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Ontario, Canada
I am a wife, mother and grandma who enjoys the many aspects of homemaking. A variety of interests and hobbies combined with travel keep me active. They reflect the importance of family, friends, home and good food.
Cook ingredients that you are used to cooking by other techniques, such as fish, chicken, or hamburgers. In other words be comfortable with the ingredients you are using.
--Bobby Flay

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Tuesday, November 22, 2011

Weekend Food and Kitchen Finds

I love this time of year when various community groups and schools host bake and craft sales.  The stores put a variety of small kitchen appliances and equipment on sale with gift giving in mind.  Old fashioned ribbon and satin candies, nuts in the shells, and fruit cakes become available.  The stores carry a larger variety of baking supplies because they know many folks do a lot of baking over the holiday season.  Interesting and festive serving ware become available and then there are the food events.  So far, we have tickets to a community Christmas concert (cabaret style aka wine and cheese), a yellow perch fish fry, a dinner cruise, and two dinner concerts!

Paderno EcoPan Platinum
Home Hardware is a Canadian owned hardware chain.  It is one of my favourite places to shop because we know the owners and staff.  Shopping there supports the local economy.  They have a Paderno sale each year offering rather amazing deals on Paderno products.  Paderno is a Canadian company specializing in making and distributing high quality stainless steel cookware, utensils and housewares.  We stopped at Home Hardware on Saturday to check out the sale.  I absolutely love the quality of their nylon kitchen accessories so I picked up another set (reg. $34.99, sale $19.99) for our vacation home.  We bought the Paderno steak knives (reg. $49.99, sale $19.99) with 25 year warranty.  The steak knives are precision ground with serrated blades that will stand up to years of use.  What I really like about these knives is the one piece ergonomic design that eliminates any cracks or crevices for food and bacteria to accumulate.

I am not a fan on coated non-stick bakeware or cookware but for some foods non-stick is the best solution.  I became fed up with the non-stick coating flaking off even though my non-stick is always hand washed and I don't use metal in them.  Teflon non-stick coating has a few health concerns due to off gasing at higher temperatures so a couple of years ago I bought two  Baker's & Chefs fry pans from Sam's Club.  These are commercial grade fry pans with the Eclipse reinforced non-stick coating but the coating still has PTFF (polytetrafluoroethylene) that off gases at higher temperatures or if the coating has been compromised.  This has always been a concern for me because fumes from Teflon have killed birds (warning on Dupont's website) and I prefer to use products that do not reduce air quality in our home.  Studies have shown that C8 particles are in the blood of those who use Teflon non-stick.  This is not a naturally occuring chemical so what damage C8 does in the body is still questionable. 

I just bought two of the Paderno EcoPan Platinum fry pans - 10" (reg $129.99, sale $34.99) and 12" (reg. $149.99, sale $39.99).  These are eco-friendly fry pans with a 100% ceramic, non-stick coating that is six times stronger than traditional non-stick coatings.  The coating is completely free of PFOA (polytetrafluoroethylene aka C8) and PTFF so there is no concern over off gasing or C8 particles getting into your body making these pans the healthier choice in non-stick coatings.  The pans can be used on ceramic, gas or electic stovetops and in the oven to 450ºF.

We also stopped at a community group sponsored craft and bake sale.  There were six of those delicious butter tarts but I was lucky to even get one for the photo.  This truly Canadian desert makes an appearance at every bake sale!  Butter tarts are delicious.  Be sure to use a homemade pastry crust though.  That is a French Canadian sugar pie.  There was only one booth selling them so I bought one even though the crust was not homemade. The tea came from a booth set up by a new gourmet spice, coffee and tea shop that recently opened in our area.  I'll have to go check the shop out.  I bought Sleepy Me, a caffeine free loose tea blend of valerian root, anise seed, fennel seed, caraway seed, rosehip, peppermint, passion flower, lemon balm leaf and calendula petal.  It is a lovely, soothing tea!  The light blue packet is a fisherman's chowder mix from Victorian Epicure Inc., a gourmet Canadian company from North Saanich, British Columbia.  I have not seen their products before so bought a packet to try as well as picked up their newest catalogue.  Their products are sold mainly through home parties.  I may be interested in hosting a couple of these parties since food is involved.  The Sicilian Herb dip mix is from a booth selling Wind & Willow gourmet cheeseball, soups, dips and salsa mixes.  The dip sounded interesting so if we like the overall flavour I'll tinker to create a clone recipe from scratch.

I hope you enjoyed seeing a few of our weekend food and kitchen finds.  I bought a few items from the new bulk food store too.  It isn't a Bulk Barn and the slection is limited but overall it isn't too bad.  Saturday night we entertained for 18 plus ourselves so there was a lot of good food going out including moose meat chili, baked nachos with beef and cheese, homemade peanut butter cookies and several snacks.  Sunday was a lovely, laid back SOMA day watching football (hubby) and playing the 'villes on Facebook (me).  I made nacho and jerked pork with cheese nacho tray for a snack followed by roasted pork shoulder, baked potatoes and maple baked beans for dinner.  All in all it was a grand foodie weekend!


3 food lovers commented:

Anonymous said...

Do the Paderno non stick pans have to be used with non metal utensils? I didn't see them in our local HH and we need a new one. I would rather not get teflon, so need to make a preemtive purchase so DH doesn't get another teflon. I'll ask HH to get one from another store maybe. I'll be making butter tarts soon too. They are just soooo good. Have never had the sugar pie.

Garden Gnome said...

Hi Anonymous and thanks for visiting. While the ceramic coating is considerably stronger than Teflon, Paderno recommends using non-metal utensils. I would think the ceramic would be more resistant to scratching though in the event a metal utensil was used. We've used one of the pans already. It is nicer than Teflon!

Anonymous said...

Thanks! It does seem like a metal utensil gets used at least once where it shouldn't - usually the first time a teflon pan is used. I'll check Home Hardware tomorrow.