September 18, 2011

Chocolate Chip Cookies

What can I say? These cookies are my childhood.

These cookies were one of the first things I ever learned how to bake. My mother used to whip up the dough, measure out the chocolate chips, hand me a metal spoon, and let me mix them in. The best part of the whole process. There's nothing quite like pouring in handfuls of chocolate, slowly mixing them in, watching the buttery dough coat the chips so they start to shine. All the while the oven is warming your back and you just know that you are nine minutes away from the most important bit of all- the test cookie.

Sometimes a kid's gotta do, what a kid's gotta do.

September 16, 2011

Montreal: Hot Chocolate and Bakery Windows Pt. 2

Bringing my food tour of Montreal to a close, I will continue discussing the many delicious foods and attempt to move beyond Old Montreal. But first, let me share a quick pic I snapped while walking through the cobblestone streets.

Not much can compare to fresh french bread. The yeasty smell that fills the air when the oven is opened, the crunch when you bite down, the sweetness of the bread...

Perhaps chocolate. Perhaps.

Moving on... Let's talk hot chocolate-

The difference between American hot chocolate and Montreal is night and day.

While hot chocolate is traditionally made with cocoa powder in the USA, in Montreal they use melted chocolate. Stirring is often required to get to the near-solid layer of warm chocolate that rests on the bottom of the glass.

The drink pictured here was from a chain near the hotel, Java U. Looking at it makes me think of a chocolate milkshake, the way they served it in a tall glass and handed you a long handled spoon. It was the largest amount of hot chocolate I was served at one time and ironically the least chocolatey.

The other hot chocolates were in small coffee cups, including ones that looked better fit to hold an expresso shot. And they were more intense then the milkshake chocolate.

Let that sink in.

The molten chocolate to milk ratio can be overwhelming the first time you experience it.


Tiny cups of chocolatey goodness-

What could be better?

The best hot chocolate was from Cafe Myriade. We had to walk two miles from our hotel to get there, but it was worth it. And more importantly, we needed to work up an appetite. Cafe Myriade had a machine that mixed the molten chocolate as you watched. Intense. My companions had their cappuccino and pastries.

Check out the intricateness of the leaf design on the cappuccino. Gorgeous.

I drank my melted chocolate with milk and ate a chocolate croissant.

Sometimes mornings are stressful.

Sometimes not.

Later that day, while wandering the streets, we came across a beautiful cupcake window display.

Cupcakes in martini glasses, what could go wrong?

I think my favorite meal had to be fondue at Founduementale. Gorgeous bubbly cheese mixed with basil and garlic. Endless pieces of bread to dip. My only regret was that it was so large, I couldn't finish it. And sadly, they have not yet invented a way to sensibly take fondue leftovers with you. The meal was rounded off with a chocolate fondue served with bananas, apples, marshmallows and of course, strawberries, which we dipped to our hearts content.

And those are some of my favorite places to visit in Montreal.

If you feel cheated by the lack of chocolate and/or fondue based photographs from this post, or simply want to learn about more Montreal restaurants, check out how to get chocolate poisoning (or how not) in Montreal at The Personal Autopsy, a hysterical blog written by Brittany, the self proclaimed goddess of cats, squirrels and chocolate. Check her out!