Your Chance To Help The Homeless

Around the same time you get home from work and take off your tie or scarf, about 30,000 home­less Canadians are fig­ur­ing out where they are going to sleep that night. On May 7, 2014, Mary Wiens of CBC radio’s Metro Morning will host Homes First’s sec­ond annual fundraiser, ‘Tie One On,’ to raise funds to help house the 5,000 home­less peo­ple liv­ing on the streets of Toronto. Continue »

Putting the Easter Bunny on the Menu



For many peo­ple cel­e­brat­ing Easter this week­end, Easter Sunday din­ner means a feast of ham, or rack of lamb, or that old hol­i­day standby, turkey. This year, why not try some­thing dif­fer­ent and deli­cious, like rab­bit? If you’re the type who eschews choco­late bun­nies, there is still the oppor­tu­nity to indulge in a lit­tle bunny love, albeit of a more savory kind. Continue »

Spring! Not Quite Sprung

Snowdrops are still blooming in many gardens. Usually they'd be finished by now.

Snowdrops are still bloom­ing in many gar­dens. Usually they’d be fin­ished by now.

April really has been the cru­elest month this year. Our win­ter sim­ply would not leave, like the dread­ful last guest at a party. We’re about a month later than usual in the gar­den sea­son: Early cro­cuses are a no-show, and the maple tree’s frothy green flowers—that wel­come swath of green in April that’s spring’s true marker—haven’t yet made an appear­ance. But we can still dive in and get ready to gar­den. Here are things you can do to kick off your gar­den­ing season.

  • Start tak­ing house plants out­doors. Philodendrons, pothos, dra­cena, san­sev­e­ria, suc­cu­lents, etc. Make sure you place them in a shady spot for first few weeks. North side of a house is good. Direct sun out­doors will burn leaves if you make a sud­den change from indoor gloom to intense out­door rays.
  • Monitor night-time tem­per­a­tures, and be ready to cover any house plants you’ve placed out­doors if weather goes below zero, (use a blan­ket or a duvet, topped with an old shower cur­tain) or  bring back inside overnight. Keeping plants in trays helps with this, until you can safely leave out with no chance of frost.
  • Take herbs out­doors, like rose­mary you’ve over­win­tered, again, in the shade.
  • Loosen leaf mulch on gar­den beds, or remove entirely to let sun warm soil. You can add mulch back later on in sea­son when things heat up again.
  • Turn on your out­door tap and attach your gar­den hose.
  • Fertilize your house­plants, or gera­ni­ums you’ve over­win­tered. Use a half strength solu­tion of organic liq­uid fer­til­izer, like kelp.

Passover Begins Tonight



Tonight, April 15 at sun­down, marks the begin­ning of Passover, the week long hol­i­day that com­mem­o­rates the lib­er­a­tion of the Jewish peo­ple from slav­ery under Egyptian rule, over three thou­sand years ago.  According to the Book of Exodus, the Egyptian Pharaoh freed the Israelites after God tor­mented the Egyptians by vis­it­ing ten plagues upon them, cul­mi­nat­ing in the death of the first born in all Egyptian house­holds. Jewish fam­i­lies, instructed by God to mark their homes with the blood of a spring lamb were spared, “passed over” by this lethal power. It is said that the Israelites had so lit­tle time to leave that that they didn’t even have time to wait for their bread to rise, so they took with them flat, unleav­ened bread, or matzo, and thus was born the tra­di­tion of eat­ing only unleav­ened bread for the dura­tion of the hol­i­day. Continue »

3 Great Reasons To Throw A Pizza Party



The Toronto Raptors are in the NBA play­offs, the Montreal Canadiens are in the NHL play­offs and the Toronto Blue Jays have just started the 2014 base­ball sea­son. If you are a sports fan you are feel­ing pretty good right now and those three things are rea­son enough to throw a pizza party. I’ve got just the cook­book to help you do just that. Pizza: Seasonal Recipes from Rome’s Legendary Pizzarium this cook­book is by the man Vogue mag­a­zine called “The Michelangelo of Dough”. Gabriele Bonci has been devel­op­ing his sig­na­ture style at his small pizze­ria in Rome. He uses stone-milled farro flours and relies on the sea­sons to deter­mine his uncon­ven­tional top­ping com­bi­na­tions. He comes up with more than 1500 dif­fer­ent top­ping com­bos each year! This guy knows his pizza and this book is going to show you how it’s done.  Continue »