How to make homemade butter

Last week, our friend Say invited us over. We came with empty stomachs because he subscribes to the theory, “go big, or go home”. A fully stocked fridge, several loaves of banana bread, bacon and MORE is what we expect and have come to love.  Italian was the theme this time. There was gourmet coffee, pasta with simple tomato sauce (also an interesting curry alfredo sauce), affogato, tiramisu, Italian waffles, G for Gelato…and bruschetta served on a baguette with homemade butter. I had to ask, “Say, you made butter?”

Mason Jar Whipping Cream Homemade Butter OurTorontoLife

Let’s get started!

Mason Jar filled with Whipping Cream Homemade Butter OurTorontoLife

Say Pouxai JudyeLee Cyrus Making Homemade Butter OurTorontoLifeAfter 15-20 minutes of shaking, you will hear a “POP!” and the butter will have separated from the buttermilk. You will see two distinct entities in the jar: butter and buttermilk.

Homemade Butter Homemade Buttermilk OurTorontoLifePour the buttermilk into another container, and you will be left with butter. It will be a soft, room-temperature butter. Mix in a bit of salt, and that will bring out the sweet and creamy flavours of the butter.

Serve it on bread, bake with it, smother it on corn on a cob, and/or whatever you do with butter! Just make sure to store it, and it can last for about a month or so (get rid of it when you see fuzzy mold).

Your turn, try it!


G for Gelato: Fall In Love with Your Food

WARNING This is a heavy post with lots of food pictures. You might just get hungry!

You’ve heard of the term, food tastes better when it’s made with love? It’s true. I think about the Chinese soups (“tong” in Cantonese) that my mom would carefully prepare, and boil with care. My family enjoyed those soups almost every day. They were full of goji berries, red dates, and other “healthy” things.

Contrast my mom’s soup to ours. When Cy and I hit T&T, we would buy the pre-packaged soup packages. I’m telling you, it’s not the same as my mom’s! It’s not as flavourful, and if I don’t get a second bowl of soup then I’m not crying a river.

Love makes food into a passionate affair that makes your mouth tingle, your cravings lusting after satisfaction, and it transforms your eating experience into a story that you will share with friends. This is our story of the passion that is behind the restaurant, G for Gelato.

Quattro Stagione G for Gelato-OurTorontoLifeCy and I had the pleasure of meeting someone with a passion for food, people, and marrying food with people. That someone is Shant Behesnilan who is professionally trained in frozen desserts (so cool, pun intended), and he runs G for Gelato on Jarvis Street in Toronto.

I have a back-door theory that the “G” in G for Gelato really stands for gastronomy. Trust me, this isn’t just a gelato place. Shant and his team craft pizza (voted as one of the top pies in the city – the Napoletana and Quattro Stagione that we tried were good especially with their house-made chili oil), pasta, soups, paninis, gourmet coffee, and gelato! Plus, they are licensed.

Italian Food in Toronto G for Gelato-OurTorontoLife

Look at the full deli selection.

Cyrus Mochaccino G for Gelato-OurTorontoLife

Cy really liked the mochaccino. It was almost like liquid dessert!

Shant Behesnilian G for Gelato-OurTorontoLife

This was my favourite part. I asked Shant if it was too late to try the gelato since I noticed that they were packing it up. He said, “it’s never too late to have gelato!” It gets better, he firmly believes picking a gelato flavour is like picking the perfect pair of shoes. You have to  try a lot of them before you make you final selection.

We started with the fresh sorbets:

mango, raspberry, blueberry, blood orange, kiwi, strawberry, passion fruit  chocolate banana, strawberry, lemon, dark chocolate, strawberry/pineapple, ricotta pear, and mixed berry.

Then, we moved into the rich gelatos:

coconut, ruffino (his version of Baskin Robbin’s Mocha Almond Fudge, his family ‘s favourite ice cream), peanut butter, oreo cookies & cream, chocolate & cherry, cheesecake, salted caramel, ferrero rocher, hazelnut, baileys, G signature, mint, pistachio, lavender vanilla, avocado, chocolate, ginger cocoa, and cappuccino.

Everything tasted as if you were biting into the food itself.

CYRUS’ FAVOURITES Hazelnut and Ferrero Rocher.
JUDY’S FAVOURITES Mango, Blood Orange, Lemon (even though I have a slight intolerance for it), Lavendar Vanilla, Salted Caramel, Mint, Pistachio, and Ginger Cocoa.

For more (and better) pictures of the gelato etc., check out Casey’s blog post.  We bumped into Casey and his wife Sarah – they dined there just before we did!

Shant Behesnilian Judy Lee Cyrus Yeung-OurTorontoLife

We had so much fun chatting and chilling with Shant. He was a good sport when it came to answering some of my silly questions:

Q: If you had to pick one, would you pick a really good pizza or a really good gelato?
Shant: Gelato. I would have gelato for breakfast, lunch and dinner. (Shant went on to tell us about a “pop tart” that he makes by sandwiching a scoop of gelato between sweet bread- then toasted for 30 seconds! YUM.)

Q: Favourite flavour of gelato?
Shant: Ferraro Rocher.

Q: Favourite pizza? 
Shant: Calabrese. When I was a kid, I would always eat sandwiches with spicy meat and cheese!

Q: Do you ever eat at Pizza Pizza?
A: Never.

Q: Do you ever eat at Dairy Queen?
A: It’s been awhile. I used to like the vanilla-dipped cone.

What’s not to like about this guy?! You can tell that his passion is in his food and work, and both Cy and I appreciated it. Not everyone in the business has that spark, and when they do – it’s special.

Try G for Gelato for yourself.

G for Gelato
75 Jarvis St
Toronto, ON M5C 2H2

PS. I don’t want to fake you out. As affiliate bloggers for Buytopia, we get to try deals that we are interested in, and “test” them out. We write about it, and we aren’t pressured to write things that don’t represent who we are and aren’t. In this case, it was a $7 for $14 Buytopia deal. Shant was kind to comp our entire meal and we were able to enjoy the food, his stories, knowledge and company – and that was priceless.

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