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Double Stuffed Mushrooms - Smokey Stuffed Meatballs Baked in A Mushroom Cap




I made some really delicious Manchego Stuffed Meatballs with Romesco recently to serve as tapas style appetizer. In fact, they have been such a huge hit that when I found out that Mushrooms Canada was holding their annual mushroom appetizer contest for the members of the Food Bloggers of Canada, I looked no further, although it required a bit of tweaking.

Manchego Stuffed Smoky Meatballs with Romesco



I am on a mission to come up with a bunch of tapas style dishes that I can whip up for my summer entertaining because although I love to have guests over, I get in trouble for spending too much time in the kitchen while they are here. I have vowed to serve fewer items, served at room temperature or cold and that require very little last minute prep. Your guests want you to spend time with them, not leave them alone while you make magic happen in the kitchen, right?

Blend and Extend Tour with Mushrooms Canada and Ontario Beef




Taste of Toronto 2017


Hurry up, get off your butt and get down to Fort York for the annual Taste of Toronto festival, on until tomorrow, Sunday June 18. This is one of the first outdoor food extravaganza's in Toronto and it's always packed with vendors offering old favourites as well as the odd new discovery.





 The skinny:

general online admission tickets are $21/session for adults, $10 for 12-17 and under 12 is free but it's $26 at the gate so make sure to use this link to buy them online before you get there

There are premium VIP tickets that get you all kinds of extra stuff so you can see if those are sold out or not

In the past, they used a "crown" system where you had to keep reloading a card with crowns (worth a buck each) but this year, the only way you can pay is with a debit or credit card. To be honest, I think it's a good thing because it's easier to budget when you are spending actual dollars and it means no more lining up to refill your card with crowns, but it also means you HAVE to bring your credit/debit card or else you are out of luck.
CASH WILL NOT BE ACCEPTED
 There is a mixology lab, a tasting room (both are $5 to participate in their mini workshops and tastings), the Toronto Life Chef's Table where you can join in on a round table talk with your favourite chefs, the Metro Master Class for chef demos as well as the Taste Theatre.






Use this link to check out all of the menus on offer so you can pre plan your snacking - hmmmm ginger scallion noodle from Momofuko or Spring Pea Arancini from The Drake? You have to go in with an idea of what you think you might want to try because by the weekend, there will always be line ups at the most popular booths. It's best to go with friends and divide and conquer, meeting back up with all of your treats and then everyone can share a bite and taste everything.

Because I went alone, I only had the beef rendang croquettes from Little Sister, Sichuan Noodles from Momofuko and delicious prosecco negroni from Bar Buca. This is much better experienced with friends but only if your friends are not uptight and are on board with sharing. Uptight friends who recoil at the sight of an incoming fork should be left at home.

For all you chef groupies, here is your stalking.... I mean these are the chefs that are participating so be on the lookout. It's a who's who of popular Toronto chefs and one of the events where these guys are actually there, cooking, pressing flesh and interacting with the hungry public.


How To Do Chicago on a Whim




There are two ways to travel. One way is to plan and book months in advance. This usually means that you can get reservations at at least a couple of really hot restaurants, get tickets to popular shows and show up knowing exactly what you are going to be doing for the next few days. I have a certain admiration for people who are this organized.

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