Salmon Season is Here!

We really feel so fortunate that we live in this wonderful area. Surrounded by mountains, trails, lakes and rivers. With the main river a 5 minute drive from our home, when it’s salmon season, we try to get out there. Right now the pinks are running, they aren’t the greatest for fresh eating, but they are great for smoking and using in recipes!

Right now we have salmon that is cured and going in to the smoker, and salmon that is in the curing process. As well, salmon our for some salmon chowder tomorrow. Thank goodness for Pinterest is all I can say!

I had to chuckle this morning at 6 am, walking to the river with my purple salmon rod, with my husband, son in law and their friend. I was the only woman out there, and I know I got some looks with my ‘girly’ rod. Well don’t discount that my rod looks girly and I am a female! Who was heating it up out there, and getting some of the non-catchers (men) talking, yup ME!!!

Here are a couple of our pics from our early morning adventure! Stay tuned for pics and recipes to follow! If you have a salmon recipe you would like me to try, please feel free to share!!!

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Getting our Brew On!

This mid June weather we are having is absolutely AMAZING! I had waited all week for Sunday Funday! I had my heart set on getting some yummy BC spot prawns, as it’s the time of year for them. As well, I know Papa Bird loves his craft beer, so it was a perfect opportunity to go and explore two more craft beer breweries in Vancouver and get my prawns.

Papa Bird has really developed a love for this stuff. Honestly, not being a beer drinker, I am trying really hard to like it. Today, I tried ‘sours’.Well, I must say, the sours I sampled weren’t all that bad. I could drink a glass of it I think! Why hadn’t I tried these last year when we went to Bend, Oregon on the Ale Trail tour. For beer lovers, I highly recommend this. Try to hit all the breweries on the map, get the ‘passport’ stamped, and than turn it in for your commemorative mug.

Today we went to the famous Parallel 49 brewery in Vancouver, as well R&B Brewing. The two of them had completely different feels, but were both awesome. I think it is the combination of the service, the energy, the environment, the swag and the beer. Swag=growlers, t-shirts, hats etc, (I could become addicted to collecting growlers!).

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We arrived early to Parallel 49, and it was wonderful to be the only ones in there, lots of samples, great information and great conversation with staff. The infused beer was different, but I kind of liked it, lime & sage!

Our second brewery stop, we honestly kind of stumbled upon. We parked the car, looked over and there it was! Again, we were the only ones there as it had just opened. Colby greeted us with an introduction and a handshake, he was so lovely, I just wanted to take him home with us! After trying a few samples Papa Bird decided on filling the growler with their Red Devil IPA it was time to hit the road for some Whiskey Hazelnut ice cream at Ernest Ice Cream, another MUST GO  to place!

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Some other breweries we have been to and recommend in the area are Old Abbey Ale, Postmark Brewery, Granville Island, Steel and Toad, Steamworks, Steel and Oak, Old Yale, and 33 Acres. We highly recommend all the listed ones, you will not be disappointed! We can’t pick a favourite as we enjoy all of them!

We had tentative camping plans for next weekend but are already discussing the desire to go back and find more beer!

Where are some of your favourite craft beer places? I would love to hear about it and what you recommend we visit!

Fresh Strawberry Heaven!

This time of year gets me very excited with all the wonderful berries that are coming in to season. I start researching well in advance as to what I can make that’s new with the local berries that are coming out.

Today was the first trip of 2015 to the strawberry patch! Today little bird and baby bird came with me to get some berries. After a recommendation, we decided to try a new berry patch, Krause Farms in Aldergrove. We arrived around 10 am, and the parking lot was nearly full, so of course a little panic set in, are there any berries left!?

Lucky for us there were!  Although it was somewhat picked over, we did manage to pick what we needed. IMG_7848IMG_7857

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Once I got home, it was time to make something yummy for dessert with the strawberries. I am always wanting to try new recipes, and I hit the jackpot on this one. I found this cute little blog that has everything on it that I love! Here is a link to her recipe for the Strawberry Pie. Of course it said you could use a store bought pie shell, but that is kind of against my baking religion! I resort to my old stand by recipe from Butter Baked Goods for a pie shell. Of course I use Rogers flour, I have to support where papa bird works!

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I must say, if you have fresh strawberries handy, try this recipe, it is delicious and simple. Papa bird who doesn’t like pies, really enjoyed it!!!

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If you have a favourite berry recipe, please share!!!

Country Folks go to the City!

I feel so lucky to be living in our little city in the country. We live amidst the mountains, with famous fishing rivers a 5 minute walk from our house, lakes so close and amazing agriculture all around us. Also one of the perks is living a short drive to the BIG city of Vancouver! For some it seems so far to drive and hour and a quarter, but for us, heck we would drive it for a pint of beer! Yes, we like adventures! So as often as possible, we head in to the city, the country folk load up and away we go!

Us girls like the pretty, girly things, the boys, they love craft beer! So we all compromise so we can get a little of both.

On Sunday we were minus one, as she had to work, and the rest of us packed in to Papa’s truck and away we went.

First stop was to take little bird to Butter Baked Goods as she had never been. This was my second time, and oh boy, it just made my heart smile to be there. The smell, the decor, the treats!!!! Even the bathroom was beautiful….I am a huge fan of this bakery nestled away on Nanaimo St in Vancouver. I own the first recipe book of their’s and am instant that everyone I know should own one copy. It was too difficult to order one treat, so I ate one there and purchased another to take home with me. My reasoning was I had to see if these two items were close to what I had made at home from their book. I must say, it did not disappoint!!! If you get the chance, go to this bakery and BUY the book!!! I have already pre-ordered the next one which will be released in October 2015 for me and my girls.

You can order the book here.

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After a stroll on Granville St and a visit to my favourite store, Elm St Market, it was time to head in to Gastown and to find a craft beer brewery. I knew the boys were wanting to try a new one, and we were not disappointed. After parking and an interesting walk thru a neighborhood, we arrived at Postmark Brewing. What I just love about visiting these craft breweries is that they are all so unique and different. From the outside looking in, one does not know what they are about to enter in to. This brewery was gorgeous and BUSY! The boys each ordered a sampler paddle of 4 different beers. The atmosphere was cozy and urbanesque, with quite the buzz inside. Here are a couple of pics, I would love to go back again.

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Once wrapped up at Postmark our tummies were a little hungry and Steamworks was not too far away. Gosh, we all like Steamworks, so lets go! There we had burgers, fish taco’s and drinks, me I had to have the sangria. Next time I go, I definitely need to order the fishbowl, it’s HUGE!

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We all had full tummies, and were starting to feel a little tired from the fresh air. I was determined to get some ice cream, hey, it was ‘treat day’. We had passed Soft Peaks Ice Cream and I needed to check it out. Here me and little bird decided to get dessert!

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That was our Sunday in the city! I am already planning next Saturday’s evenings adventure, back in to the city for Hawkers Market, I cannot wait! It’s being held downtown at Main Street’s train station, there will be good food and drinks along with entertainment! Who’s in!!??

What adventures have you been on lately, I would love to hear about them!

The New Adventure of Crabbing!

For quite a few years, I had been bringing up the topic of crabbing to my husband. I would occasionally say, I really really want to try crabbing! Heck how hard can it be!

After listening to me long enough, and actually getting assurance from the guys at work, he decided heck, lets try it! Since we are headed to Oregon this summer, Pacific City actually, where crabbing is popular, we better figure this out now. When we get there, it would be embarrassing to look like rookies.  The thrifty person I try to be, I posted on a local Facebook sway that I was ISO (in search of) a crab trap. Alas, someone responded with a  great trap for sale, that came with the buoy. After watching many Youtube videos and purchasing our online license, we felt we were ready.

We headed out to Belcarra Regional Park, which is about 1.5 hours from our place bright and early one Sunday morning, and dropped our line off the pier. The excitement that came when we pulled up our trap to find crabs!!

crabsAfter a full day of crabbing, we did go home empty handed with no crabs for dinner, those darn size rules they have, but we fully understand why they are in effect.

These rookies did learn a couple of things though for the next crabbing adventure. We learned that if you ferment your chicken, the more fragrant, the more the crabs love it. As well, the deeper you can get out in the water, the better. Well thank goodness for blow up boats, because this is what we were going to be bringing with us the next time!

One week later, the whole family joined us for a day in the rain of crabbing, thank goodness for the underground picnic area and two inflatable boats!

crab boatWith our two boats, a day of laughs, one crab to bring home, adventures as a friends crab trap was lost with their underwater camera attached, it wasn’t just about the lil crab, it was the time spent with the kids and their spouses!

crabStay tuned for the next adventure!