The Beautiful Tomatillo

 

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Lookin for love….

 

Earlier this summer a grocer down my street gave me a sad little green plant in a plastic bag. A stem and a few wilted leaves. “I’m not sure what it is called in English,” she admitted. “It’s like a tomato,” she added shrugging. Curious, I planted the little thing and watered it everyday-it really likes water and got quite droopy without its daily shower. Over the next couple of months it has grown, and thrived, and is now approaching four feet tall and sporting hundreds of gorgeous little yellow flowers attracting butterflies and bees. It’s a real hangout. Still, I had no idea what it was until I posted a picture on social media asking about it and got a quick reply; mystery solved, it’s a tomatilla plant! Continue »



Pasta For Good – Amatriciana TO

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Our hearts go out to the people of Italy after the devastating earthquake that hit in August. We are so pleased to see the outpouring of compassion and help from people all over the world and from restaurants and chefs right here in Toronto.

If you are wondering how you can help might we suggest you do a little pasta tour of the city?  Continue »



In Praise of Green Tomatoes

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A red bell pepper is simply a green pepper that has ripened. But there is a big taste difference, and there are those that love red peppers but blanch at the thought of eating a green pepper. It’s kind of the same with tomatoes; a hard, green tomato is simply an unripe tomato, but what a difference in taste and culinary applications! And there are those among us that look forward to green tomatoes almost as much as their vine-ripened brethren, plucking them from the vine as soon as they get a hankering for a dish of fried green tomatoes or a batch of green tomato chow-chow. Continue »



Grilled Broccoli

 

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No doubt about it, Canadians love their barbecues, and grilling in the summer is practically a national pastime. We grill corn and eggplant, we grill extra veggies and save them in the freezer and we even use the barbecue to steam vegetables that we otherwise think inappropriate for grilling. And I’ll be the first to admit that, until quite recently, one of those vegetables that I didn’t think was so great on the grill is the humble but beautiful broccoli. Sometimes I love being wrong. Continue »



Are Your Hostas Sunburned?

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sunburn on hosta leaves

Have you noticed your hostas looking a little pale and papery in spots this summer? It’s the effect of the intense hot summer we’ve had, which is having a severe impact on our lush, leafy perennials, especially hostas.  Hostas, grown primarily for their foliage, are basically all leaves, and their huge amount of leaf surface makes them very vulnerable to sun damage. A hosta’s neat rosette of attractive leaves, facing upward towards the sun, just like a person lying on the beach, is almost asking for a sunburn.

But it’s not only the heat. Another unfortunate feature of our drought is endless days of cloudless skies, great for golfers, but not for leafy plants. The sun has been unrelenting. The lack of any cloud cover has been a huge factor in causing the sunburn damage.

Continue »