Saturday, 31 March 2012

Everyone Loves Bacon!

I am so thrilled that everyone is loving our new men's aprons. I have been hearing a lot of snorts from people when they see our Will Cook For Beer, and Feel like Bacon Love aprons, and everyone has been commenting how crazy their guys are about bacon. It is easy to amuse myself when I am thinking of new quotes for my aprons but sometimes I worry that not everyone will find me as funny as I find myself. Turns out that they do! Hurray for bacon and beer jokes!

Friday, 30 March 2012

Healthy Craft Show Snack

I am loving my time at the One of a Kind Show! It is always a wild frenzy getting set up and I am pooped and in need of a massage and a night of bad television when it is over, but meeting my customers and hearing people giggle over the aprons makes it all worthwhile.

The other day my friend dropped off amazing bars to help keep my energy up. Knowing that it is very easy to overload on sugar during these shows (The shortbread! The chocolate bark!) my friend made sure to find a super healthy recipe that was delicious. She passed on the recipe so that I can share it for the next time you need a yummy boost, craft show or no craft show.

Healthy Craft Show Bars
The base: Mix 1/3 cup margarine, 1/2 cup brown sugar and 1/2 cup each of whole wheat flour and bran and press into a 9 inch (un-greased) square baking pan. Bake in 350 degree oven for about 10 minutes until it starts to pull away from the sides of the pan a little. Let it cool.

Topping: In a small saucepan melt 1/4 cup organic natural peanut butter, 1/4 cup brown sugar, 2tbsp margarine over low heat. Remove from heat and stir in 2 eggs, 1 cup rolled oats and 1/2 cup dried chopped fruit (my friend added dried mangoes and cranberries, so yummy).

Spread mixture over base and bake for 20 minutes. Let cool and cut into squares.

Tuesday, 27 March 2012

Dandy Horse Magazine

Well. I have found the perfect way to avoid setting up for the One of a Kind Spring Craft Show. The show starts tomorrow and I am in the midst of a full on frenzy. It's bad timing that I have just discovered Dandy Horse Magazine, a magazine devoted to bike culture in Toronto. Swoon! It looks like it is chock full of inspiration, info and all things bike! I am dying to feast my eyes on the two wheeled eye candy and forget all about this craft show set up, but my booth awaits.

Friday, 23 March 2012

Protein Lunch

I felt like I really needed protein today. I think it is all the hustle and bustle of trying to prepare for The One of a Kind Craft Show. It can get a little overwhelming. It's not all fun and games and thinking of new sayings for my aprons to amuse myself. Organizing takes a lot of work, alas.

I know my accupunturist would wag her finger and tell me I need to eat more eggs. A hard boiled egg seems to be her solution to everything. The thing is, I am not a fan of eggs. I eat my required egg because the acupuncturist tells me so but I much prefer other sources of protein. Chickpeas for example. I love me some legumes. When I saw this recipe on Orangette, I knew I had found my power lunch. It couldn't be easier, with minimal ingredients and chock full of protein. With nary an egg in sight.

Glazed Lemon Cookies

The other day I was passing a fruit stand and noticed that they were selling packages of lemons for a mere buck! They must have been reaching the end of their shelf life but being a lover of all things citrus-y and tart I couldn't resist, knowing that I'd find a way to use them before they went moldy. Next thing you know I stumble upon a Martha Stewart recipe for glazed lemon cookies. It was obviously a sign. They will be the perfect fresh treat to enjoy now that spring is in the air.

Tuesday, 20 March 2012

Macaron Day!

Okay, does it get any better than this?

1. It is officially the first day of spring.
2. It is unbelievably gorgeous outside.
3. Toronto patisseries are giving out free macarons today!!!

Today is Macaron Day Toronto and local patisseries are giving out a free yummy macaron to anyone who mentions that they are celebrating Macaron Day TO. I don't think a prettier cookie exists. I love the pastel colours and how eating a macaron makes me feel like an adorable French girl. Maybe I need to don a beret, hop on my bike (I mean bicyclette ) and stop at a few of the participating shops. (See the map of participants here)

What makes this event even more special is that 25 % of any additional macarons bought will be donated to Red Door Family Shelter. Tres bien indeed.

Sunday, 18 March 2012

Men's Aprons Are Online!

You demanded it, we delivered! People have been asking us why we don't have aprons for men and we started ask ourselves, why not indeed? We know a lot of grill gods and brawny bakers with Y chromosomes. Who are we to deny them a funky fresh Domistyle apron? We put on our thinking caps and came up with some fun manly designs. Our kitchen brothers don't need to look like messy cavemen with food splattered all over them anymore! We are happy to announce that just in time for grilling season we have gorgeous men's aprons available. We will be showing them off at the One of a Kind Spring Show and Sale in Toronto from March 28th until April 1st. We now also have our men's collection available online so you can fire up the grill and make an order whenever the mood strikes your fancy.

Saturday, 17 March 2012

Happy St.Patrick's Day!

Hope you are wearing something green and enjoying the spring-like weather. It has been kind of misty all day which makes it feel more like we are on the Emerald Isle. Good to know our Toronto weather is getting in the spirit of things as well.

To get in the mood I will sip a wheat grass smoothie. It's green! It's healthy! No hangover! Perhaps to round things out I will also make this Ale-braised Cabbage with Leeks from Vegetarian Times magazine. I think I will feel a lot better the morning after if I ingest my ale with some cabbage rather than downing pint after pint.

However you are spending this St.Paddy's Day, hope it's a good one!

(photo: Vegetarian Times)

Friday, 16 March 2012

Hurray for Documentaries!

There are few things that would make me opt to sit indoors in the dark on such a beautiful spring day but a documentary is one of them. I am heading to the new Bloor Hot Docs Cinema to seeBeing Elmo:A puppeteer's Journey. It was playing at Hot Docs last year and I didn't get a chance to see it so I am happy it is back. I am going with a girlfriend who is as much of a cryer as I am, so I have a feeling we are both going to get misty eyed during this one. I am bringing lots of kleenex!

I am so happy Toronto has it's very own documentary cinema!

Wednesday, 14 March 2012

Happy National Chip Day!

Who knew, right? I guess there is a day for everything and why not pay a salty homage to the potato chip? I try to limit my fatty intake and chips aren't my go-to snack but I know a lot of friends who have a weakness for those crispy little morsels. I am thinking of one friend in particular who mocks me whenever I feed her a vegan dessert or offer her a sprinkling of carob chips on some frozen yogurt. Yesterday we met at a friend's house for dinner and I brought vegan chocolate cupcakes made with mung beans. After a little bit of ribbing my friend ate a cupcake and had to admit that it was tasty. Yesterday a vegan cupcake, today a salt induced stupour. It is all about balance.

Friday, 9 March 2012

Ivy Bike Lock

The spring-like weather we have been enjoying this week has been heavenly, and to top it off the clocks go forward this weekend as well. Whee!! I have been riding my bike a lot this week and it has been delightful. It would be even more delightful if I had this ivy bike lock by Sono Mocci. It is perfect, like a little piece of nature wrapped around your bike as you ride through the urban jungle. I am in love.

(Saw it here )

Thursday, 8 March 2012

Chocolate Bar Coffee Cake

Anyone who knows me knows that I have never met a coffee cake I didn't like. Partly it is because I associate coffee cake with old school visiting - the idea that someone would drop by in the middle of the afternoon for a cup of coffee and a gab session. I love the idea of sitting around with a girlfriend, a cup of something warm and a piece of crumbly cake in front of us. It conjures up images of effortless lazy days, something that is hard to do in our overly scheduled, multi-tasking lifestyles.

With that in mind I decided to bake a coffee cake and and invite a friend over. I used a recipe from my beloved Bite Me cookbook by Julie Albert and Lisa Gnat. It is one of those magical cookbooks where everything turns out - no adjustments necessary. Everything is yummy on the first try.

Chocolate Bar Coffee Cake (How can you go wrong with a name like that?!)
from Bite Me, by Julie Albert and Lisa Gnat
  • In a food processor combine 1 cup sugar, 6 tbsp margarine, 2 eggs and 1 tsp vanilla. Process for 2 minutes.
  • Mix 1 cup sour cream with 1 tsp baking soda and let it sit for 30 seconds (the sour cream gets all bubbly, very neat!) Then add it to the food processor and mix 3 seconds.
  • Add 1 1/3 cup flour and 11/2 tsp baking powder to the mix and pulse until the flour disappears.
  • Pour half the batter into a 9 inch square baking pan coated with cooking spray. Cover with half of a topping made with 2 cups chopped chocolate (I used a mix of milk and semi sweet chocolate) 1 cup brown sugar, 2 tbsp cocoa and 1 tbsp cinnamon. (I also added some coconut just because I had a handful to use up)
  • Top with remaining batter and then remaining topping.
  • Bake for 45 minutes in a 350 degree oven.
Pat yourself on the back for being a Baking Beauty and wait for a friend to come for a visit.