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I don't think anyone comes home from a hard day at work and thinks to themselves, "damn, I could really go for a stiff drink and a plateful of green vegetables". I mean really. But we all know they are pretty much the best things for us and help us fight cancer and clean our blood and a million other amazing things. So I keep on with my quest to find interesting and considered ways to cook greens so that I might start craving them along with Mars bars and taquitos.

I found this chard at my local capers and it was so pretty I knew I could find something to do with it:




Try some barely cooked in this unique saute from Bon Appetit:

Swiss Chard Saute

1 bunch red or rainbow swiss chard
2 thinly sliced shallots
2 garlic cloves, crushed in a press
crushed red pepper flakes to taste (don't be a pussy though, put lots in)
2 tbsp apple cider vinegar
2 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
2 tbsp butter
sea salt and fresh ground black pepper to taste

Chop your chard down into 1 inch pieces and put in a bowl, including stems. It looks huge, but it will reduce down as soon as you add it to the heat. Heat oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Add shallots and garlic. Cook, stirring often, until soft, about 5 minutes. Add red pepper flakes, stir 1 minute. Add the stems first, cook for 2 mins, then add the leaves. Add leaves and cook until crisp tender, about 5 minutes, then add butter and vinegar, toss until butter is melted. Season with salt and pepper and serve.




Something I didn't expect was that as soon as you add vinegar to chard, it smells exactly like a wet dog. I was standing there thinking seriously that a wet dog had just walked into my house and wondering what I was going to do with it and where it came from. But the smell doesn't last long (just until the vinegar has a chance to burn off slightly) and chard really is delicious cooked this way. I had mine with some pork, because I am slowly but steadily facing my fear of pork.




This would also be really good with a poached egg on top for breakfast, you know, to get your iron in before you go run a marathon and visit the farmers market, you asshole.

Just kidding (or am I?)

Jessica

http://crasscuisine.blogspot.com/

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The Golden Arches have always been somewhat of an obsession of mine (less the food and more the phenomenon). Since Matt just wrote a bit of local McDonald's history, I thought it'd be a good time to catch y'all up on a few McDonaldland characters that have morphed or been forgotten since their inception in the early 70s.

Read more >>

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Image credit - Me

Image Credit - Jesse Donaldson

When I think of Expo 86, I think of Expo Ernie, concrete motorcycles and cars, pavilion passports, a monorail and the geodesic dome with the Mc Barge docked next to it.  I assume some of these pieces went home, I know some of the buildings were moved to Richmond.  As for the Mc Barge, it has been floating in the Burrard Inlet in North Burnaby for some time.

The barge was named the Friendship 500 (Seaborne II is also marked on the vessel).  From what I gathered from the Internet, food was delivered to the front of the barge via a conveyor belt.  Reports of those who have boarded the vessel state the interior  of the barge is in decent condition.

There was talk about a year ago or so about trying to move it over to Mission however city permits became an issue.  Maybe someone can convince Princess Cruise lines to pull it along on their next cruise so the Mc Donalds lovers can get their fix.

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Campagnolo Roma has located the space where the Caribbean Hut Pizza Express was.   This is a great new addition to the area and based on the attendance on a few visits it has been very well supported by Vancouverites.  The interior is casual, and is accompanied by friendly service with reasonably priced food.

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You remember Nin. He's the guy who bought me that epic Indian blanket that remains so very relevant to my household. When he first started I promised him a cheesecake for his birthday, and never delivered because I'm an asshole. A year later Nin has decided to move on to greener pastures and has quit our mutual place of employment to be closer to home, as he lives in the 'burbs and he and his lovely wife are expecting a baby soon. I was not consulted in this decision. Pfft.

So to say a proper goodbye I thought it only appropriate to finally make him that damn cheesecake with the topping of his choice, and he chose raspberries:

Raspberry Cheesecake

Crust:

1 1/2 cups graham cracker crumbs
1 tbsp sugar
6 tbsp melted butter

Cake:

5 8 oz packages of cream cheese, room temperature
1 1/2 cups sugar
5 eggs, room temperature
2 egg yolks, room temperature
1/4 cup sour cream
1 tbsp grated lemon zest
1 1/2 tsp vanilla extract

Topping:

1 cup red jelly (not jam)
small container raspberries

Preheat oven to 350. In a medium bowl, combine the graham cracker crumbs, butter and sugar, mix until moistened. Pour into a 9" springform pan. Press crumbs into the bottom of the pan and 1 inch up the sides. Bake for 8 minutes and cool to room temperature.

Increase oven temp to 450. Place cream cheese and sugar in a bowl and blend until light and fluffy. This is the part where this cake got annoying. If you don't have one of those million-dollar Kitchenaid things that you can pour cement into and it will come out light and fluffy, then don't bother with this part of the recipe. Huge hunks of cream cheese pelted my walls at 30 mph and the sugar stayed in stubborn lumps on the side of the bowl. "Light and fluffy" my ass. Add the eggs first, 3 to start then 2 at a time for the rest, and they will provide enough liquid to help your shitty London Drugs mixer tackle the cream cheese. Period amen.

With mixer on low, add the zest and vanilla. When all is mixed thoroughly, pour on top of crust in the springform pan.

Bake the cake for 15 minutes. Reduce oven temperature to 225 and bake an additional 1 hour and 15 minutes. Turn off oven and open door wide. Cake will not be completely set in center. Leave cake in oven with door open for 30 minutes. Remove from oven and allow to sit at room temperature for another 2-3 hours until completely cooled.

To make the topping, melt the jelly in a small pan over low heat. Gently add raspberries and toss until coated. Remove from heat and let mixture cool slightly. Spoon over top of partially cooled cake and ALLOW BOTH TO COMPLETELY COOL. Cover cake with plastic wrap. Refrigerate overnight.

Remove cake from springform pan by running a knife along the outside edge and slowly unlocking springform. Retain the bottom of the pan for serving.




Let me tell you what an immense pain in the ass it is to do this cake without having the motherfucker crack right down the middle like the Grand fucking Canyon. The reason there are so many fussy temperature steps is to avoid this, as this mixture of egg and cream cheese positively lives to crack. I put mine in the fridge too early before it had completely cooled and so I got a cleft the size of my ass crack off to one side:




Ah well. Nin loved it and that's what counts. I carried this bitch to work with me and let me tell you it is really heavy. It's a good 8lbs of cheese, which is just wonderful if you think about it. We feasted on this alongside rich red wine and it was like Rome before the fall. Om nom nom.

This cake takes a lot of work so it's a good special occasion type thing, but just for a weeknight? You kinda have to hate yourself. Cheesecake is high maintenance. Join the club.

Jessica

http://crasscuisine.blogspot.com/

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Yoshoku-ya joins the likes of Jay Z, Father MC, Rakim and Alf.  I have been longing to go back to Yoshoku-ya for ages and to my excitement I heard they have reopened as 29th Ave Cafe on Boundary Road.  They apparently opened a while back but I could never get through on the phone so I was hesitant to make a trip out that way.

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 Zipang Sushi - Shrimp Sunomono ($4)
The best sunonomo in town.  There is no competition.


 Phnom Penh - Deep Fried Squid or Chicken ($13)
A must for any visit to Vancouver.

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It's been awhile since our last Croissant Slop posts, wherein we disobey all medical advice and seek to destroy what remains of our arteries with the most delicious croissants the GVRD has to offer. Forgive us for our time off: the extra pounds this little experiment has left us makes all the travel time between stops that much more arduous.

Thierry

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My last discussion with Joe we agreed that there aren't any destination restaurants (restaurants that you would fly in for) in Vancouver however many people come to Vancouver with the principal goal to just eat.  You could easily spend a week in this city and not have a bad meal or question to yourself that you might have wasted your hunger on a mediocre meal.   Food in Vancouver is outstanding and cheap.  Asian food can stand up to any other place in the world.

So rather than listing my favourite restaurants, I am creating a bucket list that would serve as my recommendations on dishes you need to try.  I know Vanmag has done it but, it is my turn suckers.

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I love stuffing things into other things and not just in my personal life, I also like to do it in the kitchen.

I've been trying to eat less bread which is tough for me because I'm a meat, potatoes, cheese and bread kind of gal. Veggies leave me flat, but I'm trying to adjust my attitude and my stomach.

So instead of making a starch-fest for lunch I decided to try a veggie fest with a little bit of starch, by stuffing tomatoes:

Stuffed Tomatoes with Rice and Feta

4 large beefsteak tomatoes
1 cup white or brown rice, prepared in a rice cooker or stove top
1/2 cup chopped flat-leaf parsley leaves
3/4 cup chopped feta
2 cloves chopped garlic
sea salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste
good glug olive oil

Rub a dutch oven or baking dish with olive oil and set aside. Using a tomato knife, chop off the tops and bottoms of the tomatoes so they lie flat in the dish. Hollow out tomatoes with a spoon. Sprinkle the insides of the tomatoes with sea salt and place hollowed-side down on a plate covered in paper towel to drain excess water from the tomatoes that will make the filling soggy. Let sit for 30 minutes.





Preheat the oven to 400 and combine all the ingredients together to make the rice filling. Arrange the tomatoes in the bottom of the dish and fill with rice filling, adding a drizzle of olive oil on the top of each tomato. Bake until the tomatoes turn soft and the filling begins to brown, about 45 minutes. Serve hot or room temperature.




I loved this! It was tasty and filling and the meaty tomatoes I chose were a good stomach filler. I ate two and put the other two aside for dinner. Okay I just lied I ate all four at once. At least I'm honest, eventually.

Jessica

http://crasscuisine.blogspot.com/