An Affair to Remember Blog

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“Spreading love, one recipe at a time!”

The back-story that inspired the menu that inspired the recipes! Foodie and Love stories combining love, romance, and adventure (remember this is all fiction my friends)! Let me take my paintbrush, paint the scene and the mood to take you there…

Inspired Quote to love by: “No woman can love a weak man hard enough to make him strong.” Pearl Cleage

Love Dateline: Meet Prince Hans of ‘Frozen-fame’

Where: A Kingdom

When: A long time ago

Mood: Happy Lady (Princess)

Emotion: Joy

The Inspiration Behind the Menu

This story…nothing more to be said…you’ll see.

Take I

It’s a tale as old and as frozen as time itself: girl (Princess) meets boy (Prince) of her dreams; boy sweeps her off her feet (second time around…long story) and they become romantically involved. He’s noble, he’s brave, he’s courageous, he’s charming, he’s dashing and he’s honest. Sounds perfect…they live happily ever after…the end! Nope, not so fast!

Two Princesses. Two Kingdoms.

Prince Hans has not one, but two Princesses in two kingdoms separated by an ocean. Oops. If this happens to you, try your best not to fall completely for his charm and words of love (you might save yourself some pain and you can be true to yourself)!   He convinced one of the Princesses that she was his one, his only true love. He was going to ride his big white steed across the ocean to be with her and leave his other kingdom behind.

Words Are Mightier Than The Sword.

You would have believed Prince Hans too…wouldn’t you have?? Be honest. Who doesn’t want to believe that true love and fairy tales really do exist in real life and not just high up on the silver-screen. His words were oh so convincing…let me share some with you:

My Dear Princess,

“It is wonderful that you are not only still in one of my kingdoms, but that you care as I care for you. My princely dreams and wishes have come true.

 My princess, I love every minute of my time in the kingdom with you. When my steed and I are with you, my heart and soul smile. When I am with you there is not another kingdom in the world that I would rather be in.

 I have put you up on a pedestal; I bow to you my princess. After all of this time, you still have my heart. My love for you knows no bounds, it is deeper than the ocean that separates us. You are the love of my life.

xxx PH” 

Now you understand? OK, good, you get the picture, Prince Hans had the gift of the written word, the gift of the Princely gab.

Believable, convincing, credible, truthful. She thought so…she believed in his words, his truth. She believed that his words were mightier than the sword. She thought that they were meant to be together, riding off into the sunset, as happy fairy tales always end. We all know that.

Restaurant of Eden.

I should mention that Prince Hans loved to travel the world as much as she did. Wanderlust was something they both shared –  a strong desire to wander and explore the world. This allowed them to savour fabulous food and wine from the goblets of the globe. Prince Hans and his Princess dined at ‘Restaurant of Eden’ locations far and wide (hmmm, must have been a chain).  They travelled into the sunset, exploring paradise and taking bites of temptation:

The city of romance – Montreal

The city of history – London

The city of dust – Vientiane

The city of silence – Hanoi

The city of tears – Hong Kong

The city of surprise – Toronto

They both took bites of each dish knowing that the dishes were oh, so bad for them, yet they tasted oh, so good at the same time (something like Adam and Eve’s first bite of forbidden fruit and giving in to temptation). He convinced her over each and every of these very dishes (on this very Menu) that she was indeed ‘the one’ – she believed in him for a long, long time. She fell for him ‘hook, line and sinker,’ drawn to him like a moth to flame, believing in the good and the honesty of Princes and people far and wide. He had her so convinced that he was a noble Prince of his word…you know the kind, a ‘real man’ of his word (yes, I know that you’re thinking, they’re about as rare as dragons, but she was a believer that they truly did exist). I’m sure that any Princess would have believed the same of her Prince and held out hope – these Dishes of hope that they shared inspired this Menu of hope. Good luck to those who follow in this Princess’s footsteps in their glass slippers. Trust your instinct, follow your heart and hope that your Prince is as courageous and honest as he says he is. The ending is sure to be a happy ending if he is an honest Prince of his word, true love always prevails, it just has to if it’s true.

Above all, love yourself and who you are first, and then the answers will become very, very crystal clear – as clear as glass in fact. Yes, the very same glass of your slippers…don’t leave one behind. Be love, follow your heart.


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PS Love your food, what comes from the heart touches the heart! Craving isn’t a ‘Bad Word,’ food IS sexy!

PSS I came up with this handy wallet-sized ‘Manly Ranking Scale’ – pull it out when you need it! It’s similar to the Richter Magnitude Scale that measures earthquakes (the idea came to me as I survived a major earthquake in Vegas years ago). I’ll grade each man of my life at the time of my Love Dateline story! Feel free to grade the man of your life, If he’s a +10 (and I hope he is), I’d say go for it!:


2-Manly rating card-2

Prince Hans was very convincing; there was a 50/50 chance of living life happily ever after which is what the Princess truly hoped and wished for.

Check out the complete “An Affair to Remember” menu


Where: Everywhere

When: Anytime

Mood: Hungry & adventurous

Emotion:  Joy

Four short foodie stories that tell the tale of how the menu and recipe collection came to be – collect one, collect ‘em all (kidding)!

The BEST Asian Deep-fried Spring Rolls, Com Viet Restaurant, Hanoi Vietnam

I travelled all the way to Hanoi to find ‘the’ best spring rolls that I’ve ever tasted in the whole wide world! Yep, I’ll go to great lengths to find delicious recipes for you won’t I – you’re so welcome. Com Viet Restaurant is to me – a hidden jewel in the heart of Hanoi – a temple of the senses so to speak. Wow, what an experience it was sitting in this restaurant of Old World charm surrounded by deep dark wooden décor, fine Vietnamese antiques and music floating through the airwaves from a traditional harp. Where was I? I felt as though I was transported to another place and time and oh the food (don’t get me started)! The food was absolutely delicious, I particularly LOVED the spring rolls, they were crisp, hot, the filling fresh and flavourful (the dipping sauce had a nice zing to it). I loved every bite that I took, I couldn’t stop at one spring roll (I’m sure you couldn’t have either)! It was a delicious start to my meal, I was a happy lady with this dining experience. If you go to Hanoi, definitely check out this restaurant – it’s a worthwhile foodie pilgrimage – believe me – you’ll be transported somewhere else in time (and so will your taste buds)!

Warm Soft Pretzels with Cheese Mustard Dipping Sauce, Guys Cooking Class, Mount Pleasant, 2011

I first introduced these pretzels during my men’s Super Bowl Appetizers cooking class. The 46th annual edition of the Super Bowl in American football was coming right up, so it seemed apropos to teach Big Game Party Recipes to the guys! They loved the pretzels, so warm, so soft and almost drank the dipping sauce (yes, it’s that good, easy to make and oh yeah, it has beer in it)! Your man will love these pretzels for sure, try them!

Frozen Grapes of Wrath, DISH Cooking Studio, Toronto, 2006

What a simple, yet decadent dessert – a sorbet without the work! Why not?! I was first introduced to this very simple, yet effective dish when I worked as a kitchen assistant at dish’s Cooking Studio in Toronto. I never, ever forgot this recipe (I keep recipes in my mind as an inventor would store ideas) and now it’s finally my chance to share it with you and your man! I went the extra mile and fine-tuned the recipe for you (as a Gourmet Coach would do of course)…don’t thank me, just taste it!

Authentic Nachos, Eagle Pass Texas, 1943 (nope I wasn’t alive yet)

I’ve always LOVED nachos, they are my all-time favourite perfect pub food. So simple. So delicious. So monumental. So had to be included in this menu! Nachos are not actually a traditional Mexican food (as many think). They originated in the United States in Eagle Pass, Texas. Invented by Ignacio “Nacho” Anaya as tortilla chips with melted cheese and jalapenos. That said, the dish has been given a truly “Mexican” makeover at many of the places that serve it south and north of the border. Using traditional salsas, or guacamole, Mexican cheeses, and freshly made chips is the absolute best way to make “authentic Mexican” nachos for your next fiesta (or hot date with your Prince). Back in 1943, who knew that this appetizer would have made Ignacio’s nickname a household word and you’d be serving nachos to your Prince!  Enjoy, food nourishes your soul.

Wish you were here!


Jackie's 'signature'_Briar Rose