Thursday, February 24, 2011

Jewish Minestrone Soup

I fall into the category of people who could have soup every day. I've been hanging with the golden girls as a babysitter/general slave but no complaints - I'm in southern California escaped from the brutality of Canadian winter. My mother's friend "R", not to be mistaken with Psychgrad's "R" showed me her version of Minnestrone soup. We call it Jewish Minestrone and it's quite different than the Italian version that we're all very familiar with. It all begins with 2 packages of Manishewitz Minnestrone dry soup mix.

2 pkg Manischewitz Minnestrone soup mix
3 carrots, diced
3 medium sized diced potatoes
1 head cut cauliflower
1.5 pints sliced button mushrooms
6-8 cups water
1 tsp of granular chicken broth (such as Maggi or Osem)

Take both packages of the soup mix and add to the bottom of the pot.

Add cold water to fill a large pot approximately 2/3 full, keeping in mind you're adding a number of vegetables.
Bring soup mix with water to a boil and turn heat down to medium; cook until the pea and bean soup mix combination is beginning to soften.
Add the diced carrot to about 50% doneness.

Add potatoes and cook to approximately 50% doneness

Now the cauliflower and mushroom and continue cooking until all vegetablest are fully cooked without being mushy. Mix in the granular broth, stir well and you're done. StumbleUpon

Sunday, February 13, 2011


Ottawa may not be a hub for Mexican food...but we do have Ahora (and a few other places of varying authenticity).

It's a small, casual restaurant (almost fast food style), in the market. After picking your dish, you go up to the front counter to place your order. The food is then brought to your table. Even though it was -25 out, I couldn't resist getting a margarita.

The taste was great until I realized that the rim was covered with salt (I thought it was sugar)...after mixing the salt into the drink. I don't fault the restaurant because salt around the rim is (apparently) common and is meant to bring out the flavour of the margarita. Personally, I find the flavour combination gross.

We started with an order of chips and salsa. There wasn't much to them, but I took advantage of the hot sauce selections at the front of the restaurant, which made them more appealing.

For the main, R had a Burrito Grande. His verdict: "It was okay".

I quite enjoyed my Quesadilla de Pollo. Again, the free hot sauces were much appreciated.

In general, I'd go back... But, judging from other online reviews, I'm not as big of a fan as others who have visited the restaurant. I'd probably wait until summer to return because I found the restaurant to be quite cold. It's also hard to "swallow" the summer feel of the place when it's -25 out. The tables are fairly tightly packed in there, which is fine, unless your neighbours feel the need to yell the entire time. I think they got the hint when I yelled to R, "WHAT? I CAN'T HEAR YOU!" Gotta love the Canadian-style passive-aggressiveness. Service was friendly, price is good.

Ahora on Urbanspoon StumbleUpon
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