to the new TV series). It was a no brainer for myself and Phoebe that it would be our choice ingredient as well as trying out a new formula of doing a collaborated full course meal. All our dishes had maple syrup so lets just say, we were in for a sugar rush.

Let’s check out our menu, along with the wines we used to pair with it (although one of them we didn’t end up drinking…yet).

Wine

Wine

We drank the Kung Fu Girl which is one of my favorite wines. Apparently, it has somewhat of a sour taste which I never really thought about but always found it smooth. Regardless, hopefully we’ll keep the Fetzer in our fridge till the next Battle.

Appetizer – Kim

Bourbon Maple Glazed Chicken Wings

Bourbon Maple Glazed Chicken Wings

Recipe via Pinterest: http://www.simplyrecipes.com/recipes/bourbon_maple_glazed_chicken_wings/

A very simple recipe to put together in general although you do need to simmer the sauce before putting it on the chicken wings and then have to simmer again to thicken it. I somehow managed to get it thicker the first time so that it wasn’t necessary to simmer again. I did have extra sauce however it was covered enough so I put it to the side in case anyone wanted anymore. This one was delicious and definitely a hit. Perhaps it had to do with the fact that I used our good bourbon without knowing it. Whatever the reason, these turned out much better than I expected and honestly, I kind of want to make another batch already.

From our friends: Not dry at all with the sauce, and it matched well. No extra sauce needed for me!

Main Meal + Side – Phoebe

Prosciutto Maple Salmon

Prosciutto Maple Salmon

Recipe via Pinterest: http://gardeninthekitchen.com/prosciutto-maple-salmon/

Phoebe chose this recipe off Pinterest. We don’t usually get the chance to use prosciutto frequently and never had thought to use to wrap around fish and yet, it came together really nicely. She hadn’t worked with dill before and I haven’t been a fan either, however we do have dill lovers at the table. This came together really nicely. Phoebe was a little nervous about the whole grilling part before baking it and we timed it all very nice to serve this and the sides, which we will talk about below.

From our friends: I personally find the dill to match well with the fish. Again, not dry the way it was made, the only slight annoyance was that the prociutto is hard to cut through, so putting any sort of pressure would crush the salmon under… But with patience of sliding your knife back and forth, it’s perfect.

Maple Syrup Roasted Brussel Sprouts

Maple Syrup Roasted Brussel Sprouts

Recipe via Pinterest: http://www.thewholesomedish.com/maple-syrup-roasted-brussels-sprouts/

Huge fan of brussel sprouts here, I found this recipe for Phoebe and she was totally into it, which is great. I’ve always wondered how maple syrup in Brussel Sprouts would work and actually it was the one the absorbed the maple syrup enough to actually taste it the most. It was much more subtle in the salmon for example. However, in the balance of the meal, it worked well.

Dessert

Chewy Maple Cookies

Chewy Maple Cookies

Recipe via Pinterest: http://www.cleverlysimple.com/chewy-maple-cookies/

I decided on making these cookies very last minute. Like an hour before our cooking meet-up. Fact is, I was going to make Maple Ice but that needed Maple Water and Ice Cream Maker, both things that I don’t have or haven’t figured out how to use yet. Then there was the idea of making little maple syrup tarts but that was really complex with heating the pizza stone plate in the oven beforehand and the worry that it would just fail because I was changing this complicated tart recipe from a pie pan to little tarts. Anyways, point is cookies are the safe bet and thankfully, it worked well to not hog up the oven and we were able to get everything we needed done and ready on track.

From our friends: Cookies were good! Wasn’t dry, but wasn’t butter fest either! Maybe it would be even better with some nut in it like cashew, but then again, might alter the taste… But it was great.

Maple Flavored Popcorn (Bad Monkey)

Bad Monkey Maple Flavored Popcorn

In addition, Phoebe brought this Bad Monkey brand Maple Syrup flavored popcorn to match with the theme. I don’t eat a lot of popcorn for health issues but I did try a few and it was pretty delicious. Phoebe did find it a little on the sweet side however our friends did like this one as well. they actually put the popcorn and the cookie together and apparently, it went well together particularly because of the contrast in textures.

That’s it for this Battle!
Maple Syrup was a fun adventure and on all fronts this was a win.
We learned some new recipes and had a great time with friends.
Next month’s Battle is still deciding what will be the star(s) of the show! 

Perhaps this will be the structure from now on as it is easier to get together an acceptable meal but we will shift the courses around to who is responsible next time.
We will see…like I said in the first round, a work in progress. If you have any suggestions, do share with us. 🙂

Recap: Miss Fresh #9

As I’ve been talking about recently, its been a busy time so what better week than to order another Miss Fresh box. The last one was just two weeks ago. However, this menu fit what we liked so why not, right?

Let’s get cooking! 🙂

Miss Fresh #9

Miss Fresh

Shrimp Rolls with Peanut Sauce

Miss Fresh

Shrimp Rolls with Peanut Sauce

This box was quite the adventure since I found my cooking motivation early in the morning as I scrambled to get this together and prepare for heading out to work. Particularly the first two recipes were made in the early hours however, they did turn out pretty good. The first was this shrimp rolls. I used to my shrimp rolls with my best friend however, she always took point and I just had to put it together so learning how to make this felt great because I’m a huge fan of this plus Miss Fresh’s recipe avocado which is a really nice twist since I don’t eat raw veggies so my husband made them with the cabbage while I had a simple one with vermicelli, shrimps and avocado along with the peanut sauce. The peanut sauce was really awesome and really made this dish delicious.

Asian Tofu Stir-Fry

Asian Stir-fry

 The first two meals are very easy to make. In fact, they are delicious as well. I’m a huge fan of stir-fry and its not only because I’m Chinese and grew up with it. The idea of tossing a bunch of stuff together in a wok and it turning into a meal is efficient. Of course, it is never as simple as tossing it together but how to cook what and when. We don’t get a lot of tofu and my husband’s not a huge fan of mushroom although he does tolerate shitake mushrooms. This dish made the house smell so nice and it is incredibly easy to do. Maybe one of my faves Miss Fresh recipe.

Shepherd’s Pie with Cauliflower Topping

Miss Fresh

Miss Fresh

Shepherd’s Pie

My husband loves Shepherd’s Pie. I just never make it because its a bit of a hassle. I hate meals where I need to cook and then bake. As you see, I’m all about efficiency. Shepherd’s Pie also has that mashed potato aspect which only is good with a decent amount of milk or butter. While I digest butter, I know my husband prefers milk and then there’s the whole corn issue. My health is ridiculous, I know. The price for not taking better care when I was studying in university. Now I’m getting preachy, so I’ll stop and get back on track. However, this one does a nice twist with a mix of mashed potatoes and cauliflowers. I do like the texture of it even though it only uses butter. The minced meat is seasoned well and its all very tasty. Definitely one worth giving a go a second time.

Pork Tenderloin with Apples, Brussel Sprouts and Rice

Miss Fresh

After the searing part…

Miss Fresh

Pork Tenderloin with Apples & Brussel Sprouts

The pork tenderloin is pretty easy to put together and it does taste good with just coating with coriander and a spices blend (cinnamon and something else). The searing part after 10 minutes each side gets about that look up in the top picture. Sorry for the blur. However, we’re not much for seared foods so I decided to cook it through instead in making the veggies portion. It turned out for the better and I really liked this one a lot as well. The apples add a little acidity to it that works well with the dish. I’m not huge on the apple cider vinegar part. I’ve tried it out a few times in some other Miss Fresh recipes and it adds a weird taste to it that takes time to like. Overall though, this one is good. I’d redo it but maybe change out the apples or maybe use something else than vinegar.

Overall…

Miss Fresh doesn’t fail us. I’d venture to say that this is one of the better boxes because all the meals were winners even if I would have tweaked it to match our tastes a little better. Shrimp Rolls definitely take the win for this one. That peanut sauce is to die for and the rolls are good even in its simplest form. I’m actually craving it as I write this up (not only because it is during my lunch break).

Brunch: Foiegwa (Montreal, Canada)

Another weekend out. One of my awesome friends took me out for a belated birthday brunch as he always does every year. This year, we went to try out Foiegwa which is a diner/restaurant located near the Atwater Market in Montreal. Its in a pretty convenient location and we’ve never been before.

Let’s check it out!

FOIEGWA

Menu

Foiegwa

Tea

Foiegwa

Not my usual green tea but they did have the selection although they had run out of the green so I took Early Grey instead. Black tea isn’t my favorite but this one was pretty good.

Meals

Foiegwa

Ham Omelet

Foiegwa

Chicken and Waffles

Ham omelet was my meal. I broke out of the normal two eggs and whatever side which is my usual go-to. I do like ham quite a bit but I don’t eat it a lot. The omelet was really good with a good balance of seasoning. There was an apple chutney of sorts which tasted pretty good. The potato wedges were also very tasty.

My friend had the Chicken and Waffles. The chicken looked moist and he said it was. His feedback was that the meal itself was good, both the chicken and waffles. However, he would have liked to have the maple syrup on the side instead so that he could be the judge of how much to put on it.

Overall, the service was decent. It is a small joint and pretty busy on the weekends so do expect a wait. I don’t mind waiting for good food so that wasn’t an issue. The place is convenient and the food was good. The parking is a little harder and really relies on your luck but we were also lucky so everything worked out for us. I definitely recommend this place. The menu is quite extensive and I’d definitely go back to try out something else there when I have time.

Cabane à Sucre: Érabliere au Palais Sucré (Mont Saint Gregoire, Quebec)

After a few years ago’s little sugar shack incident that left quite the sour taste in our mouth, which you can find here, my girl friends and I decided to head out to give it another try but of course, at another location. With that experience in our pockets, we made sure to get how everything worked here before even beginning the meal. I’m getting ahead of myself already.

Let’s get ready to sugar off! 🙂

Érabliere au Palais Sucré

erabliere au palais sucre

The site itself was really nice. There were some farm animals to look at. There were also swing sets around a little fire and a playground area for the kids. Inside a house was a the tir a sirop which is a little maple syrup thing that I’ll show you later. We had a bit of time to walk around while we waited for our table to be available since we got there a little earlier than the reservation. It was a beautiful day so made the walk very enjoyable.

Now for the meal!

 

erabliere au palais sucre

Pea Soup

Erabliere au Palais Sucre

Main meal

In the main meal, there’s the scrambled eggs, bacon, ham, sausages, fried potatoes and cooked potatoes, coleslaw, beans, and the crunchy thing. Most of these have maple syrup already but you can always add more maple syrup since that is the point.

erabliere au palais sucre

Dessert

All the desserts had milk so I couldn’t have any of it but my friends said that it was incredibly sweet so it was very filling as well. There’s some sugar pie and mini pancakes and little cakes and the pudding.

Finally, after we left, it was time to use the ticket for the “tir au sirop” which is maple syrup on ice and you use a popsicle stick to roll it up to eat.

Erabliere au palais sucre

This is actually one of my favorite winter highlights and I love it a lot. Its pretty awesome. And this tasted really good. It is pure maple syrup so every place has a little variety and I like this place’s quite a bit.

A quick little outing but its always fun with my girl friends. It was a ton of fun and the meal was pretty good. Most of all, the service was very good. Our waitress tried her best to even offer options for the dessert when she knew that I couldn’t have any. I always appreciate these little gestures.

A fun little outing!
Have you been to Sugar Shack (aka Cabane a Sucre)?

My Weekly Adventures #40

The incredibly work-related April is upon us! April always is the month that murders us at my work, so if it gets a little sporadic in the next few weeks, I apologize in advance. However, it has been a whirlwind of busy for the first quarter of 2017. However, everything’s been going pretty great. I love being a workaholic especially if it means working with a ton of great people and getting to do all the things I love. The last two weeks of March has been pretty awesome. I did manage to just get in those new segments despite being a little backtracked by the trip I took to Toronto. In fact this is where I’ll start this Weekly Adventures segment!

Toronto ComiCon (with Drew’s Movie Reviews)

Toronto

For the second year in a row, I went down to Toronto and met up with Drew, my fantastic blogathon co-host for the Toronto ComiCon weekend. We jam-packed our schedule with tons of panels and went to a party and even found time to eat some good food and visit a beautiful touristic attraction, Casa Loma. You can find the recap for ComiCon here, Casa Loma here and the Toronto haul here.

On that note, one of my prints are already framed! I’ll be framing the other two in the few weeks. Our office is going to look awesome! 🙂

2017 Parks Canada Discovery Pass

More geared towards my fellow Canadian readers, to celebrate 150th birthday of Canada, Parks Canada has offered up the Discovery pass which allows free access to National Parks along with some other centers and whatnot. You can find all the info on the Parks Canada site. I ordered this pass a few weeks ago and got it in the mail some time before or after the Toronto trip and we’re super excited to plan out some more hiking day trips this summer especially since we managed to pick up another set of hiking poles for myself also. We will eventually have to change the hiking boots soon but we’re still looking for a good pair. On that note, if any of you in Ontario or fellow Quebec residing bloggers or have visited and hiked, do tell us where you suggest.

Course Update: Guitar & Photography

Both the courses ended this week! At this point, I’m done with the Guitar course final assignment (yay! and why this is going up later) and preparing for the final assignment for Photography, continuing after this goes up. I did have to work overtime to play catch up. One of the few things I’ve realized happen when I lose a weekend to going away. I think it also is because I don’t own a laptop anymore and when I’m away, I don’t feel like working on my phone as much so its really just watching TV and relaxing, which is a good thing. Actually, it was very refreshing to recharge even if it took a while to recuperate. Does that make sense? I was tired but more motivated to write. Anyways, point is, courses are over and hopefully these great time management skills I’ve used this past month (for the most part) will stick around.

One New Segment FINALLY Live!

Battle of Ingredients

In case you missed it, my team-up with Phoebe of Starry Traveler’s Road for this new segment, Battle of Ingredients is finally live! If you missed it, you can find it HERE! We started simple but we’re going to be doing a hopefully monthly deal with this. Planning time to meet up and gathering up friends and then coming up with recipes all take time between our own work, blogging duties for myself and parental duties for Phoebe makes it all so hard to make this more frequent. However, I am quite pleased with how the post turned out. Hopefully you all are and will enjoy it.

Learning a New Tools: Canva

Would you look at the image for Battle of Ingredients? I actually learned about Canva a little while ago but I’m truly enjoying working with it to build simple images and giving the blog a more professional header image for various segments. I have one for Music Obsessions coming up tomorrow and working on one for the new segment. Also, I’m trying to get something together for the actual blog header.

Birthday Month

March is THE birthday month of our family. My in-laws and my husband and even myself has birthdays in the second half of March. My birthday was yesterday and I turned 31. It was a pretty calm day which is always great. There were a few a little things that bothered me for a short while but overall, it was pretty relaxing and efficient, which is great. My husband and I will celebrate this weekend by going to a movie, Ghost in the Shell, which I’ll probably have the review ready for Monday.

Cute Kitty Pic

Upcoming:

  • New Youtube project 
  • Ghost in the Shell review & more

What have you been up to? Anything new?