Profile

spilk

More cook than baker, maybe because I don't like a lot of rules...
Cooking is soothing for me, and I also love to entertain people.

  • Location: Toronto, Canada
  • Favorite foods: Italian, Indian, simple roasted chicken, roadside veggies, cedar-planked trout, scrambled eggs...must stop!
  • Last bite on earth: I would like to transition from this world with the taste of milk chocolate melting in my mouth.

Tomato Bounty Week: Stuffed Cherry Tomatoes With Bacon, Parmesan, and Parsley

I made these last night, and baked them at 350° for about 20 minutes. All I can say is the crowd went wild.Maybe it was the ridiculously chilly weather we've been enduring here in Toronto, but I think a bit of oven time certainly didn't take away from their sheer deliciousness. Great recipe!

Tomato Bounty Week: Stuffed Cherry Tomatoes With Bacon, Parmesan, and Parsley

I am going to make this tomorrow. Wondering if they might be enhanced by a bit of time under the broiler? Thoughts?

Everything You Need to Know to Start Baking Awesome Bread

Every year I say: this is the year I make bread. And I still haven't. But -- this column could be a game changer! Thanks.

Knife sharpening for lefties


Thanks everyone. Great insight!

CakeSpy: Cadbury Creme Egg in Hole Toast

My dad used to call it "Tinker Toast." He was first-generation Irish. Not matter what it's called, I loves me some!

What will you make for Easter?

Lamb chops. Marinated for a few hours in garlic, rosemary, balsamic, pepper, and some olive oil--grilled. Drooling already. Not sure about sides other than asparagus.

Deviled eggs

I like them topped with fresh chives.
But...@Zinnia1... a deviled eggs bar!!!!! What a fabulous idea! And I will certainly try bacon in the very near future.

Culinary land mines

Instant potatoes. In anything. Ick factor x 10!

Open Thread: White Chocolate, Yay or Nay?

Nay. Will not eat it. And I LOVE dark and milk chocolate.

The New Ben and Jerry's 'Cores' are Pretty Mindblowingly Delicious

@ag32o8 - it makes perfect sense to go cross-border shopping for this. Sooo disappointed it's not available in Canada yet. I might just have to shuffle off to Buffalo with a cooler!

Trader Joe's is Like a Bad Boyfriend...

It's destination shopping for me. If I lived in the US, I'd spend a fortune there! Probably just as well it's not in Canada. (who am I trying to kid? I'd meet it at the border with a parade!)

What food would you miss most as a vegan?

Eggs. And cheese. And of course, bacon.

I'm quitting the site

Very interesting points of view expressed here. Which is what I expect from Serious Eaters. Like any community, many different people come here to be heard and to share.
Basic civility should not be a casualty.
I am an omnivore (as in I'll try almost anything) but I respect other ways of eating and cooking.
I like to think of Serious Eat as a big smorgasbord. Some things I'll load up on, others I'll pass up.
Viva lively, respectful debate!

Amsterdam Eats

It's not Dutch per se, but Amsterdam has lots of great Indonesian food - a colonial legacy, much like the Brits have great Indian food.

Poll: How Do You Season Your Slice?

Lots and lots of freshly-ground pepper. MMMMMM

Do you get specific toppings on pizza from different places?

I do. One place I go vegetarian - thin crust, pesto, sundried tomatoes and goat cheese. And another place I get the Canadian classic: mushroom, pepperoni and bacon. Both great, just depends how I'm feeling.

Supermarket Sweets: We Try the New Cherry and Red Velvet M&M's

Shuddering, just reading about them. Thanks for tasting them so we don't have to!

Stress-Baking: Any good recipe suggestions?

Love making my cousin Marlene's banana chocolate chip muffins. Can be made in one bowl and I can delude myself that they're healthy because of the fruit content. And I hear you about the brownies!

How to flambe?

Thanks so much, Serious Eaters! Great advice and safety tips! This is what makes this community so great. Now I have to figure out something to cook in my first flambe experience.

Craving Replacement Fail

@Traveller -- I remember those! It's the tradition to give those out to your classmates on your birthday. Gotta go back there and wear stretchy clothes to eat all the wonderful stuff!

Craving Replacement Fail

Many (MANY!) years ago, when I was in university, I lived in res for the first couple of years. All I had was an electric kettle, and I drank copious cups of dreadful instant coffee, sometimes supplemented with a few spoonsful of hot chocolate mix. Never again.

What Alcoholic Drinks Do You Hate?

Anything made with blue Curacao for both the taste, and because it looks like aftershave. Shivering just thinking about it.

What did Santa bring you?

I got a mandoline. And a nasty cold. But after it goes away, I can't wait to play. Also got a small electric grill, and some fancy oil, vinegar and kick-ass hot sauce. I'm thrilled with everything (except the cold).
All in all a lovely Christmas, with drives up north that felt like I was in a winter wonderland postcard.

Peanut Butter Thumbprint Cookies?

Here you go. Just brought in a giant batch to my colleagues, and they swarmed it. Annual tradition!


Peanut Blossoms

Ingredients
- 1 cup white sugar
- 1 cup brown sugar
- 1 cup margarine or butter
- 1 cup smooth peanut butter
- 2 eggs
- 1/4 cup milk
- 2 tsps. vanilla
- 3 ½ cups flour
- 2 tsps. baking soda
- 1 tsp. salt
- small bowl granulated sugar
- lots of bulk rosebuds (or Hershey’s Kisses in a pinch, but Rosebuds are better)

Directions
- preheat oven to 350 F
- in large bowl, cream together sugars, margarine & peanut butter
- beat in eggs, milk & vanilla
- in separate bowl, sift together flour, baking soda & salt
- mix with butter mixture to make a soft dough
- shape into 1” diameter balls, then roll each ball in granulated sugar
- place on ungreased cookie sheet
- bake 10 - 12 mins.
- remove from over & immediately press a Rosebud on top of each cookie

Trader Joe's Now Sells Poutine, and it's Awesome

@Toddlessness.
1) pronunciation: poo-TEEN (stress on the last syllable)
2) fork - those molten cheese curds and gravy can do damage
3) traditionally it's sold at a chip truck, eaten out of a cardboard or styrofoam container, so usually on its own or with a pop (Canadian for soda)
4) but, it's versatile. you could tart it up and serve tiny portions as an appetizer, for example
But really, the best way is outside, on a chilly day at a chip truck.

Knife sharpening for lefties

This might be a foolish question, but when you get knives sharpened, should you tell the sharpener that you're left-handed? Does it make a difference? Is there a sharper side to knives? And is it different, depending on which hand your favour? As always, thanks

What is YOUR kryptonite?

I'll start. I am utterly powerless when faced with onion rings. The rational me realizes that they are loaded with fat and salt, but they make me weak. Defenceless. But enough about the food I have no strength to resist. What about you?

How to flambe?

I watch a lot of shows on TV where the cooks (somehow) swirl their pans and a nice little flame appears. It looks impressive. But my question is firstly: how do they do that safely? And secondly, other than the drama, what practical purpose does it serve? Finally redid my kitchen and am now the happy owner of a gas stove. Could this be a Kenji question? Any help would be much appreciated!

What's your favourite "road food"?

Let's face it, North America is a driving culture -- both for work and pleasure.
So, what do you eat when you're on the road?
Do you bring along healthy snacks or seek out roadside diners?
I tend to have the best intentions -- fruit, nuts, jujubes, and then fall victim to something fried and delicious along the way...
How about you?

Doy you do blue (food)?

Am I the only one who is kinda repulsed by blue foods? AND drinks, but that's a whole different story from my foolish past. I saw a recipe the other day for a blue velvet cake and felt a chill go down my spine? Serious Eaters, what's YOUR opinion?

How to oven roast a sirloin-tip roast?

I'm excited to be hosting a dinner party Saturday night in honour of a great friend. I bought a sirloin tip roast. Not the most expensive cut, but I understand that, if treated right, it will yield a tender and tasty roast. I've read all kinds of advice: start really high temp, then down to 350..cook it low and slow the whole time...Does anyone have any advice? Thanks so much, Serious Eaters!

How will you handle higher food prices?

It's been a very dry summer over much of North America, and there are reports that, consequently, food prices will rise because of poor crops. What will YOU do eat well and healthily? I'm going to freeze loads of fresh veggies so I can enjoy them in the depths of winter!

Food souvenir from NYC

I am Big Apple bound this coming weekend (yay!) My question is: what sort of food souvenir should I buy? For example, in Portugal I brought back some wonderful olive oil. Can you recommend anything I can bring back to Toronto from New York?

Great rooftop patios in NYC?

What trip to the Big Apple would be complete without a great cocktail (at least one!). Can anyone recommend a great rooftop patio? I'm staying in Midtown, but it could be anywhere. Looking for view, ambience and great booze! thanks!

Syrup help...pretty please!

I was recently at a fancy restaurant and had a fabulous cocktail. I checked the menu online and it has gin, tonic, soda, cucumber...and..:"rosemary lemon syrup." Any idea of how I might make this syrup.
I'm trying to replicate it for a wee party I'm having next Friday night for the Royal Wedding. Served in china teacups, of course. I will be resplendent in a big hat that looks like meringue.
Any help will greatly help my cheesy fun.

Lisbon restaurant advice sought

In a couple of weeks, I'll be jetting off to Portugal for a couple of weeks, and would love some recommendations for restaurants in Lisbon. We're renting an apartment downtown, but will definitely want to go out for dinner. Don't want to break the bank, but want good local food -- including seafood.
Can't wait to trade Toronto's snowbanks and slush for Europe's sunniest capital!
Thanks! (obrigado...learning the basics!)

How do you like your Grilled Cheese?

Some people are purists and think that any embellishment detracts from the simple gooey goodness of a plain sandwich.

Others like a little something to enhance. I admit to loving a grilled cheese with thin slices of dill pickle added to the cheese filling. Then I dip in ketchup.

What's YOUR favourite way with this classic sandwich?

Fava Beans - how to cook 'em?

Just bought some fresh fava beans still in their pods and realized I don't have a clue what to do with them. Any ideas, people?
Something other than "with liver and a nice chianti"...?
Many thanks, as always!

Red & White Canada Day dessert suggestions?

It's my job to bring a dessert (for about 6 people) to a Canada Day barbecue this Thursday. It's being held on the rooftop deck of my friend's downtown Toronto. We'll be able to see the fireworks later, and the conversation and the wine will flow...But I digress...
Any idea of a dessert that I might bring that features the colours of the flag: red and white? Bear in mind that I'll probably be carrying on the streetcar!
Thanks!

Washington DC eating????

I will be travelling to the Washington region (Alexandria, Virginia) at the end of this month, and am looking for advice on good restaurants. Mid-price range, that won't break the bank, but are still yummy.
Can anybody suggest something for a winter-weary Canuck? Maybe something regional?
Many thanks!