Canadian winters were a highlight of our childhood. For those of you who live in places where the climate is always sunny, or rainy, or foggy, or windy – but never snowy, allow us to paint you a picture. It will be white. All white. Glistening white so bright, that at certain times of the day staring at it hurts your eyes.
As kids we quickly learned that not all snow was created equal. There is the powdery soft fresh fallen snow that was perfect for falling into backwards. We would stare into the sky while doing horizontal jumping jacks and then carefully stand up and then stand back to admire our created snow angel. There are the big, beautiful snowflakes that fall so gently, landing on your lashes and on your tongue as you stick it out for a taste of winter. There is the wet snow that is exactly what you need to make the best snowman, the best snow fort and the best snowballs. You have not lived until you have spent three hours building a snow fort with your friends and then another three bombarding your neighbourhood rivals with snowballs.
A vegan and fruity pick me up, perfect for any time of day
Many people turn to smoothies when they are trying to lose weight, or eat healthier, or feel better about the 3 pieces of bougatsa they had the night before. We get it, and that’s okay. But we’re here to tell you that there’s another reason to enjoy smoothies – because they are delicious! And, they are a fun way to get some fruits, veggies and other goodies into people (kids? husbands?) who may otherwise be less inclined to welcome them into their diet.
It’s peach season where we are! The beautiful Niagara peaches are now available in the grocery stores and outdoor markets and we are beyond excited! There is nothing quite like the juices of a ripe, sweet peach dripping down your chin. Messy? Sure. A little gross? Well, we don’t actually think so, but we suppose some might.
Although these peaches are amazing to enjoy just as they are, they are also incredible to use creatively. So, we’ve got quite a peach week in store for you all.
A Greek aperitif cocktail make with strawberries and watermelon
Cheers to summer! We love to entertain at home, and now that our world has changed, inviting a few guests over for an evening under the stars is even more appealing. Not really bar and club people to begin with (those days are long gone), the idea of going out to mix and mingle with too many other people is a little unsettling. So, we’re thankful to have the opportunity to host comfortable get-togethers chez nous. And we’re even more thankful to ouzo, the lovely anise flavoured liqueur that we have grown very fond of playing with.
Greek chamomile tea made with basil and sweetened with honey, served over ice.
According to our mother, if you don’t have basil at home, you don’t have anything. That’s a little dramatic we think, and also problematic because keeping fresh basil alive during our Canadian winters is sort of impossible. Still, we think we understand what she’s trying to say.
The classic Greek liquor infused with Quebec blueberries and a touch of basil.
We are all the product of so many different parts. Today, we thought it would be fitting to marry two flavours, from two different parts of the world, both of which are integral to who we are. The first, ouzo from Greece. Our parents’ homeland, the land of our cultural heritage, our family, our deep-rooted identity. And second, blueberries from Quebec. Our birthplace, the province where we have lived our whole lives. It seems fitting especially today as we celebrate the Quebec National holiday of Saint-Jean-Baptiste, and the Christian holiday of the nativity of the Forerunner, John the Baptist, a very important day in our Orthodox faith tradition. So, we decided to mark the occasion in the best way we know how – through food, and drink.
A summer cocktail with pureed cactus pear, fresh orange juice and Metaxa
This drink is inspired by our desire to make something special using our dad’s favourite fruit, the cactus pear. The plants of cactus pears, also known as prickly pears, or fragosyka in Greek, can be found in the rocky terrains of Greece across much of the country, including the Peloponnese where our family is from.
Cold coffee the Greek way, with the addition of vanilla ice cream.
This post is sponsored by Ice Frappe. All opinions on this post are ours.
We were recently gifted a beast of a machine; a powerhouse of froth-making which produces the most extraordinary frappé we have ever had. Add to that the addition of amazing Nektar coffee, and you’ve got yourself a very happy situation.
Our Kalko Frappe machine was something we didn’t realize we were missing, until we used it. Not only does it make an amazing frappe, it can also be used to mix other cold drinks, and cocktails! Are you as thirsty as we are? Thank you Ice Frappe for the gifts!
Frozen honeydew, mint, lime juice and just the right splash of ouzo for your drinking pleasure
Our daughters are smoothie lovers. Breakfasts, snacks, and late night hunger pangs are often addressed with a medley of frozen fruit blended together with either milk or juice. So easy, they’ve been in charge of their own smoothie-making for years. Our job is to ensure that there is enough frozen fruit available, and to supply a lovely, colourful variety to keep things interesting.
Although we purchase bags of frozen fruit there are some choices that you just can’t find easily. And so, we cut up things like papaya, cantaloupe, passion fruit (yes, we are exotic over here), and freeze the chunks on baking sheets before transferring them to a freezer bag. One afternoon, feeling inspired and thirsty, and needing to free up some freezer space for the spanakopita we had made for another day, we decided to make some adult smoothies.
A simple vanilla milkshake with the perfect ratio of ice cream to milk
So here’s something that you should know about our mother. Like many other people of her generation, raised in Greece during times of economic hardships, our mother has always been quite sensitive to signs of health and wellness. For instance, according to our mother, anyone who looks even slightly underweight is cause for concern. Perhaps they aren’t eating enough. Perhaps they are sick. Perhaps they need her to intervene.