Tuna Tartar

Posted in Uncategorized on April 8, 2010 by mtlfoodie

Hello foodies!
Wow! It has been a lot longer than I thought. What with moving, changing jobs and a hole bunch of other stuff going on in my life I apologize for not updating this blog.
I have still been going to many other new and EXCITING restaurants, in which I will be writing about in the up coming week.
Today however I would like to share a recipe with you and most importantly for a good friend I hold close to my heart.

Tuna tartar!
I have been to many, many restaurants and when ever I see Tuna tartar I almost everytime without fail have to try it. Just to see if it is better than mine. The one I am going to share with you is fairly simple leaving the flavor of the tuna intact.
Ok, first and most important, do not cheap out on the tuna part! After all it will be raw (somewhat) and it is the main ingredient. So make sure you buy sushi grade ahi tuna.
Now I could show you an Asian way using sesame seeds & oil, soy sauce, green onions, ginger, lime and even cilantro but what’s the point. Google Tuna tartar and that is for sure going to be the first recipe you come across.
So enough talk here is the recipe.

Spicy tuna tartar w Avocado relish

Avocado relish:
Avocado diced (1 or 2)
About half a small red Onion (finally chopped)
red pepper (cut into small cubes or brunois)
Dill (if you like)
Juice of one lemon
Juice of one lime
olive oil (add enough so the avocado doesn’t brown as fast)
salt and pepper
Mix in a bowl, cover and set aside

Spicy Tuna tartar:
Sushi grade ahi tuna (finely chopped or cubed)
Dill (chopped and add according to taste,about 1 tbs should do the trick)
chives (finally chopped)
sambol (this is the heat so add to taste as well. I like mine spicy.) Just incase you didn’t already know not only acids cook the fish, so does spice. So if you are not serving it right away hold off on the heat.
Lemon (optional, I prefer not adding the lemon. I find it changes the texture of the tuna and cooks it to fast. If you don’t know just leave it out and serve lemon wedges on the side)
Olive oil (extra virgin if you have)
salt pepper to taste
In a bowl mix all of this together

Croutons :
Simply cut some baguette place on baking sheet and brush with olive oil garlic and butter mixture. Sprinkle some chives, salt and pepper and bake until golden. Oven can be as hot as you want it to be, just keep a watchful eye. Can’t count the amount of times I have burned croutons in the oven forgetting I even put them in.

So that’s it! Really simple and delicious dish!
When serving try and find some molding rings. On a plate stuff one with the avocado relish and the other with the tartar. Place a few croutons on the side and dig in!

Hope you enjoy this recipe as much as I do and like I said earlier more to come this week so stay tuned!


jamais d’oeufs sans toi

Posted in Uncategorized on March 3, 2010 by mtlfoodie

First I would just like to say sorry for the lack of activity lately lets just say I had a crazy week.

It is just what you would think a breakfast place should be. Collections of chickens and roosters all over, baskets with eggs, wood beams on the ceiling, walls made to look like a barn and comfy seating. I really love this place and I really love breakfast.
I always say a good breakfast place you can judge by there home frys and coffee. Grand mere poule Located on Mont-Royal and Beaubien hits both of these right out of the ball park. Banana bread is killer, bacon always perfectly cooked. Truly one of my favorite breakfast places to visit.
Madame bolduc located 4351 avenue de Lorimier. Also a cozy breakfast/lunch joint this place serves breakfast all day so all you late risers don’t have to worry. Oh and if you like creaton as much as I apparently do…Then try this place out.
Restaurant L’Avenue located 922 Mont-Royal Est this place is trendy hipster place, portions are big, food is great, only thing is it is a tad more expensive then so many other delicious breakfast places out there. Also the bathrooms may give you bad flash backs of the club you visited the other night. That aside it is a place you should visit I heard there lunch menu is pretty good and drinks are BIG!

I know I said in previous article that I would be covering Pub food. I have been looking and have found some great places. Problem is I have to remember I’m there for the food and not the many many pints of delicous beer.

Stinky runny cheese

Posted in Uncategorized on February 26, 2010 by mtlfoodie

Yes that’s right stinky runny cheese. Lactose intolerant beware!

So much to say about cheese, I will however try and keep it simple as possible. I won’t go into what wines you should drink with cheese, will leave that for you to decide. (I will say stronger wine, stronger cheese. Follow that and you should be just fine.)
Instead I will try and guide you through what I feel to be the proper way of eating cheese.
First important step to picking out cheese is smell your cheese. Not only when you are buying it but when you eat it too. Study’s have proven that your nose can carry over 10,000 different smell receptors, where as your tongue can only detect 4 or 5 senses (salty,sweet,sour and bitter)
Second very important step to eating cheese is room temperature. I can’t stress this enough, never eat cheese right out of the fridge. Leave it out for 1-2 hrs if possible. This will enhance what the flavors and smell’s are meant to be.
Thirdly when presenting cheese, traditionally you want what is called a tasting board either a marble slab or wooden cutting board.
The conventional way to arrange a cheese board is to progress clockwise from soft to hard, and mild to strong.
I read somewhere that when you eat cheese it is important to label a word for each cheese you are tasting that will help you verbalize what you like and dislike the next time you order cheese. Some words that come to mind are: Sharp, pungent, earthy, grassy, sweet, spicy you get the idea.

Last but not least what to serve with your platter. A good crusty bread, jam, some fruits such as fig’s,prunes,pears,grapes and a selection of nuts are great to accompany your platter.

Some I like are:
One of my favorites is a Vacherin which is way more creamy and stinky.Typically French or Swiss.
Blue cheese, most people cower from this one, I however love it! Mold, when it comes to cheese is good! try putting it in a salad or even on a steak.
Gorgonzola, for you people who aren’t to sure about blue cheese but still want to try it, this is a great place to start.
Mimolette, what I label to be an orange parmesan or edam.
Saint-André, it’s like eating butter so damn good.
Oka of course living in Quebec I’d have to mention this. This is one hell of a stinky cheese. Aged 30-60 days and was once made by Monks. Sort of a Port-du-Salut style cheese.
And typically a sharp cheddar aged 2-4 years. (not talking about that orange cheese we are all used to buying at the grocery store.)

A great place to visit is La fromagerie Hamel located on Mont-Royal and Saint-Leonard. If you have any questions or just want to try new, the people there are more than helpful and super friendly.
Also a restaurant downtown Alpenhaus locted on Saint-Marc this place is very much a Swiss restaurant, a great place for cheese lovers and I have to admit… I kind of like fondue.

Thanks for reading, hope you enjoyed it and thought it was gouda! I think next blog will be on Pub food. Is there good pub food out there? If so I’m going to find it! Stay tuned.

I must have been Portuguese…

Posted in Uncategorized on February 24, 2010 by mtlfoodie

I’m not but I swear I must have been in a past life. Feed me chicken, lamb chops, octopus, sausage, rabbit, quail, sardines all cooked on a grill and I’m a happy man.
Accompany that with a side order of olives,bread a good Portuguese olive oil and some wine and we’re dancing.
One of my favorite places at the moment to go for that is Jano’s located 3883 St Laurent, corner Des Pins. This place always leaves me hungry but my belly full. I can’t get enough of it, seriously.
Smoked mussels, merguez sausage, house wine is good (surprise) and even the bread to soak up what ever is left on the plate. Yum.
The price is fair about 10-25 $ a person.
Atmosphere warm and inviting, there’s a window at the entrance where you can see all the delicious meats of sorts cooking slowly on the grill and what looks to be the same chef cooking it since, well since forever.
On that I’ll leave you off with a Portuguese quote a butcher I know always says to me “A sorte protege os audazes” which ruffly translates in English to “who dares wins”.
So dare people dare and you will win at least at Jano’s.

Side note: Soon I will be getting proper pictures of all these places and hopefully even inside the kitchens ext.

Follow up on sushi

Posted in Uncategorized on February 22, 2010 by mtlfoodie

We arn’t all lucky enough to live in Japan to eat at this place but damn this looks like great sushi.
Drool over this sushi lovers and watch Anthony Bourdain do it right. This is part 5 of 5 you can go back and start from part 1 if you like.
When I finally get the chance to go to Japan you can be certain I will be going there. Enjoy!

Sushi me

Posted in Uncategorized on February 22, 2010 by mtlfoodie

While there is in my opinion way to many places to buy sushi in Montreal and sadly many are a big waste of your time and money. I have found 3 places that I enjoy going. Either out of convenience (living so close) or just so damn good that I am willing to make the trek.
First one is Restaurant Ginger,Located on Pine and Saint-Laurent. I choose this one because it seems to be a place where allot of my friends go to hang out and its really good fresh sushi. Although this place is a tad more on the expensive side, I always seem to leave with a smile and a full belly. Bring your stretchy pants!
Second is going to have to be Bleu Caramel. Located on Mont-Royal and De La Roche. I have heard some bad reviews from this place. I thought the sushi and the atmosphere was great. It’s the typical take your shoes off, sit on the ground type place. This was the first time I tried eel and I actually loved it! Get this it came as a typical sushi roll yet warm and with barbq sauce instead of soya. The place is not to expensive and the service was friendly. If you go you may notice the weird selection of art work that surrounds you, I’m not going to tell what it is but you will laugh.

Ok last but not least Depaneur sushi located on Mont- Royal. Don’t be fooled by the name, they tend to sell stuff from Japan on the side of the store but mainly its good sushi!
I choose this place for the price and they do a great tuna tartar! If you knew me at all you would know that I am a big sucker for tuna tartar,lime,soya sauce,roe and some panko. This place is small so its mainly for delivery, but does seat a up to 15 people. They have great deals if you are craving sushi for lunch as well. Don’t worry this place is fresh sushi hand rolled by order. Also, If you want to pickup stuff to try and make your own sushi at home, they sell everything you will need and all kind’s of wierd Japanese drinks that I’ve never heard of.
Well that’s it for now…Wrote this in a bit of a hurry as I have to go out. So if you are reading this and know of any other places please drop me a comment!

Risotto ai funghi

Posted in Uncategorized on February 19, 2010 by mtlfoodie

Today I went to one of my favorite store located on Rachel street called Mycoboutique. If you are a mushroom lover like myself this place is not to be missed. They have every fungi from Dried mushrooms, fresh morels and pleurottes, truffles and oils and my personal favorite porcini.
So now I had a bag full of mushrooms (fresh and dried) and no real plan on what to do with them. Then it hit me… Risotto!

What makes a good risotto? Time I’d say. When you go to a restaurant it is hard to find a great risotto thats why I leave this dish for home.
So heres what I had:
Porcini mushroom’s
chicken stock
Risotto rice
Parmesan (fresh, don’t go using that Kraft stuff it is just not the same)
truffle oil I bought awhile back. It’s a little expensive but it’s worth it.

How it’s done:
With the dried porcinis I made about 3 cups of what is called porcini bouillon. Pretty easy, simply soak your dried mushroom’s in warm water for 30 minutes and keep the liquid voila! Bouillon.(what I like to do is use chicken stock instead of water to soak the mushrooms to inhance flavor) Place aside for now.
Next in a deep frying pan,melt about 3tbsp of butter at medium heat. Finely chop your onion, saute onion for 2 minutes, stirring often so the onion doesn’t darken.Throw in a sprig or two of thyme. Chop porcini mushrooms and stir them in. Now add risotto about 4oz (115grams) stir for 2-3 minutes. Add in the soaked porcini’s as well (keeping the bouillon)
Now pour ladleful of hot bouillon into onion mixture and stir slowly until liquid is absorbed. Repeat this step until risotto is tender and creamy, about 25 minutes. Remove risotto from heat and add 3 more tbsp of butter, parmesan cheese and truffle oil to your liking.

It’s a pretty easy dish and your friends will love it! If you don’t like mushrooms replace it with basically anything. Examples of anything can include, Rapini and pancetta with roasted garlic or even butternut squash. Want to replace the parmesan? Use gorgonzola! Be inventive the worlds your oyster eat it up!