Tuesday, December 29, 2009

We're back from Montreal with beer, bagels and baked goods


"This is where the polar bears live?!" exclaimed Lauren.

Our new discovery in D.D.O. Abie's Smoked Meat and Steak.This is medium old fashion smoked meat. If you order lean, it will be a little dry. This was SO tender and juicy.

Nicholas' eyes almost popped out of his head when he saw this gigantic platter placed in front of him!

We made another pilgrimage to Montreal to celebrate Christmas with the family. All I know is that it is TOO BLOODY COLD in Montreal and when I got in the car today before gladly making the 6 hour drive back to Toronto from Montreal's South Shore, I just kept asking myself why anyone would want to live there! I've also made up my mind that we MUST be snowbirds since as I get older, this four season business is WAY overrated! As we were heading to the highway, my four-year-old asked, "This is where the polar bears live??!!" I REALLY wanted to say YES! but that would really confuse her. With all the drifting snow on this blustery cold winter day, it was after all -14 C (for those of you who are not on the metric system, that's a cool 6.8 F!). My husband says that those who have been brought up anywhere west of Quebec, are winter wimps! After all, the mayor did call the army in a few years ago to clear the snow off the streets. He says that in Montreal, the people would've be out there on the highway ready and armed with shovels!Fresh cut french fries. A little too sweet for my liking but still good!

When we go, it's a food/eat-fest. I feel like a stuffed turkey myself after all that I've eaten over these past couple of weeks. I just keep telling myself (yet again) that my new year's resolution is to lose 20 lbs. But this year is going to be different - I swear! When we arrived in the West Island of Montreal, we headed to Abie's Deli and Bakery for lunch. It was SO good. With my hubby's favourite Ben's gone, and Swartz's so out-of-the-way, we'd have to try this place since an article in Maclean's magazine said it was one of the best smoked meat joints in Montreal. Well, it was REALLY good. I think this is better than Ben's or Swartz's in my opinion, but why should my opinion count since I'm not a Montrealer nor an ex one? What do I know about smoked meat anyway? But if it does count, then I say it is VERY good! Their fresh cut fries were good (I thought they were a little too much on the sweet side) and the cheeseburger made Nicky's eyes pop (and tummy, too!). A fresh hamburger patty with tons of fries and fixings on the side. YUM!

For lunch, I had brought along my leftover Christmas roast beef and juicy turkey and we made a turkey soup. This is perfect since there were two turkey's a generous amount of meat was left on the bones. Perfect to make it a all-in-one meal. We got a few (brother-in-law actually bought 6 baguettes - enough to feel 15!) and we had a hearty soup and sandwich lunch. For dinner, we had Montreal style pizza. You have never had pizza til you've had pizza in Montreal. Di Giovanni's is probably my favourite place there, but after trying several take-out places after St. Bruno's Pizza burnt down, we found a keeper this time. I don't know the name of it though. The pizza is different in that when we order a pepperoni pizza, we might get a few little pepperonis here and there with a little layer of sauce and cheese. Montreal, you order a pepperoni pizza and they give you a nice artery clogging meal! The pepperoni AND cheese are both laid on thick! Now that's a pepperoni pizza if you ask me.

SOOOO GOOD! I almost died when I first had pizza like this from DiGiovanni's Pizza.
Montreal Pizza. The ball of dough is placed in the middle to prevent the boxes from collapsing onto the pie.

La Chocolataire Veux Boleoil.

We also took a walk in the old town of Boloeil. After visiting countless times, they must've finally found that I was worthy of seeing this place. The church my sis and bro in law got married in 20 years ago.

My sis-in-law eyeing the assortment of caramels. We came home with 4 small jars of caramels that are made by this chocolate store - plain, maple, white chocolate and hazelnut.
The church across the river is where my mother-in-law went to school at as a little girl.To-die-for chocolate truffles.

It is a beautiful spot where 20 years ago, my brother and sister in law got married, and across the river is where my mother in law used to go to church and school. The chocolate store made their own caramel and we had to bring a few flavours home to try. As of today, we still haven't had the chance to try any of them but when I do, I will post.

By the river in the town of Boleoil, Quebec.

Before heading home, as usual, we stopped in at Costco. You see, some items just aren't readily available to us in Ontario. For example, classic Montreal Bagels. These are SO yummy especially if you get them hot out of the woodburning oven in downtown Montreal at the Fairmount Bagel Bakery. Because we don't have the time to go downtown, we just get them from Costco (and it's a bit cheaper too). We also get my favourite dessert mille feuille.Yum! One of my favourite desserts - mille-feuille. Must go on hunt for some closer to home!
Authentic Montreal bagels are boiled and baked in a wood-burning oven.

I think I deserve a holiday after all the marathon cooking and eating that I've been doing. When we got home tonight, I actually grabbed a frozen turkey carcass from Christmas dinner and made a delicious soup again. My family aren't real soup lovers but they sure loved this simple soup. Next time I'll try to remember to not carve the turkey so close to the bone so my soup will have more meat.Ah, home sweet home...nice to be home again.

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