Tag Archives: cooking for others

The language of food

One of the things I love about cooking so much, apart from the fact that it involves making delicious food, is that it’s like its own form of communication.

A lot can be said by the simple act of cooking for others. When a parent makes their child his or her favourite food, it’s their way of saying “I love you and want to make you happy”. When someone’s loved one passes away and people bring them casseroles, it says “I’m so sorry for your loss and I’m here to help in any way I can”. When we make someone a birthday cake it says “Hey you’re pretty awesome and deserve to be celebrated today.”

The language of food is one we can all speak and understand.

And as someone who’s not always as good with words, I tend to do a lot of talking through food.

Friday night I made lemon rosemary roast chicken with carrots and baby potatoes for JZ, which said “I love you enough to dissect out the chicken organs by myself and get smushed kidneys all over my bare hands”.

Lemon rosemary roast chicken

For all you Canadians, the recipe was from the Spring 2014 issue of Food and Drink, and I highly recommend it! The brine makes the chicken so tender and moist. It may take an extra day to prepare, but it’s so worth it.

Lemon rosemary roast chicken

Saturday morning I made us these whole wheat buttermilk pancakes for breakfast, which said “Haha sucker, I totally snuck whole wheat flour into these without you even noticing”. They were really good – especially with chocolate chips added to them!

Whole wheat buttermilk pancakes

Just a note: I only use whole wheat pastry flour in my baking – regular whole wheat flour tends to make things too dense and tough.

Later on in the day my good friend came over to catch up over lunch, so I made us African peanut soup (subbing sunflower seed butter for the peanut butter) from Oh She Glows’ cookbook with salted smashed avocado on buckwheat toast. This said “I really value our friendship and love having life chats with you.”

Oh She Glows African peanut soup

And that night JZ and I went over to his parents’ house for dinner. So I made a batch of chocolate chip cookies (recipe from here) to say “Thanks for having me over for dinner”.

Chocolate chip cookies

The dinner they made was seriously delicious! And I’m no mind reader but I think it’s message was “Be careful, our food is as good as it looks and might send you into a 12 hour food coma.” I didn’t listen – oops.

How do you communicate through food?

33 Comments

Filed under food and cooking

Weekend recap: all about cooking

You know what I’ve realized? My weekends totally revolve around cooking. Some people might find that boring, but I kind of love it. Since I don’t get the chance to cook much/at all during the week, it’s nice to spend some solid time in the kitchen on the weekends doing what I love.

With the exception of Friday nights… I’m usually so exhausted by Friday at 5 pm that the idea of cooking makes me wince. So when I got home and my dad said “Hey Chels, want to order Ichiban?” I could not have been more in agreement!

Ichiban sushi

Surprisingly it gave me just enough energy to whip up a batch of soup for dinners next week. Yeah, I spent my Friday night cooking. Hashtag lame-o.

And then I spent Saturday wanting to hurl my DSLR camera across the room as I attempted to learn how to use it when taking photos of the soup. What do all the buttons do, what does AE-L mean, and why the heck did all my pictures turn out so disgustingly bright?!

8March8

Clearly I’m not becoming a professional photographer anytime soon. Professional recipe tester though? I could get on board with that. I spent the afternoon making yet another recipe from Oh She Glows’ cookbook. Everything I’ve made so far has been delicious, and these Glo Bars are no exception. I have a feeling this batch won’t last long…

Glo Bars from Oh She Glows

Later on I continued my cooking spree by making dinner for JZ and I. I decided to try making a cheesy sausage baked pasta, which was a good idea in theory, but it turned out on the drier side. It was still really good, but it was a hundred times better when I heated up the leftovers with extra tomato sauce the next night.

Skillet cheesy baked sausage pasta

I made up for the dry pasta with dessert though! Earlier in the week I made super rich chocolate ice cream using this recipe. It was amazing on its own, but the addition of homemade crumbled brownie and almond butter totally took it over the top.

Chocolate ice cream with brownie and almond butter

Breakfast the next morning was another big production. I had been promising JZ homemade breakfast sandwiches for weeks, so I finally made good on my promise. I used this recipe to make the biscuits and then put out some fried eggs, bacon, and cheddar cheese so we could make our own sandwiches. Then my parents invited themselves to join us and stole half our food! But mom did the dishes for us, so I guess I can’t complain.

Biscuits, eggs, bacon, fruit salad

That meal marked the end of my cooking duties for the weekend, so I hung up my figurative apron (I need do dig out my real apron from the boxes of all my university stuff in the basement!) and then I went to the gym to do a solo spin workout while reading Fine Cooking. Even when I’m not cooking… I’m apparently still thinking about it!

Fine Cooking on spin bike

Do you cook more on the weekends or on weekdays?

How the heck do you use a DSLR camera?!

38 Comments

Filed under food and cooking, life

Weekend kitchen stories

In the early days of this blog, I wrote a lot more posts about my day-to-day life and food. I started moving away from that in recent years though because I felt like it was getting monotonous. I much prefer writing about recipes, restaurants, and nutrition topics these days – and I hope you guys like it too!

That being said, every so often I feel like posting about my life. So, let’s chat about my weekend shall we?

Friday night I made dinner for me and the boy. I had this pulled pork recipe cooking in the crockpot all day, which was perfect because who really feels like making dinner on Friday night at the end of a long week? Not me! To go with the pork I made easy baked French fries and two kinds of coleslaw. One was a classic coleslaw made with mayo, vinegar, and sugar and the other was this gourmet coleslaw recipe from The Food Network. Both were really good!

Pulled pork with fries and coleslaw

Afterwards I passed out on the couch at an embarrassingly early hour while we were watching the Olympic opening ceremonies… I was wiped from the week!

Greek yogurt and homemade granola

Saturday morning I made us Greek yogurt breakfast bowls with homemade granola based on this recipe. We followed it up with a trip to Tamp Coffee Co and a stroll around downtown that we cut short because it was freeeeeeezing out!

Tamp Coffee Co

Later on in the day my friends Andrea and Shannon came to visit. The three of us cooked an amazing dinner together, just like we used to do in our days at Brescia. We cooked up this cauli-power fettucine alfredo and paired it with this shredded kale salad. Both were delicious!

The best shredded kale salad

Vegan cauliflower fettucine alfredo

We rounded out our dinner with some girl talk, internship stories, and kombucha. It was just what I needed. This year of internship can be stressful and exhausting, but hanging out with these girls always makes my spirits feel so much lighter!

Cathy's Kombucha

Sunday was my “get stuff done” day and involved a trip to the gym, a cookie recipe photo shoot, grocery shopping, and cooking up a batch of this soup.

Curried lentil quinoa soup

It all went by way too fast of course. But luckily I have lots of fun stuff happening next weekend to look forward to, so hopefully that will get me through this week!

What’s your favourite kind of coleslaw?

Do you ever cook dinner with your friends? What do you like to make?

36 Comments

Filed under food and cooking, life