Friday, 30 September 2016

London Town: Details

Sooo, my last post contained too much chit chat and not enough photos! Nothing new there, HAHAHA! I thought I'd share more photos of what I've been up to here at home :)

I had a "play date" with a hilarious little runt (who I used to tutor in mathematics). I always make sure that I get girly time in with her while I'm home. Like me, she doesn't have an older sister (something I'd always wished for as a child), so I thought it'd be fun for her to hang out with someone who's a "big" (translation "old") sister. The coolest thing we did was make clay charms. Yeah, I'll always be a kid at heart. I do this with a friend's daughter as well, but somehow she and I didn't take ANY pictures. We were having too much fun I suspect :D

 We picked this up on a shopping trip to Indigo (Chapters)
Her pear :)
 My rendition of a crab, lol!
I made these two peas in a pod!
 She loves going to Sephora and swatching make-up. I treated myself to a RIDICULOUSLY expensive lipstick. I figured since I didn't splurge on anything in Oman, buying this was OK.
 Mostly, I bought it for sentimental reasons: it's my mother's name.
Gorgeous colour. Amazing formulation. Well worth the money.
My sister and I treated ourselves to haircuts and manicures since we almost never spend time together without my father (Nails: http://skinandnailscare.ca/ and hair: https://chatters.ca/).
I admit, I used to do this with whiteout in high school! Was I the only one who did that???
 My dad and I had a dinner date, too :)  We went for Korean at my favourite place: Kimchi House!!! Dolsot Bibimbap! YUMMY!!! https://www.facebook.com/pages/Kimchi-House/192630934135965
 Dessert was bubble tea at the new Chatime that opened in the west end! My dad TRYING to steal my bubble tea! http://chatime.com/#home
J'aime bubble tea (Excuse my TERRIBLE French, please!).
 I tried out Dolcetto (in Byron) with friends after reading about their delicious breakfast menu. I had high hopes for this place, but firstly, there was no brunch the day we visited. Secondly, although I waiter was initially quite friendly, by the end of our visit he seemed annoyed with us. It wasn't the best food I've had, nor was it the best service I've had. GORGEOUS ambiance, but I wouldn't recommend it.  Website: http://www.dolcetto.ca/#page1/1
 The dining room (before it got busy!).
My calamari salad looks great, but it was sooo bland :(
I was on a "find the best breakfast spot in London" mission! My dad and I tried Edgar & Joe's (http://edgarandjoes.ca/). I LOVE the ideas behind this location. Here's one: "Reduce Stigma: Provide a platform to dialogue, showcase success stories and learn/understand mental illness and social disadvantage with a view to breaking down stigma and eliminating attitudinal barriers." Read more here: http://edgarandjoes.ca/about/
While the food here was good. Customer service was either great or not-so-great. The highlight??? The coffee. A-MAY-ZING! I still think that The Early Bird is the best breakfast spot in the city though (http://theearlybird.ca/).
I probably would have been more impressed by the food at local restaurants, but I kept getting STUNNING veg from my friends' gardens!!! Kale, swiss chard, tomatoes and basil which I used to make...
Garden vegetable soup!!!
I also made chard, kale and spinach smoothies (I added a ton of other ingredients as well: coconut water, flax seeds, chia seeds, hemp hearts, honey, banana, orange, and strawberries).
 I couldn't resist! I made another banana loaf with almond and coconut flour. I can't get enough of this stuff!!!
A NEW pumpkin caramel cookie this year!!! I modified the recipe because there wasn't enough pumpkin flavour. I also reduced the baking soda because they were extremely "cakey" cookies. I'm not a fan of cakey cookies (as I discovered with the other pumpkin caramel cookies I made in Kuwait). Above: the batter.
Homemade caramel sauce!!!
The cookies fresh out of the oven. This wasn't the modified recipe. I modified it when I baked it at work (I help out working at a coffee shop named Wally's when I'm home: https://www.facebook.com/Wallys-Coffee-1458949661090902/?fref=ts).
My second attempt at Wally's was MUCH better! Yay!!!
A rare moment: the WHOLE gang at Wally's Coffee!!!
After shopping to make cheesecake :)
I'm not a fan of graham crackers, so if I can swap them out for something else, I WILL!!! The base consisted of Oreo cookie crumbs, toasted, crushed pecans and butter.
Before baking.
After baking: I made a turtle cheesecake for Josh's birthday. I think it turned out well! Everyone loved it and asked for the recipe.
 Honestly, it was SO decadent that I couldn't even finish my slice, lol! If you want the recipe, please let me know and I'll post it :)
The birthday boy with his birthday (cheese)cake!
Birthday Dinner: The spread!!! A lot of the veg came from the hosts' garden!!!
 Mmmm, barbecued ribs and chicken!!!
The highlight of dinner was the kale Caesar salad. The dressing was something to write home about!!! If you want a sample of Mo's AMAZING food, head over to Wally's Coffee! I promise you won't regret it!!!
Trying to get a group photo proved...Challenging! Embarrassingly, it took us WAAAY TOO MANY takes to get ONE good picture in. It was the timer!!! I swear! It was deceiving! None of us knew when the picture was going to be taken!!! Don't believe me? Laughs ahead...I mean below.
 "Do a funny pose!"
"Wait! Now?!?"
"No....NOW!"
"Doh!"
 Funny pose take TWO! Yeah, I couldn't stop laughing at the fact that we couldn't figure out the timer.
Birthday dinner!!! Look how tiny Kris looks! Why was I petting her on the head?!?
Toronto: I went to visit friends in Toronto and enjoyed lunch/dinner at The Hot House Restaurant (http://www.hothouserestaurant.com/).
Jambalaya!!! This was pretty dang good!!!
Crème brûlée was good, but not amazing :(
The next day, Jo bought this cheese (http://www.monfortedairy.com/) at the St. Lawrence Market (http://www.stlawrencemarket.com/), and THANKFULLY the Saturday Market (at the Western Fair Grounds in London) ALSO sells this! It's amazing and worth every pretty penny!!! I purchased lemon thyme bread from the Artisan Bakery (http://www.theartisanbakery.com/) to go with it! SOOO GOOD!!!

I'm still in London town for a bit while my visa for China is approved and processed. As I putter along here, I'll try to take more pictures, especially since we're transitioning from summer to autumn!!!

6 comments:

  1. Great post Mikiko!! gotta try the clay charms, it looks so much fun!! the cookies and banana bread looks so good! and the lipstick lovely :)

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    1. Thank you, May! Making charms IS fun! Thank you SO MUCH! Please let me know if you ever want the recipes :)

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  2. Oh, I used to do that with whiteout (we call it twink) all the time. We weren't allowed nail polish in school so we'd spend our time painting our nails with felt tips, twink, basically anything we could find. Its not nail polish!

    And yes please, I want the recipe for your cheesecake and your modified pumpkin cookies. The original ones were delicious. Can't wait to make the new and improved ones!

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    1. Darn, I don't think I published my comment as a "Reply" to yours! I DID respond...As a separate comment. Sorry!

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  3. Hi Layla!!!

    I KNEW I wasn't the only one who did that in school!

    For some reason, the cookie recipe link keeps redirecting me to bing.com (SUPER ANNOYING!), but try this link. IF that doesn't work, will you please send me an email? My address is fukudamikiko.mf@gmail.com and I'll give you the recipe in pdf format.

    Cookie recipe link:
    http://webcache.googleusercontent.com/search?q=cache:kOk806t-RYoJ:www.lovefromtheoven.com/pumpkin-caramel-cookies/+&cd=4&hl=en&ct=clnk&gl=ph

    As for the cheesecake recipe, I can't take ANY credit for it. The author, George Geary, is a genius! I bought this at least ten years ago for about $5 (Less than 1 and a 1/2 kwd), and it's been the best investment I ever made. Here's a link on Amazon for it: https://www.amazon.com/Best-Cheesecake-Recipes-George-Geary/dp/0778800547

    Would you prefer me to post the recipe in the comment section or email it to you?

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    1. Hey! Thanks for the cookie recipe. The page didn't redirect and I've taken a print out! Yes!

      If you would rather, you could post the recipe for the cheesecake in the comments so others can also check it out? Or.. my email address is leyajacob@gmail.com

      Either way, not a problem.

      Then, how is everything? Any chance of coming back to the sandpit?

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