15 articles Articles posted in matchmaking

Food Matchmaking: French Fries Love Gravy

Yes, I know it’s still June, and we’re highlighting lavender this month. But it’s also Canada Day this Sunday and Fourth of July shortly after, and so I wanted to squeeze this post in before it’s too late. :)

I have very fond childhood memories of getting fries and gravy with my friends at the corner store across the street from my elementary school in Toronto. I remember that warm, thick, salty gravy covering those starchy fries. I have to say, it completely befuddles me why fries with gravy is not more popular this side (that would be south) of the border. A quick little search reveals it to be common in pockets around the country, like upstate New York and Baltimore. But for the most part it seems to be a foreign (and often unappealing) concept to many folks here, who, quite frankly, are missing out.

Disbelievers might point out that the gravy will turn the fries soggy at some point. This is true, but it’s the same idea as chili or melted cheese over fries. And I have to say I actually quite enjoy that gradual progression of gravy melding into the fries because it is good every step of the way. You start with the integrity of both crispy fries and hot gravy, and as you slowly work your way through the pile, the fries start getting soaked in gravy goodness, and finally, you end with your fingers covered in both potato and gravy, and that, my friends, may just be the best part of all.

Of course, fries and gravy are best known in the classic French-Canadian dish poutine, in which fresh, squeaky cheese curds are also an essential ingredient. In the United States, a version known as Disco fries with melted mozzarella is apparently served in New Jersey diners (I know it’s terribly un-Canadian, but I may just prefer the gooey melted cheese version of poutine over the cheese curds). Related are the gravy cheese fries served in some American diners.

Whichever you celebrate, I hope you have a wonderful Canada or Independence Day!

Photos from here and here.

Food Matchmaking: Lavender Loves Chicken

Lavender is usually paired with fruits and sweet confections, but have you ever tried it paired with savory foods? When I came across this roast chicken recipe, I was thrilled to discover that lavender is used as one of the herbs to flavor the chicken! It’s combined with thyme, rosemary, marjoram here in a mixture similar to the popular spice blend, Herbes de Provence. In fact, you can purchase Herbes de Provence with lavender here or you can make your own at home. Try it rubbed on chicken and lamb, or as a pork glaze!

Photos from here and here.

Food Matchmaking: Lavender Loves Peach

This might be one of my favorite lavender pairings ever. :) There’s a bakery in Arizona called The Wildflower Bread Company that makes the most delicious Georgia Peach smoothie with peaches, lavender, honey, and whipped cream. From the moment I took my first sip of that smoothie to this day, I have yet to find another smoothie pairing that delights my tastebuds the way this one did! I’m sad The Wildflower Bread Co. can’t be found in too many parts of the country, but whenever I visit AZ, you’ll be sure to find me getting my smoothie fix there. :) If you’re looking to find ways to taste this pairing at home, try this lavender peach tart!

Photos from here and here.

Food Matchmaking: Lavender Loves Coffee

I’m so excited for this month’s lavender matchmaking posts! Like my sister mentioned, lavender is one of my favorite colors and scents, so I love how versatile it can be in cooking, cleaning, and homemaking. I especially love finding ways to incorporate it in delicious sweet and savory foods.

The first time I came across this combination was at a gourmet cheese shop in San Francisco. I was intrigued by their new “Barely Buzzed” cheese that featured a lavender coffee-rubbed rind. I gave it a try and was pleasantly surprised by how well the fragrant coffee aroma blended with the subtle floral notes of lavender. I can imagine the coffee and lavender pairing well together not just rubbed on cheese, but in coffee drinks, desserts, or even as a body scrub!

Photos from here and here.