World Junior Hockey and Pizza Frittata – a winning combination

If you’re a hockey fan, you probably know the annual World Junior Championship (WJC) is in full swing in Ottawa. It started on Boxing Day (Dec. 26) and the gold medal game will be played on Jan. 5.

So far, Canada’s team has fared very well. Fingers are crossed that the streak will continue tonight with the highly anticipated match between Canada and the U.S.

I wouldn’t count myself as a true hockey fan, however I’ve been known to watch the occasional game. With a husband who scouts for the Kitchener Rangers, sometimes I don’t have a choice!

Modelling the Get Cracking Canada! tattoos we gave out at the World Junior Championship game on Dec. 28 in Ottawa

Modelling the Get Cracking Canada! tattoos we gave out at the Dec. 28th game of the World Junior Championships

Since Egg Farmers of Canada and Egg Farmers of Ontario are sponsors of the WJC, I attended Sunday’s game at Scotiabank Place – Canada vs Kazakhstan. It was egg promo night so a few colleagues and I handed out “Get Cracking Canada!” thundersticks and tattoos, as well as recipe cards for Pizza Frittata.

To get into the spirit of the game, we decided we should wear the tattoos we were giving out. The tattoos proved to be quite “permanent”! The one I put on my hand didn’t wash off easily after the game, so I decided to leave the tattoo on my face alone instead of trying to scrub it off. I did get a few comments and curious stares as I waited at the Ottawa airport for my flight back to Toronto. Once home, the tattoo came off with a little effort and a washcloth!

The Pizza Frittata recipe cards proved to be a popular giveaway. Most people like pizza, and a frittata (an open-faced omelette) is an easy thing to make. The cool thing about the cards is that they have a small packet of seasonings (containing mostly dried herbs) stapled to them.

pizza-frittata-recipe-card-front2

We give out these cards at many of the events Egg Farmers of Ontario attends. (I mentioned them and provided the recipe in my April 28th post, but I didn’t show what the cards look like. For convenience, I’ll provide the recipe again below.)

At first people are curious about the card, or more accurately, they’re curious about what’s in the packet. Sometimes the contents get mistaken for seeds….or for something illegal that can be smoked!! We had numerous comments about the latter at the game. Not so sure about that hockey crowd!?!

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When life gives you…..mushrooms?

Who doesn’t love getting free stuff?

I recently scored some free mushrooms. It helps to have friends who are in the business of promoting mushrooms.

Sauteed Mushrooms

Sauteed mushrooms for filling an omelette

After Wednesday night’s WOW Seminar in Paris (no, not Paris, France – Paris, Ontario – also a lovely place but minus the language problems I’d encounter if I hopped across the pond!), Nikki from Mushrooms Canada had some leftovers from her cooking demonstration. She kindly packed up a nice assortment and sent them home with me.

So, last night it was a simple mushroom omeletteĀ and a salad for supper. This weekend I’m making mushroom crepes. Might also make mushroom soup. Or maybe mushroom risotto……or stuffed mushrooms……

Mushroom (and cheese) omelette - a simple, tasty supper!

Mushroom (and cheese) omelette - a simple, tasty supper!

If you want to know anything about mushrooms (nutritional value, varieties, or how to clean, store or cook them), check in with the mushroom experts. Mushrooms Canada’s web site – mushrooms.ca – has everything you need to know, as well as recipes. There are also cooking videos starring my friend and colleague, home economist Clare Jones.

If you’d like to enjoy mushrooms in an omelette and are looking for a few tips on omelette making, check out the recommended omelette technique from Egg Farmers of Ontario. To make the omelette filling, I prefer sauteing the mushrooms first in a little oil or butter, then using them to fill my omelette. But you don’t have to cook the mushrooms if you chop them finely, then sprinkle them over your omelette before folding it over.

There’s also a recipe for a Wild Mushroom Frittata on EFO’s web site.

“Pressure cooking” takes on new meaning with start of new cooking show

There’s a new cooking show starting on TV tomorrow night. It promises to turn up the pressure on 16 Canadian chefs who test their cooking skills, stamina, and ability to handle stress and manage their egos as they attempt to outlast each other in an intense series of cooking competitions.

The Pressure Cooker pits the chefs against each other in a series of cooking competitions designed by chef Mark Walpole that require them to create specific dishes from mystery boxes of ingredients in very short time frames. To add to the excitement for viewers, the chefs wear wireless heart monitors that record their stress levels. The elimination-style format of the show gradually whittles the starting line-up down to two chefs who compete in a final grueling cook off.

The Tasting Judges – chefs Mark Picone, Cornelia Volino and Tawfik Shehata – are a demanding trio whose job is to taste, critique and score the dishes. Their standards are high and they aren’t afraid to voice their opinions, in no uncertain terms.

Kitchen Judges monitor the competing chefs’ performances as they prepare the dishes. They are tasked with eliminating chefs from the losing teams.

As a representative of one of the sponsoring organizations – Egg Farmers of Ontario – I was present for some of the week-long taping of the show which took place at Niagara Culinary Institute in Niagara-on-the-Lake in July. Judging by what I saw then, the show promises to be very entertaining. I don’t know the final outcome; that was kept very hush-hush! However, the show’s producer, Alan Aylward of Forevergreen Communications Inc., says he couldn’t have scripted the ending to be more exciting.

You can see a trailer of The Pressure Cooker at www.thepressurecooker.tv.

The hour-long show will air on Sunday (Nov. 2) at 10 p.m. on SUN TV and on Men TV Monday (Nov. 3) at 7 a.m., noon and 7 p.m. It runs for 9 episodes.

There will be an online component to the show where visitors to The Pressure Cooker’s website – www.pressurecooker.tv – are invited to answer trivia questions to win prizes.

Enjoy!

Good news about eating eggs

There’s good news about eggs – again!

If you’ve been concerned that eating eggs will raise your blood cholesterol levels, think again. Recent studies – including one from Harvard Medical School that followed 21,000 physicians for 20 years – have concluded that eating an egg a day is OK.

Read what dietitian and author Leslie Beck had to say about eggs in her nutrition segment on CTV’s Canada AM this week. Or, watch the clip on Leslie’s website – www.lesliebeck.com

Eggs fit into a healthy diet, providing high quality protein and a multitude of vitamins and minerals, not to mention great taste and quick and easy meal solutions.

For more information about egg nutrition, visit these sites:

* Egg Farmers of Ontario

* Canadian Egg Marketing Agency

* American Egg Board

* Dr. Donald McNamara’s blog – Unscrambling the Science