Not long ago, I was contacted by a representative for the PC Blue Menu line and asked if I would be interested in reviewing some of their products.
There are certain products with which I have had shameless love affairs; truffle oil is one and the President's Choice Chocolate chip cookies another. This cookie love affair has a long history, a bit longer than my marriage I might add. In fact, my infatuation dates back to the time when these cookies still wore their plain neon yellow no name wrapper.
But times changed and the plain yellow school uniform evolved into the Armani- esque President's Choice The Decadent Chocolate Chip packaging. Different suit but same love interest!
What does this have to do with my interest in the PC Blue Menu? I was very interested to try new products from Loblaws because they are constantly reinventing their offerings. Healthy and organic are two qualities which piqued my interest, but the bottom line would be how my family liked the food.
PC Organics European Extra Dark Chocolate
This is not technically part of the Blue Menu but chocolate is one of the favourite food groups in this house and we have our priorities....
There is nothing left but the wrapper from this chocolate bar (little snicker) and we would have licked the wrapper too if any chocolate sauce were smeared onto it! With 85% cocoa solids this is an over powering strong chocolate, too strong to eat straight up. But, the smoothness of the bar made the possibilities for this chocolate endless. It was the perfect candidate to make a decadent chocolate cream sauce which everyone loved.
Chocolate Orange Cream
100 g PC extra dark 85% chocolate, broken into bits
75 mL white sugar
250 mL heavy/whipping cream (unwhipped)
grated zest of one orange
Heat cream and orange zest over medium low heat until a slight skin forms and shimmers on the surface. Remove from heat and add sugar. Whisk until sugar is fully dissolved. If the sugar is not fully dissolved, place pan back on the heat momentarily. Remove once the sugar is dissolved and before adding the chocolate.
Add chocolate pieces and stir. The chocolate will begin to melt and the chocolate will appear curdled at the beginning. Don't despair! Keep stirring and it will become smooth.
This chocolate sauce is deliciously thick when warm and gorgeously spreadable when cold. For real sweet tooths, add more sugar.
PC Blue Menu Soybeans
The soybeans were a natural fit with my blog and I realised that, even though we eat beans quite a few different ways, there are no bean recipes on the blog.... there are no caviar recipes either but I digress...
In our house, fast food is a banana, eggs or canned beans. One of my favourite ways of eating beans is cold, with a drizzle of truffle oil and a squeeze of lemon. We love chick peas and kidney beans served this way. The test of these beans, was to try them in the same manner. They turned out to be a perfect plate for the salad since they had a smooth creamy texture.
1 can soybeans
one small grated zucchini
one medium grated carrot
wedge of lemon
Open can of beans and pour into a colander. Rinse with cold running water. Let them drain. Place beans in small bowl. Drizzle with truffle oil, squeeze lemon and sprinkle sea salt over top. Put on top of bed of grated carrot and zucchini.
Interestingly, my husband preferred to drizzle the PC Omega Oil over his salad. But for me, the combination of beans and truffle oil can't be beat. However, we have been using the Omega Oil for dressing our salads and everyone has enjoyed it.
If I were to add two things to Blue Menu products, the first would be labelling that indicates whether or not an allergen is an ingredient in the natural flavour or colour. In our case, not everyone in our family can eat wheat. Therefore, we have to clearly know whether or not gluten is an ingredient; an ambiguous label is one that I tend to forgo in the grocery store. To the credit of the help line, they were incredibly courteous in answering questions and the few products we questioned did not contain gluten.
The second addition would be to add a box (or several) of the PC Decadent Chocolate Chip cookies to the sample. Er, it has nothing to do with the Blue Menu but everything to do with an ongoing illicit affair that I'm hiding from the celiacs in the family.