Clean Eating with Pan Seared Lemon Rosemary Salmon

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Aaaand I’m back with the recipes! Currently I’ve been pretty much overusing the method of pan searing, then placing the dish in the oven (steak, pork chop, salmon etc). I really LOVE the colour you get when you sear! I also find that when you pop it in the oven to cook, the texture of your meat can be controlled better than frying it completely, which can result in tougher meat.

I’ve been working on my summer bod, which really means sleeping in the gym and working out 24/7. Truth is, weight loss is mostly about what you eat, and as hard as it’s been – I’ve been doing pretty well! Best way to stick to a diet is to make sure you still eat delicious meals… and this lemon rosemary salmon is one of my faves!! Super easy to make and healthy too!! I served this with roasted sweet potato, sauteed brussel sprouts with bacon and pine nuts and roasted zucchini. MMMMM!

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Antler: A Late Night Menu Worth Staying Up For

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Walk into Antler at 10pm on a Friday, and you’ll be able to try a late night menu featuring dishes like Venison Heart Poppers, Wild Boar Corndog and Duck Heart Yakitori. I got a sneak preview of this exciting menu at a media event and I have to admit I have never pushed myself to be this adventurous!!

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Real talk though, it was both a fun and delicious experience! One of the highlights were the Duck Liver Paté served with crostini and wild blueberry compote. WOW, I was pleasantly surprised by the light and slightly salty taste of the paté, complemented by a touch of sweetness!

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I also really enjoyed the Wild Boar Corndog – the house made sausage was ridiculously tasty and perfectly deep fried… YUM!

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The late night menu is also Japanese inspired – you’ll see gyoza, takoyaki and yakitori on the menu. Not to mention a REALLY kick ass cocktail called Tsubomi Squeeze, featuring lemongrass infused sake, grapefruit liqueur, Aperol and lemon rhubarb bitters. I can drink it in gallons really, the flavours so delicate but not too sweet… It really made me nostalgic of my super dope Japan trip earlier this year.

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Antler prides itself on serving locally sourced food, and you’ll see wild boar, deer and bison all over the menu. One thing that stands out to me… Bison Rib Eye!! What?! I’ll definitely be back to try that!!

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Antler
1454 Dundas St W,
Toronto, ON M6J 1Y6

Legit Korean Dining Experience

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In two and a half hours I pretty much ate through nine delicious Korean dishes at Chopsticks + Fork’s Korean Food 101 dining experience at Song Kook’s. Highlights of the night were a few of my faves: really legit Japchae and equally delish Bulgogi. I love the sesame and lightly sweet soy flavours of both Japchae and Bugogi… Song Kook’s did not disappoint! Gotta admit, it was my first “dining experience” ever, and it was pretty fun! To be served a variety of of dope food (I love feasts) with a host talking about the backstory of every dish, can’t complain!!

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Connecting people through food and learning more about its rich cultural backstory is the concept behind Jusep Kim’s Chopsticks + Forks, which currently offers a Korean Food 101 dining experience and Kensington Market food tour. I definitely recommend this experience to those that want to learn more about Korean food, or even introduce it to friends. The food is BOMB and Jusep is an awesome and super passionate host. His enthusiasm is contagious – you can’t help but be drawn to the stories about the food that he grew up eating and listen to the cultural backstory behind every dish. 

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Yep, they also served a Korean classic, kimchi – which Song Cook’s served in generous portions (you had to cut with scissors!!).  Gotta love the unlimited banchan too!!!

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There’s no better place like Toronto to discover different food, and Jusep’s Chopsticks + Forks 101 is the best place to start.

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Mmm! The above was a deep fried sweet and sour pork (Tang Su Yuk). BONUS: use the coupon code FRIENDS2017 to get 30% off a food experience.

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The best thing about sweet cream and cookies + recipe!

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I’ve always loved cookies and cream, one of my fav go to ice cream flavours apart from chocolate chip cookie dough. Used to love the version by Baskin Robbins but…. it just wasn’t the best – until I tried Ample Hills Creamery!!

This recipe is a game changer. No lie. I’m eating it out of the tub right now, and it’s legit crack. I first tasted Sweet Cream and Cookies last summer in NYC, at Ample Hills Creamery. Still remembering that hot day in Brooklyn, and how I declared it the best cookies and cream that ever touched my lips!! Now what makes this ice cream are the huge chunks of Back to Nature cookies, a less sweet version of Oreos that’s sort of an eyeopener (I never knew you existed!!).

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Recreating the ice cream at home was very easy – took the recipe straight from their cookbook! It calls for Walt’s Dream base, a creamy luscious vanilla ice cream base made from fresh milk and cream, skim milk powder and organic cane sugar. The recipe itself stresses that they recommend the organic stuff; but I was only able to find organic sugar from Bulk Barn. SO DELISH!!

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The Only Chocolate Chip Recipe You Need!!!

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WOW okay I gotta I admit that I’ve never made such legit and fancy cookies before.

Look at them!!! They’re straight out of what you would buy at a bakery, or even high-end specialty shop because I used 70% bittersweet Valrhona Guanaja chocolate. YUP, ultra fancy stuff. Valrhona chocolate (from France) is considered one of the finest chocolate in the world, and is also pretty pricy at $4.99 per 100g, not to mention hard to find here in Toronto. I once saw a bar of Valrhona baking chocolate at Pusateri’s for $20!! CRAZY!

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Bought these chocolate disks from St. Lawrence Market, and they really make all the difference! When you eat the cookies warm, it’s almost like drinking hot chocolate in a cookie!!

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This cookie though…

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Everything about it was right, crunchy, buttery goodness at first bite… Gooey and warm on the inside, with the bittersweet chocolate a perfect touch to balance out the sweet cookie. I topped them off with fleur de sel, an awesome complement because the hint of saltiness really cuts the sweetness of the cookie. BEST COOKIE EVER!

I may have eaten 8 or more (lost count a long time ago)…

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