8.24.2016

CUCUMBER, GIN + CHARTREUSE COCKTAIL

Cucumber, Gin & Chartreuse Cocktail | Sevengrams #drinkthesummer

A few years back, I traveled to the French Alps to visit a dear friend. It was the first time I visited the French Mountains, and the first time I was spending any real time with her man. A few days in, post dinner, he took out a bottle of Chartreuse, a common after dinner drink in France. "Enjoy it straight, on ice," he said. I tried, I really did, but with its intense green colour, earthy tones and potent flavour, I knew I wasn't going to be able to drink it straight (sorry Matt). I returned home from that trip with my own bottle of Chartreuse, determined to develop a pallete for it. Three years later, I'm still working my way through the bottle, tucking it into cocktails whenever I can, and if I'm feeling bold, sipping on a small glass post dinner.

When I decided to join in on #drinkthesummer, I immediately knew my drink had to have chartreuse as the base. From there, I added some puréed summer cucumbers (they're looking so fine at the market right now), and some gin (because cucumber + gin, always). Then a little lime and simple syrup to round off the flavours.

Be sure to check out all the fabulous blogs taking part in this year's #drinkthesummer, and mega shout-out to Sherrie for organizing such a fun party!

BOOZY //

A Little Saffron | Beach Bum’s Rum
A Thought For Food | Tarragon Tequlia Swizzle
Heart of a Baker | Green Tea Mint Cooler
Hungry Girl por Vida | Whisky Peach Alexander
Hummingbird High | Watermelon + Mint Agua Fresca
Beard and Bonnet | Easy Melon Mojitos
Appeasing a Food Geek | Basil + Black Pepper Gin Sour
Vegetarian Ventures | Garden Tonic Punch
Domesticate ME! | Watermelon-Basil Mezcal Margarita
The Foodie Nurse | Husk Cherry Margarita
Wicked Spatula | Coconut Gin + Tonic
Nutritionist in the Kitch | Healthy Muddled Blackberry Piña Coladas
Chocolate + Marrow | Pequito Verdecito
The Solstice Table | Jalapeno Watermelon Cooler
Seasonal Cravings | Strawberry Lime Gin Rickey
Salted Plains | Frozen Honeydew Daiquiris
Fix Feast Flair | Ginger-Berry Splash Cocktail
Dessert for Two | Salty Melon Slush
The Wood and Spoon | Honey Basil Margaritas


NOT BOOZY //

Heartbeet Kitchen | Salty Watermelon Shrub Elixir
My Heart Beets | Spiced Pistachio Shake
rooting the sun | Strawberry Fennel Soda
The Modern Proper | Vanilla Plum Shrub
Gourmande in the Kitchen | Stone Fruit Thyme Shrub Soda
I am a Food Blog | Cherry Vanilla Sodas
Well and Full | Peach Bubble Tea
Pure Ella | Fresh Mint Tea


Cucumber, Gin & Chartreuse Cocktail | Sevengrams #drinkthesummer

Cucumber, Gin & Chartreuse Cocktail | Sevengrams #drinkthesummer

Cucumber, Gin & Chartreuse Cocktail | Sevengrams #drinkthesummer

8.04.2016

SUMMER PASTA WITH HEMP SEED + BASIL PESTO (V+GF)

Summer Pasta with Hemp Seed + Basil Pesto (V+GF) | Sevengrams

Between a wedding weekend away, a week of working in the Toronto office and a long weekend cottage getaway, it was beginning to feel like I'd been away from home for a while. When I stepped out onto our balcony on Tuesday morning and noticed the size of our basil plant, I knew right away that I'd been gone for too long. Summer getaways are fun and all, but sometimes, all I want is a home-cooked meal and a good night's sleep in my own bed.

My Italian girlfriends tell me that an abundance of basil always means pesto, so I took the overgrown plant as a sign. I invited my gluten-free, dairy-free sister over for dinner, and then set out to whip up a pesto that she'd eat -- void of dairy and packed with protein. I had a bag of Trader Joe's gluten free pasta that I picked up in Vermont a few weeks back, and swung by the market for some plump quebec tomatoes, and some perfectly sweet ontario peaches -- ideal summer pasta add-ins if you ask me.

Summer Pasta with Hemp Seed + Basil Pesto (V+GF) | Sevengrams

Summer Pasta with Hemp Seed + Basil Pesto (V+GF) | Sevengrams

Summer Pasta with Hemp Seed + Basil Pesto (V+GF) | Sevengrams

Summer Pasta with Hemp Seed + Basil Pesto (V+GF) | Sevengrams

7.11.2016

DAIRY-FREE FLUFFY "BUTTERMILK" PANCAKES

Dairy-free "buttermilk" pancakes | Sevengrams

My new laptop allows me to shut down for the night with webpage tabs still open. At first, I thought this was great - I could read things at a more leisurely pace and not worry I'd forget about a new post, or hot article.

But now, mid summer, when the last thing I want to do at the end of a work day is face my computer, I find myself struggling to keep up with all of my favourites, leaving 20+ tabs looming week after week. It sounds ridiculous to say that I feel stressed about having too many blogs to read, but that's how I feel. The blogger community is one that I feel very lucky to be apart of, and a huge part of that is reading, commenting, liking, and supporting one-another. I got through a handful of them this weekend, more coming up this week. Baby steps, right?

We celebrated 4 years yesterday, and though we had a celebratory dinner planned, breakfast needed to feel a little special too. These pancakes, doused in all the summer berries, just felt right.

Dairy-free "buttermilk" pancakes | Sevengrams

Dairy-free "buttermilk" pancakes | Sevengrams

Dairy-free "buttermilk" pancakes | Sevengrams

Dairy-free "buttermilk" pancakes | Sevengrams

6.29.2016

STRAWBERRY RHUBARB CRISP (GLUTEN FREE + DAIRY FREE)

Strawberry Rhubarb Crisp #glutenfree #dairyfree | Sevengrams

We spent the weekend up at the cottage and it was absolute bliss. We were outside practically the whole time, hanging en famille, boating, drinking and playing cornhole with friends.

When the whole family is up at the cottage, meals can often be a little challenging. Everyone has their preferences, and everyone has their dietary restrictions -- no dairy, no gluten, no cinnamon, no tomatoes. Breakfast is easy, everyone kind of does their own thing, depending on what time you wake up. Lunch comes together as a giant salad with a side of protein (for those who want it). Then there's dinner - always barbecued and always delicious. Finally, dessert. Often just fruit and dark chocolate, but not this weekend. This weekend, I was on dessert duty. Using what I could find in the kitchen, I tweaked my go-to crisp recipe it into something dairy and gluten free. Not sure if it was the country air, the last of the season's rhubarb, or the fun of being all together as a family for the weekend, but the crisp turned out better then I could have imagined. Do your best to swoop up some of the last of the rhubarb before it disappears; if not, no stress, bookmark this recipe for next year!

Strawberry Rhubarb Crisp #glutenfree #dairyfree | Sevengrams

Strawberry Rhubarb Crisp #glutenfree #dairyfree | Sevengrams

Strawberry Rhubarb Crisp #glutenfree #dairyfree | Sevengrams

Strawberry Rhubarb Crisp #glutenfree #dairyfree | Sevengrams

6.22.2016

VEGETARIAN VERMICELLI BOWLS

Vegetarian Vermicelli Bowls | Sevengrams

Summer has arrived in full force, and totally caught me off guard. I'm still hoarding rhubarb from the market, all the while its already late June (WHAT?!). This month has been filled with weekend visitors, al fresco dining and ice cream. Lots of ice cream. We're heading to the lake this weekend, which can only mean loads of sangria and all things barbecued. I can't wait.

To counter all this indulgence, I'm trying to keep weekday lunches and weeknight dinners light, healthy and packed with fresh produce. These vermicelli bowls are just that. They're the perfect balance between eating a bowl of raw veggies, and the comfort of rice noodles and warm baked tofu -- perfect for a working lunch, or a relaxing evening on the patio with a glass of vino.

Vegetarian Vermicelli Bowls | Sevengrams

Many thanks to Danesco for hunting down the OXO tabletop spiralizer and sending it my way. Danesco is a Montreal-based distributor of high-end kitchen ware, including all things OXO. If you're in Canada, this is definitely a resource you're going to want to know about!

Vegetarian Vermicelli Bowls | Sevengrams

Vegetarian Vermicelli Bowls | Sevengrams

Vegetarian Vermicelli Bowls | Sevengrams

6.05.2016

KENTUCKY MULES + A SOUTHERN-BBQ INSPIRED DINNER

Kentucky Mule | Sevengrams

I love any opportunity to host a good dinner party (as seen herehere and here), especially when there's a theme, and extra especially when its for a birthday.

We hosted 10 people on Friday night for an early birthday celebration. Being a work day, the menu had to be easy, and mainly 'make-ahead' dishes. Pulled pork seemed like a cost effective, delicious option, and from there, a southern-bbq theme emerged. Filled with festive plates from my new favourite store, a $10 bouquet diy-ed into center pieces, spicy collard greens and kickin' kentucky mules, the evening was a smashing success. We ate, we drank, we giggled. On repeat.

5.30.2016

ICELAND


If you've been following along for the travel part of this blog, you'll know that we love a good flight deal. So when WOW Air announced cheap direct flights from certain North American cities, it didn't take us very long to pull the trigger and book. With minimal vacation days left to take, we decided we'd rather go for a short amount of time, then not at all, so we piggy-backed an extra 2 days onto the May long weekend, packed our tiny carry-ons and set off for Iceland.

Our plan was to spend 2 nights in Vik, followed by 2 nights in Reykjavik, and see as much as we could without spending an excessive amount of time in the car. We landed in Keflavik super early (5am!), and though we were sleep deprived and totally confused as to what time of day it was, we hopped in our rental car and headed east.

The following four days were filled with some of the most spectacular landscapes and natural sites I've ever seen. We snuck behind waterfalls and got totally drenched; we walked along black sand beaches gazing up at the beauty of basalt columns; we fought over the last bite of blueberry skyr cake; we drove past lava fields, that looked more like giant pieces of ginger then hardened lava; we spent the better part of a day watching vibrant blue icebergs float out to sea; we relaxed in one of Iceland's oldest natural hot-pools, nestled at the base of snow capped mountains; we took in all the sites, and all the bites, on our afternoon in Reykjavik; we charmed some horses into letting us trespass in search of the "blue waterfall"; we lounged in a natural hot spring surrounded by steam and mini geysers; we tasted rye bread baked in a geothermal hole; and relaxed pre-flight at the ever enchanting blue lagoon.

It was pure magic.