Lispian Random meanderings on whatever catches my fancy

Cooking and Baking
Baking Bonanza
Baking Bonanza

I was under the weather much of the period before Christmas, during Christmas and after Christmas. To add to my joy I seem to have come down with the flu, ruining the start of January and my return to the office where I get to do some wickedly cool work on data analytics. In all, […]

Dave’s Killer Bread
Dave's Killer Bread

As any regular reader will know by now, I love to bake. I’m not a big fan of cakes — or as Chef Faure said during a pastry course, “Gateaus. I’m sick of gateaus” :-). I prefer puff pastries, croissants, tarts, mille feuilles, breads, etc. They’re just so much more interesting to make — and […]

Pekazza’s! My latest culinary invention/adventure
Pekazza's! My latest culinary invention/adventure

I’m not sure if this happens to other folks but every-so-often I just get tired of eating the usual stuff we make. It’s not like there’s a small repertoire cooking-wise, but sometimes I just grow tired of what we have and we tend to opt for take out when we get into that situation. But […]

Useless Warranties
Useless Warranties

My KitchenAid lift stand mixer died a few weeks ago. Since it was out of warranty I figured I’d check online to see what the most likely problem was. The most common problem was a stripped gear, which I personally found to be rather an odd occurrence for a mixer that is supposed to be […]

Experimenting with Lahey’s No Knead Recipe
Experimenting with Lahey's No Knead Recipe

  I love baking. It’s wonderful to be able to bake something and then have others enjoy it. But sometimes it’s just a pain to do the usual breads I learned at Le Cordon Bleu and so I sometimes use Jim Lahey’s No Knead recipe to create a loaf with little fuss. Just mix the […]

Boulangerie II
Boulangerie II

  This has been a long time coming. I had hoped to get this up a few short days after taking the course at Le Cordon Bleu but work and life got in the way and before I knew it months had passed. They say better late than never. The course was offered the week […]

Red Fife and Loaves

My wife has had a persistent skin condition that no amount of attention by dermatologists seems to have helped. After reading Wheat Belly I wondered if the problem wasn’t modern wheat. In way of experimentation, and because our family loves bread so much, I decided to try to create a loaf with a heritage variety […]

Baking Adventures: Lemon Tart Cheesecake

Everyone has their own way of relaxing. Some fish, some golf, some play hockey and I, well, I bake. Recently I baked a cheesecake for friends. It seems to have gone over well. They want the recipe. I figure someone else might be interested in it as well, so here it is. It’s actually a […]

Boulangerie I: Days 3 and 4
Boulangerie I: Days 3 and 4

Continuing on with my latest culinary adventure, here’s Days 3 and 4. Day 3 Day 3 was to be quite the adventure. We were about to make another 3 loaves but also play with “dead dough” for decorative purposes. Those of us with little artistic skills were going to have a hard time. But I […]

Boulangerie I: Days 1 and 2
Boulangerie I: Days 1 and 2

This past week I decided to take another “staycation” and take the Boulangerie I course at Le Cordon Bleu here in Ottawa. Once again my good friend Alberto joined me and we spent the week, Monday to Thursday, at Le Cordon Bleu learning about and how to make bread! As I mentioned in the Viennoiserie […]

Newfie Baklava & Newfie Triangles

It’s Christmas time and to me that means friends, family and baking! And one of the things I love to bake is baklava. There are a lot of complicated baklava recipes, but I’ve made this one a few times and it’s awesome. And it’s fairly simple. I’m sure some are saying, “Why ‘Newfie’?”. Well, because […]

The Fattening of America
The Fattening of America

I recently finished The End of Overeating by Dr. David Kessler, former commissioner of the US Food and Drug Administration. It was primarily of interest to me because, like many people, I’ve struggled with weight gain. And following the so-called “Food Pyramid” has only exacerbated the condition. So it was eye opening to read Dr. […]


This past week I decided to take a short vacation. Instead of doing the usual thing and going someplace and vegging, I decided to take a course at Le Cordon Bleu here in Ottawa. I was fortunate enough that one of my best friends opted to take the course with me. And so he and […]

Double Yolked

I’ve been eating organic free range chicken eggs for a few years now. I find them tastier than the regular eggs. I also tend to buy extra-large eggs because, well, I’m in the “bigger is better” crowd when it comes to eggs :-). During my many many years of buying eggs I’ve occasionally come across […]

Julie & Julia

Just watched Julie & Julia today with the wife. Very good film. I quite enjoyed it. And though I’m not a fan of Meryl Streep I found her portrayal of Julia Child wonderful. The entire way the film wove Julia Child’s life in with Julie Powell’s was excellent. Well worth seeing. However, I’d love to […]

Culinary Delights: Turkish Figs

One of my favourite snacks is dry figs. Not fresh ones — I’m not a fan. But dry ones. And the best dry ones are out right now: Turkish. I’ve had figs from all over but the dried figs from Turkey — which are just in season now — are by far the best. Head […]

Best. Baking. Invention. Ever!

I love to bake but some pans make life difficult. The worst pan I’ve found is a Bundt pan. The cakes look wonderful when they release, but all too often they don’t and you try to get the cake out and you fail and it falls apart and all the hard work was for naught. […]

Awesome bakery

My wife and I took our son and his buddies to Long and McQuaid on Bank at Altavista yesterday. After they finished drooling over the guitars, amps, etc. we all headed over to the bakery in the same mall — I think it’s called the Lebanese Bakery, but no matter, it’s the only bakery in […]

Bread experiments

I’ve started experimenting with bread recipes again. What got me going was two books by Richard Bertinet: Crust and Dough. Both are amazing books complete with a DVD of Bertinet making dough for bread. Unlike how I was taught, Bertinet’s method does not use a lot of flour and instead makes the dough elastic through […]

February 2018
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