A Hello, A Goodbye

My author copies of A Real Newfoundland Scoff arrived the week before last, and I was thrilled to at last have the book in my hands; this, my most personal project. That joy was shredded by the loss of Fleur, our black Newf. She became ill the day the books arrived, and we said goodbye to her a week later. It was unexpected and heartbreaking–I had just written an Ode to a Newfoundland Dog in April and we could not have known we’d be mourning our beloved girl such a short time later.
Fleur had a voice in this blog, during our cross country trip, and she had the loudest voice at home.
She loved life, and was the light in our house and hearts. Our older boy, Jack, is the stoic, dignified, gentle giant and Fleur was his counterpoint.
And here she is, on the back of my book, wondering just when the picture taking would be over because she had Important Dog Things To Do Thank You Very Much. IMG_3859
It’s fitting that Fleur would somehow end up on a cookbook cover, because if ever a dog loved dinner, it was our girl.
And as we move through our grief, comforted by the empathy and sympathy of family and friends, relying on the resiliency of the human spirit, we know there’s a time to refocus on the living.
That includes finding some excitement in this book, and so I’m sharing a little sneak peek with you.
It’s a beautiful sunny day outside, with just enough of a breeze to make walking comfortable, so I’m heading out with our boy Jack for a stroll. We’ll chat soon!

Sunday Small Bites

A weekly roundup of tasty tidbits for your entertainment!

CBC featured this bit on Newfoundland’s Tiniest Pub–and nope, it’s not on George Street.

If you want to tickle your brain cells instead of your taste buds, there are great food-related quizzes over at Sporcle. Everything from Shakespeare’s Kitchen Quiz to Food in Song Lyrics to Foods That Are Red. Go have a look, but take a snack, you might be there awhile.

And the drink of the day, compliments of Marylou Hoffman Zimmerman. Marylou is a Facebook friend of mine who adores all things food, and has Newfoundland dogs that sniff out truffles for her in the spring, which I think is pretty amazing.
Elderflower Sipper: St. Germaine, homemade rose water, vodka, hibiscus lavender syrup and club soda make up her version of this summer sparkly cocktail.

Speaking of drinks, looks like disaster will be averted, as HuffPo reports there may not be a shortage of Prosecco after all!
This sparkling Italian wine is my go-to for special occasion toasting and by happy accident, we were served Kir Royales made with prosecco on Saturday night (how’s that for a segue?)

After our drinks, we sat down this wonderful supper made by a hostess claiming to have simple tastes.
Every bite was perfect, and I can’t recall enjoying a dinner so much in a very long time. Of course, that may also have had a lot to do with the company. I’ve said it before, I’ll say it again–it doesn’t matter so much what’s on the table as who’s around it. In this case, it was the best of both!

Sunday Small Bites

A weekly roundup of tasty tidbits for your eatertainment!

In both the Glass Half Full and When Life Gives You Lemons categories:

After an especially long and arduous East Coast winter, my sister-in-law refuses to let a little of the leftover white stuff spoil a sunny day. Relaxing on her cabin deck in Birchy, Newfoundland, she uses the pristine snow as ice for her gin and tonic. Cheers Denise!

Ladies & Gentlemen, the “Swineapple“:

Pineapple, stuffed with pork ribs and wrapped in bacon–c’mon on, you know you want to try it! I know I will, and I’ll let you know how it goes.

And if you think the pressure’s on cooking for mere mortals, imagine cooking for royalty! Even anti-monarchists should find this behind the scenes account of a former royal chef interesting: A Palace Chef here!

Finally, this guy proves that not everyone is taking food too seriously. He’s ranked the 27 best Pop-Tart flavours–who knew there were that many? Now I want one…

A Cup of Tea


I love my nightly cup of tea, and it seems fitting to finish out National Poetry Writing Month with the same ritual I finish my day with. I can’t talk about tea without mention of Halifax’s Phil “Tea” Holmans. The proprietor of the World Tea House, Phil has a passion for tea that is unparalleled, and has just returned from travelling through Sri Lanka and India on his continuing tea journey. Find him on Facebook here.

Thank you all for reading along!

Water bubbles to a rolling boil
Pour slowly over leaves in pot
Steeping, familiar fragrance
filling air, filling cup
cradled in both hands
Warmth seeping through
Liquid love
with each


When Mom made homemade bread, as many Newfoundlanders did, there was always a bit of leftover dough that would be rolled into little buns and fried in butter. These tasty treats are called toutons, tiffens, or damper dogs, depending on what part of the province you’re from.

Touton Haiku

pillowy soft bun
outwardly browned, split sideways
slathered in butter

Mon Dieu! Fondue!

Inspiration for tonight’s verse comes from what’s on tv: Stage 1 of cycling’s Tour de Romandie. The Tour de Romandie is a six-stage race, passing through the French-speaking cantons of Switzerland, a country not exactly lacking in food culture. Cheese and chocolate, it’s all about the cheese and chocolate. I could go on for days about chocolate, so in the interest of limiting the babble (too late right?) it’s gonna be cheese–fondue, to be exact.

Mon Dieu! Fondue
Quivering fondue forks, laden with
Rustic peasant bread cubes sit poised
On the ceramic pot rim
Emmenthaler, Gruyere
Bubble, enticing.
Hurry up, and
take the