Author Archives: Monique Beaudin

About Monique Beaudin

I'm Monique Beaudin, an environment reporter and blogger at The Gazette. On Twitter, I'm @moniquebeaudin. Email me at mbeaudin@montrealgazette.com.

Vampires, beware

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I planted garlic for the first time last fall, and voilà, it is growing in our front yard!

And the rhubarb is coming along nicely too

!

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Pour me another tequila, Sheila

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Back before I had kids, this was what Friday night looked like.

With kids, I often wish I was spending my Friday nights doing that!

Instead, I spend it doing this: cleaning our playroom. This is how the disaster area looked Friday afternoon:

And this is how it looked an hour later, with some help from #3.

Maybe not as much fun as the tequila, but at least I wasn’t hungover Saturday morning.

Baking bread with Habs’ forward Max Pacioretty

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I was sick this week, with a head cold that made me sound like one of Marge Simpson’s chain-smoking sisters.

Stuck in the house, I decided to make some bread. Luckily, I had some help from Montreal Canadiens‘ forward Max Pacioretty. He was sick too: sick with shame from the way Montreal lost to the last-place in the NHL Eastern Conference Carolina Hurricanes at the Bell Centre in Montreal on Monday night.

We used the basic bread recipe from the Tassajara Bread Book. I love that cookbook. It takes 13 pages to explain in extreme detail how to bake the bread. Max read it quickly so he understood what to do.

While he explained how it was possible for Montreal to beat the Toronto Maple Leafs 5-0 on Saturday night, yet be humiliated by the Hurricanes two days later, I mixed and kneaded the dough.

Max was very impressed by how high the dough rose.

He was so anxious to eat the bread that he wanted to start before it had even been baked!

Max couldn’t believe that it still had to bake for another 30 minutes.

Finally, the bread is done. Max is 6 feet, 2 inches tall, yet this bread towers over him.

Nutella on homemade bread is just the thing a hockey player wants to eat on his day off. Max said he wants to bring a whole loaf of bread and a jar of Nutella to the locker room on Wednesday night to give the Habs the power to beat the Boston Bruins. I know you boys can do it Max!

Golden cake with chocolate icing

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Our local grocery store has recently begun carrying Betty Crocker Gluten-Free products. Having tried many, many, many gluten-free mixes over the past eight years and been very, very, very disappointed, I didn’t have very high hopes for this cake.

But Betty proved me wrong. This was a great cake, with just a handful of ingredients: rice flour, sugar, potato starch, leavening (baking soda,  sodium acid pyrophospate, monocalcium phospate), xantham gum and salt. You add eggs, water and butter (we used our old friend, Earth Balance margarine).20120208-193934.jpg

We made the icing with Earth Balance, cocoa, icing sugar and rice milk.

Mmmm, leftovers!

Hat knitting

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So our wonderful mother (Hi Mom!)  gave me a great birthday present when I turned 29 last year: two skeins of “Pure Sheep Wool” from Topsy Farms on Amherst Island in Ontario.

I had big plans for them, which promptly got forgotten when I started knitting Christmas presents for my family.

But a couple of weeks ago I decided I needed a new hat to get me through the next half of the winter.

Using this pattern from Knitty, I made this hat:

Sassy, no?