Welcome and thanks for visiting, I am the Candy Coated Culinista!
My name is Deborah and I began baking in 2010 and have expanded my cooking from simple and basic dishes to include more exotic and interesting ones since then. Once I moved away from my parents I immediately felt the motivation to cook! Before then I did not cook anything fancy and my mother would always say “Why didn’t you cook when you were at home if you could cook like this?” and to that I would reply “I didn’t need to, I had you!”
When I was a kid getting home from school, waiting for my dad to arrive home from work, I would always make myself one of 2 things: Kraft Dinner Macaroni & Cheese (a quick and easy tried and true Canadian option for many a child chef) and Chef Boyardee (either ravioli or beef-a-roni). Anytime I feel nostalgic I grab a box or can of my childhood favorites and I just can’t do it. I ate soooo much of this as a kid, I have reached my limit. I’m only now starting to like homemade macaroni & cheese because I have put a healthier spin on it by adding broccoli, whole tomatoes, spices etc. I was also always great at breakfast foods like grilled cheese and, believe it or not, French toast!
I have been watching cooking and baking shows for much longer then I have been cooking and baking, something about them just makes me feel good inside. When nothing is on I will always find myself back on the Food Network just watching re-runs of shows while I’m working around the house. I have no true baking or cooking style, if I like it I will try it at least once. Usually if I don’t like it I will start putting my twist/spin on it until I find a way to enjoy it. A good example of this is couscous; I love it now, but I’m still working on a quinoa and a gnocchi recipe I can say I love. My Guinea Pigs are the usual suspects, my co-workers, friends and family. They are my sounding board and will help me to tinker around with recipes that could use that extra something.
My Philosophy is to use what you have; if a recipe calls for something you just can’t find in your area, is not in season or just costs too much you find a substitute that makes sense, or just tastes good! Food is fun and is meant to be creative that is how you make things yours and put your personal stamp on it. If I make one recipe but have some ingredients left over they make an appearance in all my future recipes in a minor or major role until they run out or have spoiled. I’m not one to waste food.
There’s a few things I don’t really care for, raw food is the biggest, i.e. sushi. It is a mental thing; I feel I need some bacteria cooked off or something.(funny enough now I am quite fond of sushi and have gotten over the rawness factor). I’m also not a fan of hot spicy foods. A little sure, but not spice that makes you sweat and lose all feeling in your tongue to the point you can’t distinguish any new tastes on your palate.
My ultimate baking goal is to make Macarons. Now this isn’t a typo, I find many people think I am talking about a macaroon, the American treat that is a coconut flaked covered sweet cake. I’m talking about the Parisian Macaron which is a meringue based confection made with egg white, sugar and almond flour. I love the colours of these treats, they’re so vibrant and the filling options are endless! I’m going on a quest across Toronto to taste the different offerings from all the assorted bakeries around the city. I have my “Macaron Bible” that I will be using; it was one of my first purchases, even though I know I am a long way away from making these. This book is very intimidating, and inspiring all at the same time. It even has a troubleshooting section at the back for “if your Macaron looks like this, this is what you’ve done wrong” That alone makes me think this is a challenge. But I like to look at this book once and a while and think of future “baker” me.
My blog will consist of a mix of my recipes and recipes from some of my favourite chefs that have inspired me to pursue the culinary arts more, and just some recipes I see in passing and think let’s see how this taste.
So that’s the story of me, the Candy Coated Culinista!
Please enjoy my blog and the recipes. I hope you become inspired as the many books, cooking shows and the grocery store trips has inspired me.