Unique Flavours – Lays From China

One of my favourite things to do is wander around T&T Supermarket looking at all the cool things not sold in my every day supermarket. They have the BEST produce and their noodle selection makes me drool. I always go in there without taking a cart and I always wind up at the check out, arms overflowing with stuff, ha ha. It’s a great store full of yummy things!

One of my other favourite things are Lay’s Potato Chips!

I’m basically married to Classic Lay’s but I do step out sometimes with other flavours, my favourite so far being the limon version I found in Arizona. Mmmmmm, Limon….

T&T carries a few Lay’s flavours and this time I tried:

Cucumber. Numb & Spicy Hot Pot Flavour. Wasabi!

All three bags were made in China and as you can see, feature some pretty interesting flavours. Cucumber. What?! I never would have thought!

I tried the Hot Pot version first and they were delicious! Think the best possible ramen noodle flavouring packet on chips. They were spicy too which always earns my respect because so often a product claims to be spicy but is only mild – I’m looking at you McDonald’s- These were a win.

Next up- Cucumber. When I bought them I wondered ” Are these really cucumber or are they pickles?” Nope. Really cucumber. Really strongly flavoured cucumber! And sweet. The coating on the outside was sweet. Like almost dessert sweet! I wasn’t expecting that. Our chips in Canada tend to be salty. And the funny thing about these chips…I got cucumber burps after. That was wild…I finished the whole bag – a very generous serving- but I wouldn’t buy them again. The sweetness threw me off. BUT they were not horrible. Just not to my taste.

Lastly, Wasabi. I LOOOOVE wasabi. Not only is it delicious, the real stuff is grown in an intriguing way:

So! The chips! They tasted like wasabi, the flavour profile was true and pronounced but the heat, that nose clearing quality just wasn’t there. AAAAND they had that same sweet coating as the cucumber chips did. I still ate the whole bag, ha ha ha but I wouldn’t buy these again. I’m definitely a salty gal 😉

T&T also carries BBQ Eel and Lime varieties. I’m keen on the Lime version. I know I run the risk of buying sweet chips again but a part of me is really curious about that with the lime…

Happy Munching!

Gingerbread Everything.

Breakfast time

Quinoa flakes? Check!

Pomegranate? Check!

Almonds? Check!

Delicious Gingerbread Truffle from Purdy’s? CHECK!!

I’m obsessed with all things Gingerbread this holiday season and life is damn tasty.

You need yourself some tasty too! Luckily I’ve done extensive research and have come up with three offerings you may like!

As I mentioned Purdy’s makes a Gingerbread Truffle:

Aren’t they darling!? Look at those wee gingerbreads…SQUEEE! The flavour is complex and they’ve got little crispy bits all throughout the soft and luscious truffle centre. They come in milk chocolate and dark -if you choose the dark, you’re also getting anti oxidants!) and are totally worth the $12.00 you’ll pay for them.

I also bought their eggnog truffles…meh. Actually…ick! I didn’t read the fine print when I ordered them because I thought- Oh eggnog, they’ll taste like that!- Yeah….more like rum and eggnog. I hate rum! Oh well, live and learn.

The Hubs ordered Sweet Georgia Browns and oh my GODDESS, those are a thing of joy and beauty. I made him take them to work with him because I didn’t trust myself not eat all his treats, ha!

The first gingerbread yum I ate this season was a treat most unusual:

Handmade by Sweet Chaos, this spiced kettle corn with icing drizzle can be found at Save On Foods. The frosting drizzle makes this! The popcorn is well made, soft and lightly spiced and then you get one with a bit of that drizzle and OH MY. The contrast between wet and dry is really fun to eat.

Next on our list is Ritter Sport Spiced Biscuit:

Mmmmm. It doesn’t say Gingerbread but this is Gingerbread. The chocolate coating is gingerbread spiced, the cookie is like a spiced Digestive biscuit and the mousse is gingerbready too. I can’t remember what I paid for this-I do remember it was higher than I normally would- but in the end, totally worth it. The flavour is a little bit fancier than the usual gingerbread we’re used to. It’d be worth checking out just for that.

What is your favourite flavour this season?

Knorr One Skillet Meals -Mediterranean Lemon Chicken w/ Barley – Review.

Knorr came out with something that caught my eye awhile ago. One skillets meals. They intrigued me because A. I’m a lazy ass and one skillet cooking is my jam. B. They use interesting grains like Barley and Quinoa.

My grocery store had them on sale so I picked up two offerings and finally got around to making one!

Behold! Mediterranean Lemon Chicken with Barley

These are meal starters so you’ve got to provide and add your own things. For this one those things are chicken, spinach and carrots.

To start I sliced my carrots- more than the recipe called for because Mmmm, carrots!- and set them aside.

Next I cut up my chicken and browned it in oil. The package tells you to coat your chicken in flour before frying it but I was like “nah” so I skipped this part.

Once my chicken had some colour, I added the carrots and package mix plus the recommended water -2 cups- and I brought the whole thing to a boil. I gave the lot a final stir, covered it up then turned the heat to medium low and let it simmer away for a little over 20 mins.

When the time was up, I chucked in the fresh spinach, covered it back up and took it off the heat. When my greens were wilted to my liking I stirred them in and served the whole thing up, after a quick seasoning of salt and pepper.

HOLY LEMON!

They weren’t kidding about the lemon. That’s pretty much all I could taste. I had to add extra salt just to cut the sourness a bit. It wasn’t horrible by any means but the lemon was very pronounced. It over powered everything.

So if you like lemon, this is a dish for you.

When I had it the next day, the citrus smack upside the head had mellowed and then I was finally able to truly enjoy the dish. I ate it with gusto and it turned out to be pretty tasty on day two.

The ingredients aren’t too bad at all:

and it was simple enough to make. It might be a fun way to introduce a younger person to cooking and if you’re exhausted from work and don’t want to cook much but also don’t want to eat garbage, this would be a decent option too.

I’m looking forward to trying the other one I bought. Look for it here next! Steak & Peppers. Brown Rice and Quinoa.

Happy Eating!

Micro- Dosing With Melatonin- An Update!

Oh my goodness! If you experience S.A.D and you are not using melatonin in your treatment plan, you are really missing out! I’ve been taking a very small dose of melatonin in the late afternoon pretty regularly for two months now to treat my very own seasonal depression and the results have been most pleasing!

Photo by rawpixel.com on Pexels.com

It’s September 27th as I write this, our temperatures have fallen- 0C as I type-, the furnace came on and I am not even mad!

New Lael, who dis?

Old Lael would have been mad – about everything really – and whining and complaining. But this year, I’m kind of…excited about the change. The cold air feels nice against the warm air in the house.

I am unbothered! I find I am unbothered about most things. And I have developed an awareness of the sneaky tricks my brain plays on me. I have a clarity. I question the mean thoughts that pop up and I’m less suseptable to being swept away with them. I’m not feeling that heaviness inside or the really deep blahs that steal away your motivation and joy, as often. And when they do show up, they leave me within days. I’m not experiencing the body aches and joint pain, at all. I have energy!

Photo by Vlad Chețan on Pexels.com

It’s too soon to call the whole thing a success just yet but I am experiencing a marked improvement in the S.A.D symptoms. Woot Woot!

Photo by rawpixel.com on Pexels.com

If you experience S.A.D as the light fades away with the seasons, it’d be worth it to do your own research to determine if it’s right for you! I’m amazed at how this one simple thing – .5 mg in the late afternoon!- can have such a positive effect.

Red Swan Pizza Review

There’s a new pizza place in town and I keep seeing their ads and then I got ahold of their menu and knew I had to give them a try! Red Swan Pizza.

They have such offerings as: Spicy Paneer “Spicy Cottage Cheese, Onion, Green Peppers, Tomato, Jalapeno, Pizza Sauce And Mozzarella Cheese ” and Butter Chicken “Butter Chicken, Onions, Green Peppers, Pizza Sauce & Mozzarella Cheese” and Tandoori Chicken ” Tandoori Chicken, Mushrooms, Red Onions, Green Peppers, Pizza Sauce, Jalapeno & Mozzarella Cheese” amongst just a few!

This time the Hubs and I chose a Hawaiian for him and the Coriander Chili Chicken for me. Mine was described as having fresh green coriander, marinated chicken, onion, green pepper and mozza cheese.

I was super excited to give it a try! (And super hungry too which is why I didn’t take any photos of the whole pie, ha ha ) But when it came … right away I could tell things were off. It just looked like one big red mass on top of one very thin crust.

Ok, fine. Not everything is going to look beautiful. And yes, while the photos on their website and flyer menu are so inviting, we all know the reality can be different, right?

We both dove right in anyway and it took about three bites before I started to get any flavour in mine.

“Meh” was my assessment. There was absolutely nothing special about it. I actually felt ripped off. The chicken tasted off. Not… bad, just off. Like chicken you’d get in a frozen meal. It had that taste and texture. There was absolutely NO fresh coriander anywhere to be seen or taste and while the sauce the chicken was in, was barely warm -in the spicy sense- there was no sign of chili, either. I was SO disappointed! This could have been such a great pie! The idea is a great one ( and I’m going to make my own just so I can experience it how I want it to be) but it was very, very, VERY poorly executed.

The Hub’s Hawaiian pizza was much the same. Underwhelming. The ham was just lardons of fat and the pineapple were dried out shards of no substance. And , in what I think was the worst crime of it all : both pies were really skimpy on the cheese. Not cool man! Especially when we paid 42 dollars for two pies!

One thing I did like: The sesame seeds on the edge of the crust. That was an interesting twist.

All in all, I would not order from them again.

A person would be better off to go to Pizza 73.

Hell, a person would be better of to go to Little Caesar’s and get one of their Hot and Ready Pies.

And that’s all I have to say about that!

Save on Foods- Online Shopping and Home Delivery Service.

A while back, the Hubs had to go out of town for the weekend and I had OV for a sleepover. This meant our usual routine was going to all messed up and getting groceries was going to be a bit of a pain in the arse.

What to do? What to do? I could walk up to the store and just buy what I needed for the weekend. I could do a regular shop and catch a cab home. OR I could use the grocery services our store offers and write about our experience here!

We shop all over the place but decided to use Save On Foods this time because their customer service is second to none.

You can shop right online, from their website- Save-On-Foods– but first you have to make an account for yourself.

This turned into a bit of a thing because I didn’t have the proper number on the back of my Save On More Card. _it’s 25 years old!- Once I got through to someone at Customer Service, it went smoothly enough and soon I was all set up and ready to shop from a store that offers the service, closest to me. (Not all of them do. You might not get your favourite store)

At first I was MOST FRUSTRATED because I was shopping via each section and I just wasn’t finding the things I had on my list. I quickly figured out it was way easier to type in what I wanted directly into the search bar. That sped things up and I eventually found most of what I was looking for.

After I got a few items in my cart, I was prompted to reserve a delivery slot and informed I only had so much time to complete my shopping. I think it was a two hour window. It only took me about an hour and that was only because there was a bit of a learning curve. So I reserved my slot, continued on and was delighted to find I could even shop directly from their online flyer! How cool it that!?

You’re shopping from an actual store, not a warehouse so some things are not always going to be available. For me that was miso and zucchini (but I managed to find a decent zuke in the garden and worked in a field trip to T&T supermarket with OV for miso, so it was all good) You can also state your preference and leave notes for your shopper. I chose to click that substitutions were ok with me, because I thought it’d be fun to see what another person thought was a good substitute. There ended up being no substitutions. I think I’ll keep doing that. The driver told me that’s the best way to do it unless you have food restrictions or allergies. It ensures you get the things you need. (SO long as you’re not a major hard ass about stuff, I guess)

After reviewing my cart, I paid for the groceries via credit card- you can use your visa debit too- and that was that. All I had to do was wait for delivery.

You’re given a window of time and the driver will call you 15 mins before they arrive. If it’s your first time with them, you’ll have to show ID too.

The driver did all that and then carried the bags up to the door to me. ( You can request no bags, which I will do next time) I’m sure if I’d needed help, he would have brought them directly in. I have dogs and people issues so that’s always going to be a “No Thanks” for me. ( At least until not given the choice. ) Save On Foods employees are not allowed to accept tips. Just know that to save yourself some awkwardness. He explained a few things to me and then went on to continue with his day and I spent 10 mins unpacking my groceries, feeling quite pleased with myself and the whole thing.

It felt like Christmas because I’d kinda forgotten what I’d bought so it was a fun exercise to open each bag, ha!

All in all I would do it again. It was pretty much painless and the service was excellent. Would it replace my weekly shopping trip? Not until it had to. I like shopping and I find the act of going up and down the aisle triggers memories in me of things I forget on my list, ha ha. BUT the other side of that is that I didn’t spend a lot of extra money on things I don’t need, things that catch my eye..so there’s that!

Your first delivery is free and then there is a fee, depending on where you are from the store. Mine would have been about $7.00 which is completely reasonable. Don’t tell them, but I would pay a whole lot more than that for the service. 🙂 I highly recommend!

Matzo Ball Soup Mix Review.

You might remember, way back in Lune, that I bought myself some soup as part of my 30 day present extravaganza.

In the past I’ve bought the Matzo Ball mix but never with the soup. I like to make my soup myself. Soup from a mix didn’t seem all that appetizing.

Well, obviously I am dumb Dumb with a capital D because this mix was AMAZING. No. Seriously. Read on.

This is what it looked like:

I got the mix at Save on Foods in their World Foods section. (Don’t we live in the world too? ) Right next to the East Coast stuff ( Aren’t the Maritimes a part of this country?)

You mix up the matzo meal with two eggs, some oil and water according to these directions:

Give it a chill and roll them into balls.

You cook the balls in the soup mix until they puff up like this:

And enjoy!

The whole process couldn’t have been easier. I enjoyed them on a wet and dreary day and they were just the thing. They are economical too. This one package which cost me 6 dollaroonies or so, fed me for 3 meals.

How did they taste? Divine!

That soup mix was SO good. Perfectly seasoned without being salty. So clear and clean tasting with a very nice celery flavour. I didn’t end up using all the soup and I thought nothing of adding the remainder to my precious master stock. The matzo balls were weighty and satisfying without being too dense. They were creamy and flavourful. I do believe, this is my favourite soup of all time. It’s well worth the try.

What’s your favourite soup? Is it from a can or mix, or homemade?