Too ‘Gut’ To Be True

World cup soccer drawn to a close, why not keep the winning momentum going?  Full of heart and national pride, celebrating all-things Deutschland is welcome and year-round at one particular destination – SCHNITZELand.

Conveniently located in Thornhill, Toronto, this corner eatery satisfies both dine-in/take-out patrons eager to champion a sought-after taste of Bavaria.  Specializing in Eastern European food, ‘overtime’ is graciously offered to leisurely review the abundant list of hearty selects.  Between traditional appetizers, dinners, desserts and – ‘ja’ – even lager, be prepared to keep your eyes on more than one prized option.  Offering plenty – in variety – the ongoing dilemma of indecision persists.  Which one to choose, schnitzel or spaetzle?Schnitzeland2 arr

Hungry for a taste of victory, questions are finally settled with the only feasible request – order’s up, for both!  Typically bread-coated, I forgo any crumbed masking and pleasantly sample Holstein Schnitzel – made, my way – in its purest form.  Appeasing to my palate, I am presented with a plate of simplicity – chicken schnitzel that is clean, lean, lightly seasoned, and sufficiently grilled to succulent perfection.  Reminiscent of Persian ‘shirazi’, this meal is also paired with a refreshing side of Israeli salad – cubed cucumber and tomatoes – and, served with a generous helping of crispy bacon-embedded saurkraut.  Already bright in taste, things look far more attractive – to a protein-lover – with a complement topping of one sunny-side egg and cured anchovies.  Notably, in this case, it doesn’t take a genius to concur that ‘e’ equates to – more than – ‘enough’ fare, fulfilling one’s hunger.

Über peckish, still?  Larger than life – spirited – friends, fear not!  If you can stomach more – delicious – but, have yet to reach your ‘wall’ and are left wanting more, this place doesn’t refer itself as “SCHNITZEL-and” for no reason.   Upon demand – and extra cost – you can easily “double-up” portions of ‘tenderized popularity’ or opt for additional plates of flavourful classics:  bratwust sausages, goulash, sweet or savoury perogies, and dumpling-like spaetzle laden with gravy.  Clearly dynamic, the heroic lineup of appetizing dishes are befitting of one Germanic ‘happy meal.’  Needless to say, anytime man engineers edible triumph – winning over appetites – well, ‘das gut!’

© DISHFUL, 2014.  All Rights Reserved.

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BMuffin 1 arrSplits, milkshakes or smoothies, summer indulgences share a common interest – B-A-N-A-N-A-S!  Surely, nature’s yellow encased fruit is a “go-to” favourite until ‘it’ happens– age spots.  While speckled brown jackets are telling signs of aging, soluble transformations await with a little elbow grease.  ‘Seemingly’ expired, what’s truly bananas is that some will dispose of perfectly usable – though slightly over-ripened – delicious fruit.

Bananas1 arrMy advice:  don’t judge neglected fruit by its – peel-ready – exterior.  Instead, Lady be cool and remain one smiling Chiquita by reviving bananas with a bake-over.  Still very sweet and flavourful, overly ripe bananas are especially ideal for the creation of baked goods – it’s fermentation gone right!

Tried, tested and true to taste, I use Martha Stewart’s reliable recipes for my very own potassium-rich baking session of banana bread and muffins.  To start, I adhere to outlined steps to yield basic results.  But, as with any ‘good’ and plain recipe, simple ingredients are simply too irresistible not to invite delectable additions. BCranberry Loaf arr

BTahini Loaf arrCater-made to personal preference, I maintain the rich integrity of banana bread by replacing traditional butter with alternative fats – tahini and even all natural peanut butter.   Intensely nutty, separate use of these ‘butters’ – in two distinct batches – works, and certainly amplifies the flavour profile of banana bread.  Batter once prepared and poured into a greased loaf pan, why not make things more sanely delicious?  Doing just that, I have tried unique pairings for added texture and taste.  Between dried cranberries and various toppings, my all-time favourite banana bread consists of chocolate chips, peanut butter and a generous sprinkling of shredded coconut.  Though quite strong, the not-so-visually-apparent sesame-infused batter mixed with dried pineapple chunks remains a close second.  Highly aromatic, there’s no doubt that bananas –revamped – makes for moist and crumbly fruit bread that’s not only worth saving but, equally devouring.  Essentially, the same loyally portable snack with the exception that it’s – now – proportionally sliced.

BMuffin Tray arrContinuing with an experimental sequel, take a humble banana muffin recipe then proceed to mix necessary ingredients – as per instructions – and get creative.  Gloriously treated, I make mine by adding sundae-like fixings such as chopped walnuts and dark chocolate chunks.  End result:  a kingly creation otherwise known as, “chunky monkey banana muffins.”  Plump and traced with chocolaty banana goodness, these individually wrapped treats are unquestionably satisfying from muffin top to bottom.  Needless to say, a tangible mouthful that’s – presumably – Elaine-approved!

© DISHFUL, 2014.  All Rights Reserved.