Is that even a word?


Hey guys! I've got a lot of fun stuff I'm dying to talk about here on the blog (so many recipes especially!) but the reality is I'm just too busy at the moment with work and various other things to give this old girl the attention she deserves. I hope to be back from my self-imposed blog sabbatical (blogbbatical?) once late Spring hits. Just in time for warm weather recipes, warm weather fashion and fun things to do around Toronto in the, you guessed it, warm weather. Stay tuned! In the meantime, don't forget that I'm all over social media. Let's connect on Instagram, Facebook, Twitter and Pinterest. Love you, mean it!

A nice way to start the week...


Jazz.FM91 has announced their Top 10 Canadian Jazz releases for 2015

I'm thrilled to see two projects that I contributed photography to (Oscar, With Love and Movin' Forward) ranked at #1 and #2, respectively.
Congratulations to Kelly Peterson / Oscar Peterson Music and Robi Botos on this honour. It is certainly well deserved!

I'm currently working on updating my studio website with a new look for 2016, so stay tuned for news on that! :)

Recipe: Lenny's Louisiana Hot Sauce


I used to be very vanilla when it came to spice in my food. Mild, baby. It had to be M - I - L - D. Somewhere along the way, due to a combination of age, the expansion of my palette and all the time we spend in New Orleans I developed a serious hot sauce habit. It brings me so much pleasure. The initial kick, the way it heightens the other flavours, the weird buzz you get minutes after eating it. It's the best.

This year I decided to try and make my own homemade hot sauce for some Christmas Gifts for friends and family. I like giving gifts from my kitchen and considering all the sweets we all get this time of year, I thought I'd go in the other direction and bring the spice!

Never having made my own hot sauce before I perused Pinterest for recipes. There are so many ways you can go with hot sauce. Some really complex layered flavours. I was surprised to see one recipe that included carrots! None of them were really what I was after; I didn't have time to ferment anything and the flavour I was hoping to achieve was something really simple, with heavy vinegar overtones. There's this hot sauce you find in New Orleans called Crystal, it costs less than a dollar for a little bottle of it and the flavours are simple and bright...basically just Cayenne Peppers and Vinegar, it's pretty mild too, which is a good thing if you're giving it as a gift.

This non-recipe-recipe from The New York Times sounded like it would fit the bill perfectly. Here it is with my modifications:

What you'll need:

Cayenne Peppers (about a dozen, maybe more)
White Vinegar


1) Wash and trim the peppers (leave in the seeds)
2) Put into food processor or blender
3) Submerge Peppers in Vinegar
4) Add about 1 tbsp of Salt
5) Blend until smooth
6) Transfer the sauce to a pot and bring to a boil, stirring frequently (avoid getting the fumes in your eyes because...ouch)
7) Let sauce cool in pot
8) Run cooled sauce through a sieve 
9) Funnel into bottles and refrigerate 

Keep refrigerated, shake before use and expect it to last a month or so.

The good news? This tastes JUST like Crystal.

I created this label for it, to make it look more official :)

Lenny was very happy to have her name right there on the label. Ever the entrepreneur she thinks we should open a shop to sell the stuff. Or, at least see if we can sell it at a Farmer's Market. I fully expect this child to have 3 or 4 functioning businesses by the time she's 10 years old.

Let me know if you try this recipe, or if you have a go-to hot sauce recipe that you'd like to share!

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