August 29, 2016

Cooking Made Easy with Chef's Plate!

This post was sponsored by Chef's Plate. Thank you for your support for the company's that make this hobby of mine possible. As always, all opinions and reviews expressed are my own. At the bottom of the post is a promo code for A Slice of Brie readers!

The other week, I finally got to try out Canada's new meal-delivery service, Chef's Plate. When I first caught wind that such a service was available in Canada, I knew immediately it was something I wanted to try. Fresh, locally sourced ingredients, delivered right to your door ready for you to cook up? Sign me up!
Chef's Plate Meal Delivery Service Review
Chef's Plate utilizes the freshest ingredients while sourcing and building relationships with local farmers in order to provide high quality and truly special meals. Because the exact amount of ingredients are sent to you to prepare your meal, waste is eliminated, and all ingredients are arrive fresher than you would find at the grocery store, and all meats are hormone and antibiotic free. A true foodie's dream all wrapped up in a refrigerated box that is sent right to your front door!
Chef's Plate Meal Delivery Service Review
Every week, a new menu is available to choose from on the Chef's Plate website, and you can choose from the 2-person plan, or the family plan. Each meal option gives you a description of the recipe, the ingredients you will be sent, as well as the difficulty level and the amount of time the recipe should take you to cook. 

I decided to choose meals that utilized ingredients that I don't normally cook with. I love to cook, and I especially love trying new recipes, but sometimes buying a whole bunch of ingredients just to try something new is costly, wasteful and overwhelming. Chef's Plate solves that dilemma for you since you are only sent exactly what you need. The only things you are already required to have on hand are cooking oils and salt and pepper. So with that in mind, I chose the Glazed Turkey Tenderloin with black and white quinoa, baby greens, and pomegranate molasses. For our second meal, I went with the Singapore Shrimp toasted in a sesame curry sauce with bell pepper and rice noodles.
Chef's Plate Meal Delivery Service Review
Once I placed my order, I was given a delivery date, and while the delivery time is quite open, you are able to attach specific instructions as needed. I made note that my box could be left on my front porch if I was not home to receive it, and it was. Since the box is refrigerated, it is safe for it to sit out for several hours. The other great thing about the box is all the packaging is completely recyclable, making for a truly waste free experience. 

The first night, I made the Glazed Turkey Tenderloin. I have never cooked turkey tenderloin before, but after that meal, I can tell you it won't be my last. This meal was so delicious that I still think about if from time to time. No leftovers were to be found and even my toddler enjoyed some of it (although I really didn't want to have to share!). 
Chef's Plate Meal Delivery Service Review
Chef's Plate Meal Delivery Service Review
Chef's Plate Meal Delivery Service Review
Chef's Plate Meal Delivery Service Review
On our second night, I cooked up the Singapore Shrimp. I've never cooked glass noodles before, and I don't think I would have ever had the courage to do so before this. This meal also turned out great and was a big hit with all of us! Even though it was a meal for two, it fed all three of us and we even had leftovers for the next day. This recipe was a lot of fun because it was something different than I normally cook and felt like a meal we would usually only ever order out. 
Chef's Plate Meal Delivery Service Review
Chef's Plate Meal Delivery Service Review
Chef's Plate Meal Delivery Service Review
Chef's Plate Meal Delivery Service Review
Even though I cook frequently and try new recipes all the time, I still really appreciate step-by-step instructions. Along with your ingredients, you are also sent a photo of the meal you will be making which includes the ingredients, number of servings, difficulty level, prep time and nutritional break-down. On the back of the card there are step by step instructions including pictures. I loved this! I am such a visual person when it comes to cooking and this just made the whole process stress-free. The recipes even had a "chef's tip" at the bottom which I found very helpful too. And the neat part is, I can now replicate these recipes at home any time I wish since I have the instructions.

Overall, I was so impressed with Chef's Plate. It was incredibly easy to order my meals, I was more than satisfied with the quality and freshness of the ingredients, and my meals actually turned out just like they look on the cards. I think it's so fantastic that a service like this is finally available in Canada. The average cost per person per meal is around $10-12 dollars, which, when you think about the cost of eating out, is very reasonable. I know I cannot take my family out to a restaurant for dinner for less than $30, and so often I leave disappointed. If you already love to cook, or if you are someone who wants to cook more often and aren't as brave in the kitchen, then this is a great option for you! I love that the guess work was taken out of it for me: how tiring is the old question "what should we have for dinner tonight"?! I think this is a fun way to make meal planning a little more exciting and easier. Or a great idea for a stay-in date night. Or even a thoughtful gift for someone! Really, I can't see anyone not enjoying this service.

Have I convinced you to want to try this yet?! Honestly, this will not be the last time I order from Chef's Plate. Luckily for you, if you too want to try them out, you can use code #ASLICEOFBRIE to receive 3 free plate credits (that's a savings of $33!) . I promise, you won't be disappointed!

Chef's Plate Meal Delivery Service Review
{my sous chef!}

Have you ever used a meal delivery service?

August 26, 2016

Sully Says Vol. II

It's been five months since I did my first Sully Says post and I can't get over how much his speech and vocabulary has changed! He is no longer saying just words or short sentences. He talks non-stop all day long, asks tons of questions and is actually quite bossy (he comes by it honestly though!).
Here's some of my favourite things he's been saying lately:

Sully: What you got mama?!
Me: It’s cinnamon! 
Sully: OH! Cinnamon!
Me: Here, smell it!
Sully: “Mmm I LUB cinnamon!"

Whenever I offer him a bite of my food:
Me: Here, try a bite of this.
Sully: No sanks! I can't yike that!

Dat's SPICY! After insisting he wanted a lemon slice.

Me: Did you poop?
Sully: No!
Me: Are you lying?
Sully: No, I'm Su-yee! (Sully)

Me: What's in mama's belly?
Sully: A baby's in mama's belly! I see it?!
Me: No, you can't see it yet.
Sully: IT'S GONE!

It's so windy! On my head! I need go inside!
Looking at a bull at the livestock exhibit at the Stampede:
Sully: Look! It's a sheep...or maybe a pig.

Climbing at the park:
Sully: Be careful honey, be careful.

Take this off! It hurts my boobies! Referring to his car seat straps.

When he should be sleeping:
GOODNIGHT! I LUB YOU! GO TO BED! and repeat over and over.

Turn the fan off mama! Turn it off! When we were driving with the sunroof open.

One weekend we drove to the mountains and told Sully we would have a picnic when we got there. I laid out our snacks on a picnic table and Sully just sat there with a huge look of disappointment on his face and says: I want a pig-nic! Where's the pig-nic?!

Oh no! It's raining out! Da TUNDER IS COMING! Big tunder, mama, a big one!

Me: Did you have a good nap?
Sully: Yup! But I can't sleep no more. I not tired now. 

August 25, 2016

Walk A Mile in Their Shoes

Walk a mile in their shoes. We all know this famous quote (or some near version of it), and I would bet money that we've all made reference to it in some context or another. I know I sure have. Sometimes I say it jokingly, and sometimes I'm more serious about it. But what I'm not sure about is, have I ever really, truly experienced it?

Let's back up and allow me tell you a story. The other day, I booked my vehicle in to get something minor fixed on it, but it was something that required the dealership to have my car all day. Our dealership is located within walking distance to a big mall and a train station so I figured no big deal, I would drop the vehicle off and treat Sully to a train ride home.

Of course, the day of my appointment, it was so windy, a bit rainy and quite cold out. Murphy's Law. But off we went, dressing appropriately for the weather. After we dropped the vehicle off, we headed over to the mall to get smoothies (I had a 2 for 1 coupon burning a hole in my pocket). This required walking around and behind the dealership to get to the overpass in order to cross over the busy road. Walking over the bridge in the extreme wind was terrifying to say the least.

Anyway, after roaming around the mall for an hour, I figured it was time to head home for lunch and naps. This again required us navigating over a different overpass to get to the train station. Once there, I followed where I thought the handicap signs were leading me, which was up another steep ramp. Here, I purchased my train ticket and then I realized that there was no way for me to access the train deck which was below us. I either had to go back down the ramp or use the stairs or escalator (not happening since I had a stroller with me). But I was so confused, because I didn't understand how going back down the ramp would get me to the train deck since the signs lead me up it in the first place! Luckily, right away this young guy saw me and offered to help carry my stroller down the stairs (thank you nice, young guy!!). Then he showed me that to access the train, it was actually at the far end of the track on the other side. Sigh. I can't stand poor signage.
After a quick train ride, we then had to hop on a bus to get the rest of the way home. The bus ride is short, but it always sits at the bus stop outside the train station for ten minutes before it takes off again. Thankfully, Sully thinks trains and buses are the most fun thing ever, so he wasn't complaining.

Eventually, we made it home, just in time for an epic meltdown most likely related to being hungry and over tired.


After a quick lunch and an hour and a half nap, it was time to do it all over again. That's right, we bundled back up, searched the house for twenty minutes for enough bus fare, headed to the bus stop, took the bus to the train station, ran for the train just missing it by ten seconds, then waited 10 minutes for the next one, took the train to the station where I thankfully now knew how to exit the platform safely, walked over the overpass to the mall parking lot, walked through the parking lot and then over the second overpass that led us to the backside of the dealership, arriving 5 minutes before they closed. All in all, this took us about an hour from door to door.

Anyway, the point of this post isn't to complain. Or whine. Or anything like that. The point of it is this: after spending the day utilizing public transportation I have a newfound respect for mother's (and father's) and caregivers with small children who have to rely on public transport every single day. Especially in a more suburban environment, where the public transit, while efficient in some ways, is also inconvenient at times.  I truly don't know how they do it.

So yes, I do feel like I "walked a mile in their shoes" the other day. Both figuratively and literally. And I know this quote is more directed toward not judging other's, but I still think the saying applies. I love days like this one described above because it reminds me to not take what I have for granted. It's so easy to go day to day not really appreciating all that I have, or how easy my life might be in comparison to someone else. The reminder was well-timed and welcomed. I never want to take my life for granted and forget to be thankful for what I have. And I'm not trying to sound superior here because I don't have to rely on something like public transportation in my day to day life (my husband does though). I'm just reflecting and acknowledging that while I always see people waiting for the bus and trains with young children, I guess I never really truly knew all that that entailed. And if you happen to be on a public bus or train, and a child is having a melt-down or crying, take a moment and appreciate what that mother, father, or caregiver is trying to accomplish that day instead of judging them for having a "mis-behaved" child. We never really know what is going on in someone else's life.

When's the last time you "walked a mile" in someone else's shoes?