Bar Fancy

I first went to Bar Fancy back in March with Cynthia. We were looking for a place to grab a drink and have a much needed catch-up session. We had heard that Bar Fancy had amazing fried chicken and what better and more appropriate way to spend a girls’ night then to eat fried chicken and drink beer?

IMG_3518 IMG_3522Bar Fancy is on Queen Street and is very easy to miss. Despite having huge glass windows the view is obscured by hanging plants in macramé baskets that your Nonna would have. You have to go down a long sketchy alleyway that is only lit by a badass neon tiger overhead. The inside of the bar is nothing special: dimly lit, store cozy tables and simple décor allowing the food to be the focus of the menu.

We ordered a plate of fried chicken. If you visit the restaurant between 5-7pm each night, order you can get fried chicken for $2.00 apiece. This is an amazing deal because typically the chicken is $18.00 for 4 pieces.

IMG_3521The chicken is presented very simply: on a Frisbee with a wedge of lime. There are no pretenses about the chicken or trying to make it into something it clearly is not. The pieces are huge; 2 pieces is enough for a snack but why would you want to limit yourself to only 2 pieces of this deliciousness? The chicken is meaty, buy tender, and a little greasy without soaking your face. The batter is crunchy and you can bite into the chicken without removing all the skin with one bite. The batter is slightly spicy, enough to give you the taste of the spice but without lighting your tongue on fire and is salty without forcing you to drink 6 liters of water. It is the best fried chicken I’ve eaten.

We enjoyed our fried chicken with the spicy Thai salad. This is salad works well with the chicken. The heat and freshness of the salad help offset the heaviness of eating fried chicken. And it is spicy. By the end of the salad my mouth was on fire and seeking comfort at the bottom of my pint glass.

We have since been back to have more fried chicken but this time with a side of their tar-tare. Neither Cynthia nor I loved their tar-tare, and that’s not surprising. The tar-tare is on the menu for $10.00 which speaks to the quality of meat that would have to be used. The interesting thing is that they serve the tar-tare with an Asian flair – using sesame seeds and seaweed which add nuttiness and umami flavours to the dish.

I will go back to Bar Fancy again and again for their fried chicken and maybe even outside the hours of 5-7 pm because it’s that good that I’m willing to pay full price.

Happy munching!

White Chocolate and Nutmeg Bars

Photo credit: Better Homes and Gardens

As the days get shorter, and the weather gets cooler, it’s starting to feel a little more like Christmas. I know, I know: it’s the start of November, there is no snow, and it’s over a month away. BUT as a crafter and a baker, you need to start thinking about Christmas. Christmas is a month long event. Between parties, decorating, baking and shopping you need to start thinking about these things!

I made these white chocolate and nutmeg bars for Thanksgiving but the flavours are perfect for the holiday season too! The bars have a beautiful colour to them – the warmth of the brown, dotted with fresh, plump, red cranberries and drizzled with white chocolate, it looks like a winter landscape.

I love the combination of cranberries and nutmeg. The fruity, tartness from the cranberries, softened by the warmth and spice of the nutmeg make these the perfect treat to enjoy with a warm cup of tea or hot chocolate.

I will definitely be making these again for Christmas and I think you should too! Recipe below the cut and happy munching!

Continue reading

Cream Cheese Swirl Pumpkin Bars

Another way to use pumpkin – make cream cheese swirl pumpkin bars!

Photo Credit: Kitchen Meets Girls

But don’t actually because I didn’t love these. They were extremely moist, like when you spill milk on your dessert plate. There was too much pumpkin in these bars. The cream cheese swirls added to the extreme moisture of the bars and made it that you had to put the bars in the fridge. I don’t like putting desserts in the fridge – it makes me forget about them and they inevitably end up with a “fridge” taste to them.

There was a nice blend of spices that made you feel warm and cosy, a little bite of fall. These spices highlighted the fruity, harvest taste of the pumpkin. Because of the sweetness from the pumpkin I don’t think the chocolate chips were necessary to make these bars complete. There is already a heavy, sweetness from the pumpkin; the chocolate puts that sweetness over the top.

Recipe is below the cut. Happy munching!

Continue reading

Valentine’s Day Treats for My Love

Happy Valentine’s Day! A week late!

Obviously if you are dating me you are going to get baked goods from me! I tried to make this festive as possible but not too cumbersome and annoying to unwrap – I used heart tissue paper and white and red curling ribbons.

On the inside there was three different types of cookies:

From left to right: Linzer Cookies, Oatmeal Cranberry Cookies and Red Velvet Cream Cheese Brownies.

1. My Linzer cookies. I made these the wrong way which, if you have eaten Linzer cookies before, you quickly realized I made these incorrectly. I forgot that the bottoms of the cookies are supposed to be solid rather than cutout.I also used my favourite sugar cookie dough rather than the traditional almond meal dough used for linzers.

2. GC said his favourite type of cookie is oatmeal raisin. When he requested this type of cookie for his Valentine’s treat I was a little surprised. I used the Betty Crocker’s recipe for Oatmeal Raisin cookies and I substituted the raisins for cranberries so they would be more festive. These were perfectly chewy – I think that can be attributed to the shortening and butter that is used.

3. Red Velvet Cream Cheese Brownies. These were terrible. I don`t know if it is because I used gel food colouring instead of liquid or because I doubled the batch. Regardless, I am not willing to try these again. They were really chocolaty though which was good. No close up – I don`t want to think about or look at these anymore.


Magic Cookie Bars

One of the recipes I made at Christmas time called for 1/4 cup of condensed milk which left me about 3/4 of a can of condensed milk. Now, clearly this isn’t a problem because there are a number of recipes that use condensed milk. The only problem is the can sat in my fridge covered saran for about a week, taunting me and asking to be added to tea and coffee.

I pulled up the first recipe that popped up on the Eagle Brand website, Magic Cookie Bars.

1. This is a great recipe. It is super quick, easy and uses very little dishes. I melted my butter in a big bowl, that I then mixed my graham cracker crackers in. I used a total of 5 dishes – a bowl, a spoon, a baking dish, and two different sized measuring cups.

2. Lots of chocolate, lots of coconut. Lots of yum. The magic comes from (no, not any type of drugs) the condensed milk – anything with condensed milk is going to be delicious and magic. Oh and love, love is part of the magic…

3. I think these would also be delicious with some dried cranberries, or butterscotch bits.

4. I don’t understand the “cookie” part of these squares – the bottom of these bars is just graham cracker crumbs and butter… not really a cookie but delicious. I think this is just a misnomer. We will just call them ‘Magic Bars.’

5. This recipe is definitely a “make again, as soon as possible” recipe. One of my co-workers called me after eating one and said, “Don’t take this the wrong way but I’m glad I don’t sit beside you.” Yes – if you have the pleasure to sit beside me at work, or even just work with me in general, expect to gain a pound or two.