travel


As I’ve mentioned before, I recently moved to Toronto. It’s been hard finding my footing here, but the food in my neighbourhood is great. Not only do I live next to Koreatown, but I live a stone’s throw away from the best snack ever.

Walnut cakes, if you’ve never seen them are made with a crazy contraption that looks like injection molding for baked goods.

walnut cake machine in action

There’s a person who sits at the machine, s/he puts a walnut into the bottom of the pan, the machine moves the mold forward, injects batter into both sides of the mold, then injects red bean paste and presses them together. The whole thing heats/bakes for like 30-60 seconds. The top lifts off, and the machine pushes out the “walnuts” when it’s done. It’s quite a sight to see.

The walnut cake is like the Korean equivalent to the Timbit or Munchkin/Doughnut Hole I think it’s way tastier though.

The best thing about these walnut cakes is that they’re in the shape of a walnut!
walnut cakes

These beautiful things will run you $1.50 for 6. Way better than any stale Timbit.

hodo kwaja

I spent a nice 22 hours in Boston last month. We went to see Leonard Cohen, and ended up having two beautiful meals.

We ate dinner at erbaluce. Had a glass of Erbaluce which was really quite good. Clean and crisp. Started with the oysters which were just ok. My dining companion is of the philosophy that you don’t mucky-muck oysters with anything except for a squeeze of lemon. They had served the oysters with horseradish on top. I’m not as picky, but I thought they were just ok. I forgot to ask where they were from.

DC had the soft shell crab which was to die for. I had the fish special, which I cannot remember what it was called. The fish was delicious in the moment and quite forgettable I guess.

The best thing though was dessert. We had turkish coffee that was steeped with cardamom. I had the poached pear in saffron sauce and caramel drizzle.

poached pear in saffron sauce

DC had the orange-chocolate tart. The crust was heavenly.

orange-chocolate tart from erbaluce

The service was outstanding at erbaluce, I would definitely go again next time I’m in Boston.

The other meal we had was breakfast at Mike and Patty’s They specialize in sandwiches and breakfast and are located in a tiny corner of a town-house type structure. The place was packed on Sunday morning, and the service was with a smile. DC had the breakfast torta which looked to die for. I had the Banh Mi Hot Dog, one of the specials of the day. It was a bit of a gamble, but it totally paid off. The Banh Mi Hot Dog had homemade liver pate, a hot dog, pickled veg, butter and some hot peppers. It was really good.

We also got a homemade chocolate doughnut that we split on the bus ride home that was beautifully cakey and very well executed. I’m more of a yeast doughnut woman, but this was pretty satisfying.

My Fort Myers trip wasn’t all about oysters, but we did some cooking too. I’m not use to all the strip malls, but our trip to Publix was amazing. The staff there were super awesome to us.

Anyway, by the end of our trip, we had a fridge full of odds and ends. I made up a quick quinoa salad with green peppers, red peppers, red onion, pear, cilantro and tomato. I learned about quinoa in university, and loved it ever since. It’s a nice alternative grain to throw into the mix when you’re tired of making rice.

quinoa salad in fort myers

Just got back from 5 days in the Fort Myers area… Lovely tan, ate very well, avoided the swineflu.

oysters from Snook Inn

HUGE oysters we ate on our first night there. Not the most flavourful oysters I’ve ever had, but definitely the biggest. If you’re ever in Marco Island, check out the Snook Inn. Delicious grouper sandwich and cold beers.