A Love Affair with Food
They say the older you get and the more experiences you have, the more your palate changes. That could ring true for me as my penchant for wanting new and different foods grew stronger as I aged. I became more willing to experiment. I wanted to try new meals, I wanted to taste new flavours and play around with different textures.
Now, I love food!
Someone once asked me to tell them about something that I truly enjoy and the first thing that came to mind was food. Nowadays, the patty I used to peel the layers off of, just to nibble around the edge, has since become a whole new experience. I enjoy the flakiness of the crust, the texture of the meat and how they both come together on my taste buds to create a flavour that is truly magical. Let me indulge by sharing a few of my favourite things and where I recommend you can get them.
1. Bruschetta – this is a pretty simple dish but it packs so much flavour and can be paired nicely with some crisp white wine. Bruschetta originated in 15th century Italy and is usually served as an appetiser. But I find that it can be a meal in and of itself if you eat enough. This typical starter is made with grilled or toasted bread, garlic, diced tomatoes, basil, olive oil and a little bit of salt. The tomatoes, garlic and basil are diced and lightly tossed together in the olive oil with salt then served on the bread. That’s it. You’re done! You can choose to add pepper flakes to your mixture and top the bruschetta with shredded or powdered Parmesan cheese, if you’re looking for extra flavour. I’ve been to a few places that serve good bruschetta, including Fromage Brasserie in Marketplace and The Wine Shop in Southdale Plaza.
2. Chicken wings – this has a story behind it. When I was younger, you could never get me to eat a chicken wing. I just thought they had no meat and served no purpose. That was until I had wings that changed my whole perception completely. A good chicken wing can be the most delicious thing you ever eat and I know that now! The last very good set of chicken wings I had showed themselves to me at a bar called The Black Sheep located in the borough of Manhattan in New York City. I underestimated these wings because I thought they couldn’t possibly be that spicy. I got 10 wings for $5.00 and trust me when I say, I could not finish them even though they were so good. I was humbled by the experience because it has been a while since I’ve had something so spicy that it gave pause while eating. Locally, there are some top-notch wing spots. Some places I recommend are Barbican Beach Bar, Blend Bar at Pegasus and Plushh Sports Bar in Portmore Pines Plaza.
3. Pizza – I feel like everybody loves pizza and if they don’t, they should! It’s almost always worth the calories. Commercially made pizza has its place but artisanal or handmade gourmet pizzas are amazing! The difference is in the crust. The handmade pizzas have thinner crusts (which means less calories) and the chef is able to knead the dough to the exact consistency he desires. Eateries like CPJ Market and Fromage Brasserie have both wowed me with their pizzas but the one I can’t seem to get my mind off is from La Pizzeria in Devon House. The chef is consistently creating the most perfect crust and the menu has a variety of topping options, some of which aren’t usually on pizza. My personal favourite is the bruschetta pizza (see how bruschetta came back?) but I also have a soft spot for the pepperoni because of how perfectly sliced it is and the ham because it’s so tender. If you’re not a meat eater, vegetarian options like arugula are there for you too!
There’s so much more I want to share with you, and this is just the beginning of our food journey together. Stay tuned to The Gleaner’s Food section for more updates on what I’m eating and where I eat it. When food is the question, the answer is always yes!