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Burger King offering flame-grilled perfume… or are they?

- March 20th, 2015
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Burger King Japan is offering a flame-grilled fragrance for a limited time, but is this the real deal or one Whopper of an April Fool’s Day prank? (Photo courtesy of Burger King Japan)

Burger King Japan has announced it will be offering a limited edition burger-scented perfume. But is this marketing genius or one Whopper of an April Fool’s Day prank?

The company announced that the flame-grilled eau de Whopper will be offered in stores beginning April 1. However, this burger-scented treat won’t be around long – the offer will only last one day.

According to a press release, customers will be able to purchase the perfume and a Whopper burger as a set for 5000 yen, or approximately $52.45.

If this does turn out to be the real deal and not a hoax, it wouldn’t be the first time the company has offered customers the chance to douse themselves with a meat-scented fragrance.

In 2008, Burger King in the U.S. introduced a body spray dubbed “Flame,” which was advertised as “the scent of seduction, with a hint of flame-broiled meat.”

Winterlicious: The Shore Club’s hearty food for a cold winter night

- February 5th, 2015

It’s cold, it’s snowy, and it’s dark before 5 p.m.

What better way to warm things up in the dead of winter than by stuffing your face with carbs, meat, sugar and cream?

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From top left, clockwise: Arugula beet salad, Lyonnaise Potato, Key Lime Pie and New York Striploin.(Marianne Dowling, QMI Agency)

With so many Canadian cities offering up prix fixe restaurant promotions this time of year, it’s a little easier to get out from under the fleece blankets, brave the nasty weather and chow down.

Deep Dish was invited to dine in at The Shore Club this week as part of Toronto’s 14-day foodie dream Winterlicious (Jan 30- Feb. 12), where participating restaurants offer menus of three-course meals at fixed prices.

The Shore Club’s laid-back downtown location (a second one is in Ottawa) features a cocktail bar and dining area.  Patrons are offered a large seafood and beef selection on the menu. Old standbys like steak, lobster, salmon and prawns get punched up a notch with macadamia nut crusts, vanilla batters and cilantro-citrus marinades.

The restaurant’s Winterlicious menu paid homage to its regular fare – a mix of familiar comfort food (steak, potatoes, fries, sticky toffee pudding) with upscale twists.

For my appetizer I chose the arugula beet salad. It was a nice combination of bitter greens and sweet beets topped with a creamy goat cheese and an acidic balsamic reduction to pull it all together.

My main course included a hearty New York Striploin (medium-rare) with blue cheese emulsion garnished with chopped tomatoes and basil. The Lyonnaise potato, which is sliced potatoes with herbs and caramelized onions, came with the steak.

And for dessert, I went with the tart key lime pie with graham cracker crust and whipped cream.

Fellow Deep Disher Ling Hui had the sticky toffee pudding with buttery warm caramel sauce and a dollop of ice cream that she described as “filling,” “dense” and an appropriate dessert for a cold winter day.

I made a batch of The Shore Club’s sticky toffee pudding myself last weekend and even though it messed up my kitchen a lot in preparation (I had batter everywhere because I only had a hand-mixer) it was really easy to make and tasted delicious.  This recipe makes a lot of cake and sauce, so either wait for when you have company over – or cut the original recipe in half.

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Sticky Toffee Pudding (Marianne Dowling, QMI Agency)

Sticky Toffee Pudding(Serves 24)

450 gr. Dry Dates

3.5 cups of Water

2 tsp. Baking Soda

1 lb. Soft Butter

680 gr. Brown Sugar

8 Eggs

680 gr. All Purpose Flour

2.5 tsp. Baking Powder

SAUCE

1 lb. Butter

700 gr. Brown Sugar

1 lt. 35% Cream

Product Description/Method

Cream butter and brown sugar, in a mixer with the paddle attachment add the eggs one at a time.  In a sauce pan, mix date and water and bring to a boil, remove from heat and add baking soda. Set aside.  Add the date mixture to the butter mixture, and blend for 3-4 minutes. Mix the flour and baking powder together and mix with date batter.

Preheat oven to 350 deg. F., and bake for approx. 30-35 minutes.

SAUCE

Melt butter and sugar, pour the cream and bring to a boil, serve hot.

Top it with ice cream. You won’t regret it.

I tried a juice cleanse and it was actually good

- January 27th, 2015

I tried a juice cleanse and I liked it.

Yes, juicing is controversial; its health benefits aren’t backed by scientific evidence to suggest it even works. Still, I thought that trying it for a few days couldn’t be that bad..could it? This is exactly what I wanted to discover for myself. (January is the month to start and usually end resolutions, after all!)

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Read more…

Tips for brewing the perfect cup from a Starbucks coffee master

- December 10th, 2014
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Get ready for holiday entertaining with these tips for brewing the perfect cup of coffee from a Starbucks coffee master. (Fotolia Photo)

The holidays are almost upon us, and with them come entertaining family and friends.

While many hosts and hostesses often spend a lot of time thinking about the dinner and what kind of wine they will serve, they typically don’t put the same kind of thought into what type of coffee they will serve, says Starbucks coffee master Kathleen Cook.

So how does one create the perfect cup of coffee to satisfy their festive guests?

During a coffee tasting in downtown Toronto recently, Cook offered these tips for brewing the perfect cup.

  • To start, use two level tablespoons of ground coffee for every six ounces of water.
  • Use filtered water if possible. If not, use nice, fresh, cold running water.
  • For the freshest coffee, keep it whole bean and grind it just before you brew it. The brewing method you choose determines what kind of grind the coffee should be – coarse, fine or somewhere in between. If you are unsure, Cook suggests asking a barista.
  • If you do choose to grind it in advance, store the grinds in an air-tight, opaque container at room temperature. (Storing it in the fridge or freezer causes the coffee to pick up the smell of other things, which will affect the taste.)
  • If after brewing your coffee to the specified amount, you find it too weak, Cook suggests not adding more coffee, but instead changing the way you brew. For instance, if you are using a standard coffee machine, perhaps try a French press.
  • Similarly, if you find the coffee too strong, try a milder coffee.

So what kind of coffee might a Starbucks coffee master suggest serving during the holidays?

“I’d probably still go with the Christmas Blend,” she says. “There’s a nice, bright, clean flavour to the coffee.”

Starbucks Christmas Blend is currently celebrating its 30th anniversary and is now available in blonde, espresso and decaffeinated varieties as well.

“Christmas Blend is just one of those iconic blends of coffee,” says Cook. “I think it just brings back that holiday feeling for customers.

“It goes so well with what people are typically eating at the holiday season, whether that’s savoury items or sweet items, whatever they might be enjoying – it’s just that perfect pairing.”

Second Cup unveils new logo and menu

- December 4th, 2014
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(Second Cup photo)

Second Cup is stepping up its game by taking coffee brewing to the next level in its latest marketing move.

The Canadian coffee giant unveiled an overhaul of its menu and logo at its redesigned “Café of the Future”  in downtown Toronto (King Street West and John Street location) on Thursday.

The pièce de résistance in the rebranding? A “slow bar” featuring a $15,000 Alpha Dominche Steampunk machine that brews individual cups of coffee that are richer and more robust than your regular cup of joe, and a pour over brewing method that any quality-minded minimalist would love.  Read more…