Hancock Gourmet Lobster

Last week I came home to a big box from Hancock Gourmet Lobster. They sent me a couple lobster pot pies, and a couple lobster mac and cheeses (in a styrofoam cooler with ice gel packs!) for me to try and review.

Hancock is based in Maine but has a fully Canadian site with Canadian currency and shipping to Canada. The products are made in small batches with real ingredients so that the quality remains very high.

The lobster pot pies were super cute! They came in a reusable ramekin with a puff pastry lobster crust on top. After baking it for 25 minutes it looked like the pictures above. The good: Huge chunks of lobster, nice sauce, decent pastry. The bad: It wasn’t very full inside since all it is filled with is lobster and sauce. Could have used some vegetables or something too in my opinion.

I liked the lobster mac and cheese more. It was also filled with tons of lobster, like every second forkful had another big chunk. Yum. The cheese sauce was super rich and the panko topping gave it a nice crunch. It had mascarpone, cheddar, and parmesan in it. NOM. It tasted amazing but definitely a cheat meal!!!

I don’t get to eat lobster very often so these dishes were a special treat.

Disclaimer: I was not compensated for this post other than the free product, and all opinions are my own.

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Osoyoos 2014

We had such a nice time in Osoyoos last year we decided to rent Julie’s trailer for a whole week this summer. Rosemarie, Scott and I spent the whole week relaxing, and Lauren joined us for a few days as well. IT WAS GREAT.

The week started off HOT, but it cools down so much at night I didn’t find it uncomfortable. Plus whenever we got hot we just walked across the street and swam.

One day we drove up to Penticton to go tubing down a river. The scenery wasn’t as nice as Cowichan River tubing, but the current was a lot quicker so it was easier. Plus instead of shivering we were basking in the sun. I even bailed off my tube on purpose at one point! We brought wine in Rosemarie’s camel pack, which managed to make a $16 bottle of wine taste like a $3 bottle of wine. BLECH. Wine should be enjoyed from a glass, not a tube.

Now that we’ve done the river once we know how to do it better next time. First step: acquire a PARTY ISLAND. Second step: park at the bottom of the river and get a taxi to drive you up the river at the beginning. Third step: bring better drinks and snacks.

On the way back we stopped at Tickleberry’s for ice cream. I asked for a single cone in Nanaimo bar flavour and the guy said “Well our single cones have THREE scoops so you have to pick THREE flavours!”. WAT!! That’s too much ice cream. So we got child size, which still has two scoops and two flavours. (I had Nanaimo Bar and pralines & cream.) We couldn’t even finish our cones. Do they have infant size??

If I went back I would split a waffle bowl with someone else to avoid death by ice cream.

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After an afternoon of wine tastings we stopped at a U-Pick farm. We went in thinking we would just pick a few peaches since it’s cheaper than buying them. But then we found out they had tons of types of fruits and vegetables!! Most of the vegetables were in this massive overgrown patch. We picked a peaches, nectarines, peppers, and zucchini. Since it was already the end of August there wasn’t a whole lot of good stuff left, but it was still awesome. We kept yelling to each other whenever we found something. “JALAPEÑOS!!” And 99 cent/lb heirloom tomatoes?? That’s crazy! I bought all of them.

Side note: haven’t the tomatoes been amazing this summer? I don’t know I can eat winter tomatoes anymore after this incredible summer of cheap and flavourful tomatoes.

Scott hates corn, but we forced him to eat it several times. But that is corn at its best… fresh cob, tender kernels, covered in butter and salt. Om nom nom. I think he secretly enjoyed it…

We have figured out that you can cook corn on the BBQ (in the husk) anywhere from 5-45 minutes and it comes out the same, FYI.

Other stuff we did in Osoyoos:

  • tons and tons of games, especially Carcassonne
  • tons and tons of cross stitch
  • tons and tons of reading
  • tons and tons of wine and margaritas

Julie and Steve came up for the last couple days we were there too so we got to hang out with them a bit too. Julie made Osoyoos bellinis and Calvin took Rosemarie and Lauren out on the boat. We had a nice family dinner outside their cabin.

It was so nice to unwind and just hang out. We had very little things to stress about and it was awesome. SO nice after a summer filled with work.

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Trino’s Restaurant – Oroville, WA

One of the nights we were in Osoyoos the four of us decided to go across the border to Oroville, Washington for dinner and gas and groceries. Scott volunteered to be DD so Lauren, Rosemarie and I could go nuts on their obscenely cheap margaritas. This GIANT margarita fish bowl was $14.50!! It was funnnnnn.

Chimichanga del mar. Had (real) crab, scallops, shrimp, onions in a tortilla thing covered with sauce. Scott and I shared this. It was definitely big enough for two people. It was rich and tasty.

I think this was seafood enchilada? Crab something with a lot of cheese (clearly). Lauren said all he could taste was cheese.

Rose ordered prawn fajitas. The onions were nice and caramelized. Quite tasty. Giant. Good thing Lauren is a bottomless pit. ;)

Sopapilla for dessert. I forget what was inside the pastry bit, but it was covered in ice cream and strawberries. Was ok.

Dronk.

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Summer Pictures, Mostly Food

Sooo let’s just ignore that some of these pictures are like three months old……

Rosemary Rocksalt bagel with salmon, avocado and cream cheese. How can you even improve on this?? Perfection.

Two kinds of ceviche, guacamole and pico de gallo at La Mezcaleria. OM NOM NOM. With a ludicrously expensive margarita. (Best margaritas in town though).

GIANT VOLCANIC BOWL OF MOLTEN CHEESE AND CHORIZO. So greasy, so amazing. This is a once-a-year (or less!) food.

Pork tenderloin kebabs with vegetables and halloumi. Homemade tzatziki and tortillas. This was a team effort meal with Scott, Rosemarie, Lauren and I that magically all came together perfectly despite little planning.

Rosemarie and I finally did the crayon art project that she gave me for Christmas/AFFH. Making the crayons melt was so addicting.

The Jornas, at the PNE this year. Lesley took this picture.

I had a jalapeño popper grilled cheese. It took them like 30 minutes to make. Le sigh. But it tasted pretty good, it had cheese, peppers, cream cheese, corn chips!

Me broad jumping at the bobsleigh/skeleton summer tryouts. I did pretty bad, it was sort of embarrassing. But still fun, kind of. I think I was a lot better at running this year compared to last (still too slow though) but I actually got worse at broad jump (down to 1.75 m from 1.78 m). Yikes. And I was HORRIBLE at the underhand medicine ball toss. It kept slipping out of my hands!! Lots of work to do if I ever plan on being competitive.

So many more people than last year!! It was nice seeing some old friends from last season, and great to see some new faces! I am hoping that the group of recreational (and BC development) sliders gets bigger this year. It would be fun to have races with more people, especially girls!!

Manicure from last week. Stained glass/negative space. I did my left hand. Scott had to help me with my right hand. Maybe Rosemarie will post a link in the comments to the Salon Jorna picture she took.

A made pie! Peach pie! We had picked a dozen or so giant freestone peaches in Osoyoos last week at a giddy u-pick session. I whipped up two pies with homemade crust and everything. I usually don’t like pies because I hate cooked fruit, but peach pie is pretty good. Maybe because the texture of cooked peach isn’t very different than raw peach? This was my first time making crust and it went… ok. It’s a little tough. I think that happens when you overwork the dough? But overall the pie tastes GREAT. Making pies is very satisfying.

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Nairn’s Oatcakes

A few weeks ago the good people at Nairn’s sent me a bunch of oatcakes for me to try and review. After much consideration, here are my thoughts.

There were four types of savoury oatcakes. My first impression was that they were very dry. But putting a piece of cheese on them made them palatable. And then they started to grow on me and I started liking them more and more. My coworker told me that she used to eat oatcakes with butter on them when she was young.

The organic ones and the roughly milled were the most plain. The cheese flavoured one had a slight cheesy taste, mostly at the end. And the sunflower ones were slightly thinner and very nice. The sunflower ones were the most like traditional crackers we eat in Canada.

I liked that the list of ingredients was very short with simple things like oats and baking soda and sunflower oil. They aren’t gluten or nut free though, unfortunately.

The sweet oatcakes were way easier to eat. They taste delicious! Just the right amount of sugar so they’re not too sweet or too bland.

Scott and I liked the mixed berries one a lot (chewy raisin type bits) and the chocolate chip ones tasted like Dad’s cookies. Yum. The ginger ones were a bit too gingery for me but Scott and Rosemarie enjoyed them.

You cannot deny that they do slightly resemble a coaster though. Haha.

Some ideas from Nairn’s about what to top the oatcakes with: avocado and salt and pepper, or cream cheese. Nom.

I ended up eating a lot of oatcakes in the past few weeks. The absolute best part about them in my opinion is that they keep you feeling full for a really long time. I had two chocolate chip ones before my skeleton tryouts and felt energized and not hungry the whole time. And a couple oatcakes before going into the angiography department for a few hours keeps the tummy rumbles away when I used to have troubles with that before. The oats have tons of staying power and I’m glad I got to try them!

Disclaimer: I was not compensated for this post other than the free product, and all opinions are my own.

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