Monday, December 14, 2009

Patisserie Lebeau (Vancouver, BC)

Remember how I was on the hunt for a good waffle a while ago? That search led me to Damien's Belgian Waffles in Richmond. For waffles closer to town, however, Patisserie Lebeau offers both sweet and savoury waffles, as well as waffle-wiches!! (How else was I going to drag M out to try sweet waffles, not once, but twice, since Patisserie Lebeau is closed on Sundays??)

Situated near Granville Island and just a few doors down from a great cookbook store, Barbara Jo's Books, Patisserie Lebeau makes loads of sweet Liege waffles, waffles with savoury add ins mixed into the batter, and waffle-wiches with goodies stuffed inside a pair of waffles.

With all the options, M chose a savoury (of course!) chicken and brie wafflewich. The crisp waffle was a nice, sturdy package holding in a beautifully melted brie with poached chicken filling. There was a nice contrast between the oozy cheese and the crunchy waffle. By the way, M found his wafflewich much too tempting and took a bite out of it before I could get my camera out and take a photo. Oy.

As I'm the sweeter one in the couple, I opted for a peach and custard wafflewich. It wasn't too sweet, which was nice, and again, the crisp yet tender waffle held its own against the soft silky filling.

We also had a ham and cheese waffle, where the ingredients were cooked into the waffle batter - while it was nice, our top pick would have been the brie and chicken. We ordered another chicken and brie wafflewich after taking photos and demolished it shortly after!

Unfortunately, I didn't get to try their authentic Belgian waffles, but I have to leave options to try next time!

If Patisserie Lebeau is still too far for you to visit, you can purchase their Belgium waffles frozen in your local Capers, Stong's, Whole Foods, Nesters, or IGA. They are also available at The Gourmet Warehouse (on Hastings at Clark), on The Drive at Drive Organics, or Meinhardt's on South Granville.

Patisserie Lebeau
1728 West 2nd Ave
Vancouver BC
P: 604-731-3528

Patisserie Lebeau on Urbanspoon

Saturday, December 12, 2009

Bentei Sushi (Burnaby, BC)

Being that the last while has been stressful and that we've been pressed for time, we have been eating our fair share of take out.

Actually, on the occasion that we consumed the three following dishes, we'd just found out that MB had been in an accident and had returned from the hospital. Initially, we'd had reservations at a Thai restaurant, but found out on our way there that MB was at Royal Columbia. We immediately changed our course and made our way to RCH - by the time we spent some time visiting with the family and MBs M, we were starving. As my father would say, between the stress and the hunger, we "didn't feel human".

Instead of Thai, we opted for a homey Japanese meal. Bentei Sushi, tucked away in a small strip mall off of Lougheed Highway would have to do the trick.

If homey was what we wanted, we knew we'd order a katsudon. Breaded pork cutlet with sauteed onion topped steamed rice. An egg was cooked over top of the pork, and the sauteed onion provided a savoury-sweet sauce to mix in with the rice. I still maintain that the katsudon at Vanya is my hands-down favourite (hence us referring to Vanya as the "pork chop rice place").

By chance, we also ordered a chicken teriyaki, which came with a helping of yakisoba, and salad. At $6.45, it was good value and in terms of comfort food, it hit the spot as well.

We also ordered a dynamite roll. At $4 a roll, it was good value as well.

On a separate occasion, I had a dynamite combo to myself. I also added on one piece of inari since the combo was only $8.80. The fish was fresh, and having hotate (scallop) sushi included in a combo was great! I love scallops, so I've already already aded Bentei Sushi to my phone book for a quick meal on busy workdays.

In short, I think I've found my favourite little sushi spot. Its proximity to home and quality make it a good take out restaurant for busy times.

Bentei Sushi
5901 Broadway
Burnaby BC
P: 604-291-0080

Bentei Sushi (North Burnaby) on Urbanspoon

Thursday, December 10, 2009

Elite Bakery, and an Apology.

First off, I'd like to apologize for being MIA as of late. A close friend was in a car accident a couple weeks ago, and was in a drug-induced coma for a week. It was a trying time, but all his family and friends pulled together, comforted each other, and sent a lot of prayers and positive thoughts his way. He just got out of the hospital a couple days ago and is recovering at home.

I took so many photos of food in my absence that I exceeded my 4 gig SD card, so I *do* have some posts for this next while! I'm aiming to post all of the 2009 eats within I hope we're snowed in for a little bit, because there is a fair share of things to write about! ;)

Elite bakery is situated in South Burnaby on Rumble Street, just east of Royal Oak Avenue. On the outside, it looks dingey and old school, but apparently they do catering and do wholesale pastries and other baked goods for other food establishments!

After a harrowing commute from Richmond back home, I spied Elite bakery out of the corner of my eye, and decided to pay them a visit. It was a nice treat and from the moment you walk in the door, you're tempted by the wafts of sweet pastry and buttery goodness. I picked up three items: copenhagens, a mocha boat, and a Kranse Kage.

First up was the copenhagen. I devoured one on my way home happily, as it was made from two layers of puff pastry sandwiched together by an almond paste / butter mixture. The puff pastry was shatteringly crisp, while the almond paste / butter mixture was rich and decadant. Although I bought two and ate one on the way home, I wished that I'd paced myself, as I totally spoiled my appetite. It was very delicious, however, and if the crispness of the pastry was any indication of their other products, I'm sure that I now have to make another stop soon to pick up one of their magnificent looking apple strudels, or their Kringle!

The Kranse Kage is a pastry filled with an almond-meal mixture and drizzled with icing. Do not let its' appearance fool you, the Kranse Kage was actually the least sweet of the three items I picked up that day. There was a strong almond extract flavour, and although I am not a huge fan of almond extract, it would make a nice snack - not too sweet, good chewy texture, and if anything, as a former co-worker used to say, "Nuts are good for you, it contains nuts, so it cancels all the bad stuff out." heehee! Somethings just stick in your memory.

The mocha boat was a tart shell filled with a "light" coffee buttercream and a small strip of fruit (berry?) jelly and coated with chocolate. I say "light" buttercream as it is full-fat buttercream - silky, creamy, and rich, but light on the coffee flavour. It was my second favourite. I could only have a small portion at a time though, as I could almost feel my arteries harden a little. On the plus side, it reminded me of one of the pastries at Notte's Bon Ton. I'm sure I'll visit Elite Bakery again in the near future as I am not too fond of driving all the way out to the west side for a European pastry craving!

Elite Bakery
5238 Rumble Street
Burnaby BC
P: (604) 437-4121

Elite Bakery on Urbanspoon
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