Archive for category Restaurants

Unambiguously Baked Baked Potato Soup

I squinted down at the bowlful of white glop in front of me then up at the waitress. I asked, “Where’s the cheese?”

“What cheese?”

“The cheese! The cheese! How can you have baked potato soup without cheese?”

She looked at me like I was nuts. “We don’t put cheese on our baked potatoes so why would we put it on our baked potato soup?”

Read the rest of this entry »

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Wake up to a Mediterranean Sandwich (Recipe from the Falcon Lake Deli)

I just saw a Subway billboard that read, “A great sub ahead of time! Now open at 7am.” I wondered, “Who wants a sub at 7am???”

Then I remembered the first Saturday I waited tables at my parents’ Falcon Lake Deli. They wanted me there at 9am. I didn’t have a clue why they needed a waitress in the morning when they didn’t even serve breakfast. Read the rest of this entry »

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Pepper Jack Soup from the Falcon Lake Deli

Soup-making is something that I just know how to do. Why? I grew up surrounded by soup-simmering and soup-eating.

Tomato Beef Barleys and Chicken Noodles warmed my childhood. Vegetarian Borscht Dappled with Heavy Cream appeared in the spring and returned to freshen Ukrainian Christmas Eve (a meatier version was ladled daily at the Perogy Patch). Mushroom with Wild Rice, Bean and Bacon, Hearty Potato Tomato, Pepper Jack and many other creations starred in Soup and Sandwich specials at the Falcon Deli.

And now, on my blog, Pepper Jack will also exemplify the simple brilliance of my mom’s recipes. Yay good soup! Yay awesome Mom! Read the rest of this entry »

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The Pittmans’ Restaurants

The following text appears on the cover of the Pittman’s on 44 menu. I wrote it a few years ago when my brother and his wife took over the restaurant from my parents. (Items in parentheses are my added comments and do not appear on their menu.)

Pittman’s

At the Perogy Patch and Deli: My Baba, My Mom, My Dad (he had just been in a car accident), a Kielbassa and Some Pyrisky Buns

On 44 is where it all began 20 years ago when Barry and Phyllis Pittman opened the Perogy Patch and Deli in Lockport on the corner of Highways 44 and 9. They began their family business making and serving the wholesome foods that Phyllis had been eating and helping to cook since childhood. After establishing the Perogy Patch and Deli, Barry and Phyllis opened the Perogy Patch Café on Main and St. John in Winnipeg. At that point, Barry decided to retire from his job as a Federal Meat Inspector and join in with the restaurant business full-time by taking over the Parkside Ford Cafeteria. (This cafeteria was later purchased and managed by my cousin Cheryl). Read the rest of this entry »

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Melty Brie with Garlic, Red Pepper and a Year in the Life of Pittman’s on 44

My brother Mike and his wife Angela (owners / operators of Pittman’s on 44) spend spring gearing up for summer. They plan new menu items and get the staff (mostly students) into shape before May Long hits.

From that weekend on it’s non-stop insanity. I know because I’ve had a spin in the whirlwind of a beach-town restaurant myself.

Cottagers, campers and road-trippers continuously trample the craggy shores of the Whiteshell Provincial Park until Labour Day Weekend. And then: Read the rest of this entry »

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Foodies in the Family

Gee Gee, my brother and I catching some shade on a prairie afternoon

My Gee Gee would pay us five cents for every potato bug in our pail.

He’d hose mud off of a carrot and off of us at the same time. Shrieking, we’d jump from the spray secretly hoping to get caught by refreshing coldness.

He’d hand us roughly cut rhubarb and send us to Baba knowing she’d sit us at the table where we’d dip scarlet tips into glasses of sugar.

His apple tree yielded so many golden spheres that every pair of pantyhose from Shoppers Drugmart was required to strain the juice.

He always had Rocket Candies in his pocket. He’d tell us, “One for you, two for me” (but only if we’d sing his favorite Ukrainian folk song first). Read the rest of this entry »

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