Here’s to my first food related but not directly food related post. Pinterest has gotten me again, and this time for home DIY projects. When my husband and I did a full overhaul on our kitchen years ago, we had the luxury of planning everything. How much and what type of storage, gas range, cabinets, backsplash, the whole works. We also picked this gorgeous stainless steel Jenn-Air French door fridge which I absolutely love, except it had one tiny downside. The doors would not hold a magnet.
Finally, a Pintrest idea that works! I love Pintrest, as a lot of people do, and I have so many DIY and food pins that it’s time to make sub-boards. After seeing many pins about baked avocado and egg, I finally had a chance to try it over the long weekend. As my patience ran short that morning, I did not wait for Pintrest to load up the recipe. This was the perfect time to just wing-it!
A couple notes before you dive into the recipe:
- make sure you haul out enough avocado to fit the size of egg you’re cracking in, or else you will have a pool of egg whites on your counter.
- cup your hands while wrapping the bacon around the avocado. Between the slippery avocado and egg white dripping off the sides, your breakfast may end up on the floor.
- serve in soup bowls or another dish with sides. If you like your egg yolks soft, there will quite the mess.
Here is the recipe for 2 people:
4 Bacon, strips
Parmesan cheese, for grating
Cracked pepper, for seasoning
1) Preheat oven to 400°F.
2) Half avocados and remove pit.
3) Hollow out portions of the avocado center, just enough to fit the cracked egg. Be careful not to break the walls of the avocado. Using a large spoon, remove entire avocado and skin.
4) Carefully crack egg and drop into the well of the avocado.
5) Drape bacon horizontally across avocado and egg, carefully wrap around and place in baking dish. Repeat with remaining avocados.
6) Grate cheese over top. Season with black pepper if desired.
7) Bake for 20 minutes for a soft yolk, or 25 minutes for medium.
8) Carefully remove with spoon and serve warm.
It all started with my sister-in-law. After watching the movie Fat, Sick, and Nearly Dead, she decided to put her family through a 10 day detox, only consuming juice. While over at her house one day, I saw a pretty, shiny, chrome juicer sitting on her counter and the rest was history. I opted for the same brand and juicing style as hers, Omega, which masticates instead of centrifuges. From the research that was done, it seems that the masticating machines, which uses an auger to squeeze and force the separation from fruit/vegetable and juice was far superior. Not only does it use less heat and friction to extract, therefore preserving more enzymes, it also produces a higher juice yield. This fancy juicer did not come cheap, as I forked over $397. Good thing shipping was free!
As I waited for my juicer to arrive, I went on a sales pitch trying to convince my friends to buy one too. One of the debates was whether juicing was better for you compared to blending. My friend who already had a Nutribullet (who I usually am successful at convincing her to buy pretty much anything I buy) was happy with hers. She felt that the Vitamix did such a good job at blending her morning drinks, and there was no need for a juicer. Another concern that came up was the loss of fibre. While juicing extracts all the nutrients and vitamins, the fibres, which our bodies still need, are separated and discarded. While I agree this is a valid reason, for someone like me who does not like to eat fruits or vegetables, a juicer is the only way I will get all that nutritional goodness. There is no way I would normally go through a Costco sized bag of oranges in less than a week!
It’s only been one week since the juicer has arrived, and only a handful of recipes have been tried, but I’m still very happy with the Omega. Although some of the pulp finds its way though the sieve (for oranges and ripe pears), the majority of the juice that comes out is just juice, and the pulp that is separated feels dry to the touch. The parts come off with ease and can be quickly cleaned. The machine also came with other attachments to make nut butters, baby food, and various shapes of noodles, which will be explored another time.
- 1/4 pineapple
- 2 apples
- 1 pear
- 1 orange
- 3 carrots
- 1/2″ ginger root
- 1 apple
- 1 spear brocoli
- 2 carrots
- 1 apple
Well, 2013 is over and so is my year of documenting 365 days of food. Looking back at all the pictures, I must say it was a very interesting year. A few vacations, good food, and a great experience. Some interesting dates and memorable events include:
- January 1: The hams of all hams arrives on December 31st 2012. Just thinking about makes my mouth water all over again, and kept us entertained for almost 2 months.
- January 3: Fractured my right wrist whilst skating. This made cooking incredibly challenging for the next 6 weeks. On the plus side, I am now fully ambidextrous.
- February 23: My very first Arab wedding. The food was interesting and tasty, while the ceremony was even more fascinating and entertaining. I felt like I was part of a live version of Aladdin.
- March 15-19: The hubby got a new job, and we celebrated with an impromptu trip to San Francisco. It was the perfect getaway to eat and shop. The high note included the Saturday market at the ferry building, while the sad part was Sebo didn’t have Hokkaido uni the night we went, which was the main reason for eating there.
- March 25: First day we started the Beachbody Insanity workout. This was such a huge accomplishment as we never missed a single day, and the entire 9 week program was finished on May 26th. I was in the best shape of my life!
- May 6: As the result of a minor skin infection, I panicked and finally admitted my eating habits were terrible (those who know me well, know I’m anti-vegetables), and vowed to start eating healthier. That was the first day I incorporated the Glowing Green Smoothie, from Kimberly Snyder’s The Beauty Detox Foods book, into my life 5 times a week. I also made an attempt to cut coffee out. It lasted for 2 months, then I caved.
- Mother’s Day: A bake sale at work fueled my spontaneous competitiveness to bid $130 for a cake. All proceeds went to the Children’s Miracle Network, and it was an incredibly unique eggless condensed milk cake made by one of our awesome pastry chefs.
- June 1: I was honored with an invite to the grand opening of Menchie’s Garneau. I felt like a kid in a candy store! Being able to sample all the yogurt flavors and build my own yogurt creation without any restrictions was definitely a moment to remember.
- October 13-30: It was a long time in the planning, but for the first time since I was a child, we had a family vacation. The destination was Hong Kong with a side trip to Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia. I had an amazing time. The food was great, the weather was great, and of course some quality family time is always appreciated.
- November 28 – December 1: Black Friday shopping! This time around, Charlyn and I thought we’d tackle Seattle. The focus of course was shopping with a meal thrown in here and there. We hit the outlets just past midnight, and shopped a total of 26 hours within a span of 2 days. Quite the accomplishment I must say!
- December 15-29: A family emergency sent the husband and I back to Hong Kong on very short notice. Christmas in Hong Kong was not the same, but on the bright side, I was able to eat the things I missed first time around.
- December 31: Belated Christmas dinner finally arrives. My dad makes the best turkey and sticky rice stuffing! No holiday is complete without this tradition.
In total I posted up 1008 pictures on Instagram. Not too far off from my initial guess considering I didn’t post my routine yogurt breakfast meal during workdays. I noticed I eat a heck of a lot of Chinese and Japanese food, and my top favorite foods appear to be pasta, burgers, bagels and fried chicken. Home cooked meals dominated the category of dining locations at approximately 300 meals, which I am very happy with, the staff cafeteria at work placed second at 180 for obvious reasons, but disappointingly McDonalds was third at 20 times (I blame the Despicable Me Happy Meal toys). Some special occasions to note include 2 weddings, the You’re Welcome Edmonton awards, Feastavil, Taste of Edmonton, Heritage Days, Taco Days, and several trips to Calgary.
Finally, I would like to thank everyone for their support throughout the entire year. Although a part of me is relieved that I can finally eat first without taking a photo of my meal, the other side of me is sad to see it end. After awhile it becomes a part of your life. I may have scared a few people with my constant photo snapping, but for those who waited patiently wait while I re-arranged the table before eating, and to the followers of this blog, Twitter, and Instagram, it wouldn’t have been as fun without you. Thanks for making 2013 a great year to remember!
“I scream, you scream, we all scream for yogurt!” Yes, yes, I know it’s supposed to be “ice cream”, but that’s just how I excited I felt when I entered Menchie’s Garneau. The color scheme of the international franchise is an uplifting bright pink and green, the perfect atmosphere for families, children and young adults. The images of cartoon yogurt cones and cow characters seen around the store remind me of a Japanese video game. I guess it could have been the atmosphere, or that I was honored with an invite to the store’s grand opening.
Menchie’s has been opened in Edmonton for 6 weeks now, a first time appearance for this self-serve frozen yogurt chain. As with other self-serve froyo joints, you get to choose your flavor of yogurt, what toppings to put on and of course, how much of each your stomach desires. “Mix, weigh, and pay” is their motto. We were able to sample each and every one of the yogurt flavors available that day. There was a good mix of a variety of flavors, of sweet and tart, light and heavy.
My top flavors include:
1) Green apple tart: light, sweet, tart, good natural green apple flavors
2) Cherry tart: also light, sweet, and tart. Could use a bit more cherry flavor.
3) Peanut butter: creamy and delicious. It had the perfect intensity of peanut butter. Not too much where I felt like I was eating a spoonful of peanut butter, but enough that I could eat it on its own or add Reeses peanut butter cups to it.
4) Red velvet: it was more chocolatey than red velvet, but overall the texture was creamy and smooth. The chocolate was not overwhelming, and again it had a good enough flavor that additional toppings wouldn’t put you into a sugar coma.
Some other flavors included:
1) Irish mint: a good palette cleanser. Too minty for a whole serving. Maybe some oreo cookies or chocolate bits would break the mintyness up
2) Breakfast special: interesting concept. Remember when you were a kid (or last weekend), when you would eat a bowl of Fruit Loops, then drink the milk afterwards? Well turn that into a yogurt!
3) Birthday cake: we were informed that it was one of their most popular flavors, however I found there was a slight aftertaste.
4) Ripe red strawberry: not sweet enough for me, and I found it lacked in strawberry flavor. My yogurt partner Davina said it reminded her of Hi-chew candy.
The toppings were pretty standard. There was a good mix of chocolates, candy, fresh fruit and sauces. They had blueberry mochi available that day, which is a huge winner for me! And the popping bobba, which by the way, I had no idea that was the proper term for it.
The two owners and kind hosts for the Blogurt Fest grand opening held that Saturday morning were wonderful and informative. It was a nice way of welcoming some community bloggers, hold a creative yogurt contest, as well as entice the general public to free yogurt for a generous window of 4 hours. We learned about the founding of Menchie’s, which was originally opening by a Californian couple. The word ‘mench’ meant good and loyal friend., and the “ie” was the feminine conjugation which was the name given to Danna by her husband, the successful husband and wife team of this delicious yogurt shop. Such sweet beginnings to a very successful empire. Prior to the invite, I had never heard of Menchie’s (and I’m a huge yogurt lover!), so I was impressed to learn that there were already 300 stores internationally, and 49 of those were right here in Canada.
After a generous tasting of all the yogurt flavors, the contest began where each contestant were to put forth their unique yogurt creation. A panel of 3 judges scored each contestant on their presentation, taste, and the name of their yogurt creation. I named mine the “red and green goblin”, a twist of green apple and cherry tart yogurt, topped with kiwi and strawberry. It was not one of the winners that morning, but I got to eat free yogurt and it certainly hit the spot!
When the fun and games came to an end and we left the store, a line-up of eager freebie yogurt lovers snaked its way around the strip mall. If it’s one thing that will get Edmontonian’s out of bed on a Saturday morning, it’s free yogurt!
Thanks for a lovely time Menchie’s Garneau, I’m sure you don’t need the good luck, but I still wish you all the success!Menchie’s Garneau
8705 109 Street
Edmonton, AB 780-760-1380