Farmers’ Market Cooking Class at Le Dolci

Tuesday, June 10, 2014 8 0

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I love food.  I love how it tastes, I love how it smells, I love how it makes me feel.  I love thinking about food, I love planning our next meal, I love trying new foods and I love finding delicious new restaurants.  Being around food, learning about it, touching it, eating it . . . it all puts me in my happy place.  So when I had the chance to attend a Farmers’ Market Cooking Class at Le Dolci (the fabulous bakery and foodie studio where I learned to make French Macarons a few weeks ago), I could barely contain my excitement.

 

Le Dolci offers a fun selection of cooking and baking workshops.  Last week, I had the absolute pleasure of participating in the Trinity Bellwoods Market Class with (the very charming and very French) Chef Christophe Measson, a Pastry and Baking Professor at George Brown College.  The class began with a field trip across the street to the Trinity Bellwoods Farmers’ Market, where under the guidance of my new favourite Chef, we learned about and selected local, fresh ingredients.  We then headed back to Le Dolci’s culinary classroom, where we all participated in preparing (and eating) a delicious 3 course meal.  The evening was full of fantastic food, delicious wine, new friends and amazing company.

 

Lisa Sanguedolce, the owner of Le Dolci, (whom I’ve now met twice and absolutely adore), recently started a new travel company, Foodie-Trips.com.  Foodie Trips aims to educate, amaze and entertain those looking to broaden their gastronomic knowledge by offering unique culinary adventures around the globe.  Exciting adventures planned for the upcoming year include foraging mushrooms in the Italian Dolomite Mountains with a Michelin starred chef, learning to make croissants in Paris from classically-trained French chefs, and a food styling course on a beach in PEI.  All of these experiences sound right up my alley.  Future destinations for Foodie Trips will include New York, Singapore, England and Ontario.

 

Here are a few photos from the Trinity Bellwoods Market Class.  If you are in the Toronto area, I highly recommend this class (or any of the workshops) from Le Dolci.  The team at Le Dolci is just fabulous, super organized, and has a real passion for food.  I hope to one day soon join them on one of their amazing Foodie Trips as well.  It definitely won’t be hard convincing Justin to join me.  I hope you enjoy these photos!

 

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The menu for the night included:

–  Organic Bread paired with two Sheep Cheeses

–  Blinis topped with Smoked Trout, Sheep Cheese, Mushrooms and Chives

–  Arugula and Baby Kale Salad, with fresh Radishes and a home-made Lemon Olive Oil Dressing

–  Breaded Organic Pork Chops, marinated with Honey, Olive Oil, Sage, Garlic, Seasoning and Lemon Zest, served with a gorgeous Green Goddess Sauce, Fiddleheads with Sauteed Rapini and fresh Ontario Asparagus

–  Almond Streusel with Poached Rhubarb, Rosewater and Italian Meringue

 

Yum, yum, and yum!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Macaron Making Workshop

Friday, May 16, 2014 16 0

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I always surprise myself by how excited I get when thinking about desserts.  The thought of Banana Chocolate Cupcakes, Sour Cherry Pie, Chocolate Raspberry Cheesecake, Chocolate Chip Shortbread Cookies, and well, anything chocolate, actually causes a physical reaction in my body.  My mouth starts to water, my stomach starts to gurgle and my head feels cloudy with euphoria.

 

I’m not a great baker (or cook for that matter), but I really enjoy attempting to bake these sweets on my own, although that doesn’t happen very often.  I love doing crafts, and I look at baking as the ultimate craft because you get to be creative but in the end you have a delicious sweet treat to enjoy as a result of your efforts.  So last week when I discovered a Workshop on how to make the world’s most difficult pastry, the French Macaron, I was shaking with excitement at the thought of someone actually teaching me how to bake these little puffs of air, knowing full well that it would be a disaster if I attempted it on my own.

 

The Workshop was being hosted by Pink The Town, a great website and events company I discovered through Instagram.  They hold different events about once a month in Toronto.  This was my first time attending one of their events, and let me tell you, I was thoroughly impressed.  The idea was great, the set-up was adorable, the location was perfect, and the instructors were fantastic.  I would highly recommend Pink The Town events, and I will most certainly be attending more in the future.

 

The Macaron Workshop was held at Le Dolci, an adorable bakery located on Queen West.  The ladies from Le Dolci were really sweet, and their desserts were delicious.  Good news for those of you wishing you had attended this event . . . Le Dolci offers Macaron Workshops along with other classes throughout the year.  Check out their website for a listing of their workshops.  I’m definitely signing up for their Trinity Bellwoods Market Class, lead by a local Chef.  The class starts with a trip to the local Farmer’s Market with the Chef, who teaches you how to buy fresh ingredients.  You then bring the ingredients back to their workspace where the Chef then shows you how to create a delicious meal with the ingredients you just purchased.  Such a fantastic idea!

 

Here are some photos from my Macaron Making adventure.  I caution you not to view these pictures on an empty stomach.  I hope you enjoy!

 

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The gorgeous sweet table set-up.

 

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Another pretty shot of the sweet table just because it’s too pretty not to share twice.

 

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Learning how to make the perfect meringue.  I had no idea how tricky it was to actually make macarons, and I’m so glad I was able to learn the tricks of the trade from a professional.

 

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Mixing, mixing and more mixing.  The instructor first showed us how to make the macarons, then we broke into two smaller groups and each attempted our own batch.

 

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The fabulous instructor showing us proper piping techniques.

 

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Making of the shells.

 

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Getting a little fancy with some heart shaped macarons.

 

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Look what I made!

 

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My baking buddies for the night, Ashley and Alex.

 

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The final product.  We each were able to take home over a dozen of these delicious bad boys.

 

 

 

Up High, Down Low

Saturday, June 23, 2012 100 0

Dress: Lush. Belt: Aldo. Handbag: Balenciaga City. Shoes: Nine West. Sunglasses: Chanel. Necklaces: H&M. Ring: BCBG. Bracelets: Forever 21, Chain is a gift from a lovely friend.

 

The high-low skirt trend is definitely not for everyone.  I have some friends who are very opinionated when it comes to the mullet dress.  As you’ve seen, I’m definitely a fan, as worn here, here and here.  Are your rocking the high-low style this season?