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. 🙂

Dinner: Restaurant Le Sanglier (Boucherville, Quebec)

Its time for another restaurant outing! 🙂

Yet another Tuango coupon approaching its expiration and because of overlooking the details, it turned out to be a huge debate on when to go. Week nights are harder to manage around. Luckily, I ended up inviting my mom and she came along with me. Its not her normal type of food but spending time with her and chatting outside of both of places is a good change of scenery. This coupon was for a rather new restaurant established in 2015 called Restaurant Le Sanglier. For those who don’t know French, Sanglier means wild boar. Surprisingly, you will see that we didn’t order any boar and I’ll tell you why in just a little bit.

Restaurant Le Sanglier

Located in the suburbs of Boucherville and embedded in a restaurant or lounge area near a lake that I’ve talked about when we make the ice cream outings with friends, its not a huge restaurant but the decor is very delicate. It reflects the food that you should get.  The inside eating area doesn’t seat a lot of people but somehow it still remains cozy to be there. However, oing in the summer, most customers prefer to sit outside on the terrace. The evening we went was beautiful and the terrace was packed, so we had our meal inside.

Cocktail

Restaurant Le Sanglier

Limonade a Charlotte: lemonade, vodka, maple, basil

Normally when I’m out with my mom, I wouldn’t order a cocktail (with the exception of when we went on a cruise last year). This is a different situation mostly because I did buy a coupon that was paying $20 for the value of $40 so I try to be a little bit more generous with my spending and really giving everything a try. I ended up choosing the Limonade a Charlotte because it had some refreshing qualities from lemonade itself to basil and I personally like vodka based cocktails. Let me tell you: it did not disappoint. I liked it quite a bit actually, enough for me to think that the other choices on the menu deserve a shot as well when I come back next time.

Starter: Bread

Restaurant le Sanglier

I usually don’t talk about bread. Restaurant Le Sanglier serves their bread in a rather unique way. I don’t know a lot of people that still use those pins that we punch paper through to keep track of loose paper, but they used that for the bread. The brown paper bag also has more bread in it. Its definitely a cute way to serve it. Not to mention, the bread was delicious. It could’ve been warmed up a little but I thought it was a good start to the meal.

Main Meals

Onto the main meal, the coupon covered the main meals dishes while they also serve little sharing platters which had quite a bit of choice as well. The main dishes menu had about six choices. Three of those change around as they are the catch of the day. Is that what you call it? There’s the Dish of the Day, I guess and the other is maybe the chef’s special or something like that. Regardless, the catch of the day was Salmon Fillet. The dish of the day was paella with risotto and finally the chef’s special was…something else that I don’t remember right now.

Here’s what we got:

Restaurant Le Sanglier

Catch of the Day (My mom’s choice)

My mom enjoyed her meal. The salmon was done well. Underneath was a squash puree which she also liked.

Restaurant Le Sanglier

Surf ‘n Turf (My choice)

I’m not much of a Surf ‘N Turf girl usually but this time when I ordered, I tried a new strategy to ask the waitress to suggest. She suggested the catch of the day, which my  mom already took. Then she suggested the Paella, which has risotto so I couldn’t eat it. After that, it was throwdown between the Beef Bavette (is that even the world in English?) and Surf ‘N Turf and honestly, I’d go for something that I can’t make so much at home. This dish is really great. The scallops are done perfectly and the little pieces of beef are are well cooked. There’s a decent bit of veggies. They take good care in having veggies, especially asparagus that are not mushy but have a little crunchy texture to it. I think the beef was a little salty but other than that, there was a clear thought of how to balance the flavors in the dish here and I liked it a lot.

Why we didn’t order boar…

Its time for the curiously funny story. So, you know, I asked the waitress for suggestion. The weird part is that she suggested  most of the menu except for the Wild Boar Flank with Sweet and Sour Sauce. Honestly, I was curious for it since the name of the restaurant is literally wild boar. Since she didn’t suggest it, I figured I’d skip over it. Its just incredibly curious to me.

Overall…

Restaurant Le Sanglier is in a nice location and cozy decor. The cocktails are good and the food is delicious. The service took a little longer because we were inside and sometimes it does feel that when we use these online deals that we’re less taken care of but then there was only two waitresses and our waitress was very nice. Its definitely a place to check out if you are in the area. I’m definitely going to head back with my husband and some friends to give it another go and try something new. 🙂