Thursday, July 30, 2015

Knorr Sidekicks Chicken Fried Rice

2015-Jul-30 Knorr Sidekicks Chicken Fried Rice (front) When I cooked this packet of Knorr Sidekicks Chicken Fried Rice with the stovetop instructions of 1-3/4 cups water and simmered while COVERED, it came out looking like rice stew -- way more soup/stock than pictured. I recommend using less water if you want your rice more fluffy than wet.

Taste was predominantly like Knorr chicken stock -- slightly sweet, mostly salty, but not super-salty. Check your sodium content. Eat less of this a SIDE DISH, not your main rice dish.

That said, if allowed to sit, the rice and noodles will eventually absorb the rest of the water (without transforming into a mushy mound). At that point, maybe because you are getting less soup directly, it tastes less salty, and you can eat it standalone as a main.

The recommended 1 tablespoon of butter didn't do much for it, and you might be able to skip that. Definitely try the cooked rice first before stirring in butter. It may also be to keep everything from lumping together, though.

Final cooked portion is really good, and depending on your appetite can be anywhere from 2 meals to 4 light meals/accompaniments. This makes the current promotion at Superstore (just $1 per pack) a great deal.
2015-Jul-30 Knorr Sidekicks Chicken Fried Rice (rear)

Alligga Flaxseed Cooking Oil

The latest sample sent to me by SocialNature is Alligga Flaxseed Cooking Oil. Right now, you can get Alligga Flaxseed Cooking Oil at $3 off the store price with a coupon from SocialNature.

The information on the bottle and website basically touts it as a "do-it-all" healthy wonder-oil:
  • Sautéing (pan frying), stir frying, roasting, baking, topping, salad dressing, add/mix with food (condiment?), supplement.
  • It is Organic, non-GMO, Kosher, 100% Natural, and 100% Canadian.
  • The Alligga website also talks about the health benefits of Flaxeed Oil.
The taste was very surprising. Caveat: I have never tried flaxseed oil, and do not normally pursue buying special cooking oil for "health benefits".
When I tried it straight, or with a bit of bread as a dip, there was a BITTER aftertaste on the tongue. This, I assume, is the "great nutty flavour" they mention (more like "walnutty", I guess).

I also let my mom pan-fry a chicken thigh (with skin removed). She is old school and doesn't watch her oil use, so she just poured a couple of tablespoons of oil into her cast-iron frying pan. Chicken came out okay, but the bitterness was evident unless we more carefully drained the oil away.

I'll try it in baking another time, but for the moment, I would recommend you cautiously buy this if you are keen on preserving the flavour of your food.

If you are buying it for the health benefits, and if you don't consume a lot of oil straight (e.g., as a straight bread dip or flavour additive), then it should be fine. Otherwise, watch for the bitterness and address that somehow (use less, drain it away, add something to it?).
2015-Jul-30 Alligga Flaxseed Cooking Oil
2015-Jul-30 Alligga Flaxseed Cooking Oil nutrition info

Wednesday, July 29, 2015

The cat does NOT love you at Mimibuloveme

Click to add a blog post for Mimibuloveme on Zomato So the fat cute-ish cat with no neck that is their logo actually does NOT love you. According to our kawaii and sweet server (who was the only person running the show in the somewhat dilapidated shop out in the middle of nowhere yet close to Oakridge Mall), "bu" means "not". Mimi NOT love me. To rub it in, their free-wifi password is Mimi[not]loveyoutoo.

Are you feeling the love yet?

Also, their web presence is useless. Menu pictures on Mimibuloveme's Facebook site are outdated and it looks like no one has been there since August-2014. Their actual web page is also uselessly "under construction".

Customer service is A+. Server is attentive. I had no sooner sat in my seat when a glass of water slid onto the table right in front of me. Totally un-rushed service (although at the same time, it was 6pm and the place was dead dead dead).

The concept is like Chicco Coffee and Dessert Bar on Robson, except the parfaits are a bit cheaper and they are designed and presented much better.
  • You get a long metal spoon. Great for digging deep into your tall glass.
  • Ingredients are also somewhat better. All parfaits come with honey cake and puffed wheat for a mix of soft scoops and crunchy fun.
  • The best improvement over Chicco is the scoop of ice cream at the bottom: You can start slowly from the top and not ration so much ice cream because once the ice cream on the top is gone, you still have ice cream on the bottom to help you finish up the rest of what's in your cup.
  • They take credit cards.
This combination of factors made Mimibuloveme a much more enjoyable experience than Chicco.
I tried the Hedgehog ($7.50) and it was rather good, with a decent amount of ice cream, allowing you to get some ice cream with every scoop of what is in the rest of the parfait, including dark chocolate cake, honey cake, and crunchy bits (honey puffed wheat?).

If you prefer you can get your parfait on a waffle instead.