Nik Snacks

Bite it and write it. That's what I do. Fueled by butterbeans & collard greens.

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This Southern Onion Comfort Food post is a part of a paid promotion with the National Onion Association. I was compensated for this post, but all photos, words and opinions are my mine.

Kimchi is one of those things I have never pictured myself making.

Kimchi is one of those things that I really don't care for in restaurants. 
Kimchi is ALSO one of those things that is more technique than recipe. You can mix, match and substitute ingredients and use trial and error to produce a pretty stellar recipe.

After doing a little research, I realized have dabbled in the art of fermentation based on the basics of the sweet sriracha butter I made to slather on ham-stuffed biscuits. And since I am a Southern lady and this is the Southern Onion Comfort Food Series, I had to come through and make this Korean side dish and condiment with a little twang as well. 


Essentially, kimchi is made from salted and fermented vegetables. A paste or sauce is made from a variety of spices, a little fruit, a little miso and a little time. Cabbage kimchi is the most popular, bu it can be made out of ANYTHING. According to Food52, 'kimchi' is a term that encompasses a whole genre of food—like "sandwich." Along with the sweet onion, I added carrots (for color and crunch) and okra (for Southern authenticity). My kimchi "sandwich" is a taco piled with pulled pork, crispy wonton strips and diced jalapenos. It's a whole mood, y'all.

The onions are sliced thinly, julienne style and it's the easiest way to cut an onion. Just follow the lines in the onion with your knife. But to get some live action shots of an onion being cut, please visit National Onion Association's site to see it in all its allium glory.


Sweet Onion Kimchi
Yield: 1 32 oz jar 

Ingredients Course salt
2 lbs Sweet onions (Vidalia, White or Sweet onion varieties are acceptable)
Carrots (peeled, shredded and/or sliced)
Fresh whole okra pods
Miso paste (red or yellow)
Dried shrimp
Korean chili flakes (gochugaru)
2 apples or pears
10-20 cloves of garlic, peeled
Fresh ginger root, peeled 

1. Create a single layer of julienne strips of onion, carrots and okra into a large container. 


2. Sprinkle vegetables with coarse salt and repeat until you’ve layered in and salted all of your vegetables. Use enough to remove some moisture and clean the vegetables. Let the salted vegetables sit for 3 to 4 hours at room temperature.


3. In a food processor of blender, add apples and a couple of tablespoons of miso, 
fresh ginger, about the size of two thumbs and 10 or more peeled garlic cloves. Process. Add a little bit of water if the mixture is too pasty (1 Tablespoon at a time). When finished, your mixture should be about the consistency of applesauce. 


4. Add 1 or 2 cups of gochugaru. Let the kimchi sauce sit and marinate for at least 30 minutes, or up to 4 hours—the longer the better—at room temperature.


5. Rinse the salted vegetables to remove the excess salt and pat dry. In an additional container, jar or other vessel, layer vegetables in the bottom and then cover generously with the sauce. Mix, stir or use your hands to gently massage the sauce into the vegetables, if need be. Rubber gloves will be handy here.

Repeat until you’ve used up all of your marinade. Cover the jar’s opening with a layer of plastic wrap (it helps to contain the odor) and place the lid tightly on top.

6. Leave your kimchi outside of the refrigerator overnight to kickstart fermentation. And then transfer to your refrigerator. 


Pro tip: After a few days, flip the jar upside-down and to distribute the goodness; just make sure the lid is secured tightly to prevent kimchi juice from spilling. Flip back to right-side up a day or two later. 

Some people believe kimchi never goes bad, but if you taste it and there’s an unpleasant “fizz,” you might want to skip that part. 

I think this is probably a good time to tell you that making tacos is easy and if you need some guidance, feel free to look here:

Spicy Marinated Steak Tacos
Curried Fish Tacos
Mushroom, Shallot & Wilted Arugula Tacos
Walking Tacos



Sweet Onion Kimchi Tacos with Pulled Pork
Ingredients
  • 2 cups leftover smoked pulled pork
  • 8 flour or corn tortillas, 2 per person
Suggested toppings:
  • Sweet Onion Kimchi
  • Diced tomatoes 
  • Sliced avocado
  • BBQ sauce
  • Crème fraîche or sour cream
  • Cilantro
  • Sliced scallions
Instructions
  1. Warm up your leftover pulled pork in a skillet. If dry add some water or apple cider vinegar to help re-hydrate (about 1 tablespoon at a time).
  2. Heat up your tortillas. Brush the tortillas with olive oil, drape them over the side of a baking dish, bake at 350°F for 5 minutes
  3. Load the tortilla with as much pulled pork and other toppings as you can possibly fit into it. Squeeze some fresh lemon or lime over the top. Enjoy!


On 10:39 AM by Nikki @ NikSnacks in , , ,    No comments
This Southern Onion Comfort Food post is a part of a paid promotion with the National Onion Association. I was compensated for this post, but all photos, words and opinions are my mine.


There's nothing like a Friday night fish fry with a big ol' table full of whole fried fish, crab legs, scallops, oysters, pinto beans, cole slaw, macaroni and cheese, collard greens... need I go on? And a baskets of piping hot hushpuppies.



The National Onion Association takes pride in educating consumers about the multiple benefits of onions and promoting onions for their member growers. They are a resource for everyone who has ever encountered an onion. If you want to learn some cool, fun, unique facts about onions and where to find them, visit the website. While you get educated about onions, I'm going to educate you about these hushpuppies...


Calabash-style seafood is lightly breaded and fried and typically served buffet style.  The seafood is always accompanied by hushpuppies. Typically, cornmeal is used instead of flour to give the seafood a light coating.  The seafood is then fried in hot oil until it becomes golden brown. And crispy. And delicious.

Calabash, North Carolina is where this style of seafood originated. Calabash has been known for its distinctive style of fried seafood since the 1940s, which has come to be known as "Calabash Style."

Calabash-style buffets are common in many eastern Carolina coastal towns. As a kid, we'd vacation down in Myrtle Beach, South Carolina and we'd see restaurant after restaurant named "Calabash #10" or "Calabash #8" indicating the number of restaurants in succession in the area. These restaurants are literally a dime a dozen and #1 Is just as good as #38 (usually). For more information and where Calabash got it's name, click HERE.

For *my* hushpuppies, not only do I use cornmeal, I use stone-ground grits and self-rising flour to give the pups a boost in flavor, texture and optimum fluffyness in between the bits of tender diced onion. Any frying oil will do, but I have used vegetable oil, shortening and overall I prefer peanut oil to fry up these little guys.

A little late-night snack of hushpuppies

Hushpuppies are small, deep fried morsels of cornmeal batter that are served with tartar sauce, ketchup or honey butter.

honey butter in the ramekin on the left; ketchup in the ramekin on the right; not pictured: tartar sauce, which I don't care for with my hushpuppies

I spent over 30 years of my life, eating hushpuppies as part of our weekly fish night dinner. Typically, they're made with yellow or white cornmeal, but the addition of grits gives texture and bite to an otherwise unremarkable piece of fried dough. Some put sugar in the batter. I don't. Sugar caramelizes and makes the puppies dark and too sweet. If you feel compelled to add a little sweetness, I won't judge. I promise.



My favorite part of the crispy, piping hot hushpuppy is always the little treat of diced onion inside. A dash of onion powder or garlic powder amps up the onion flavor. Chopped white onion is the best onion for the task of hiding inside these fried delights. Whenever I order hushpuppies at restaurants and they DO NOT have onion, I'm disappointed. It really is the best part.

Calabash Fish Fry Hushpuppies
Yield: 14-16 hushpuppies

INGREDIENTS

1/2 cup grits
1/2 cup yellow cornmeal
1/2 cup self-rising flour
2 eggs
1/2 cup milk
1 cup white onion, diced
1/4 tsp course sea salt
Shortening or peanut oil for deepfat frying

1. In a bowl combine the grits, flour and 1/4 teaspoon sea salt. Add the egg, milk and diced onion to the grits and flour. Stir together just until moist.

2. Heat the shortening or oil until it is hot and shimmering (375°F is ideal). Drop the batter by tablespoons into the deep hot fat. Alternatively, spoon batter into a plastic zip-top bag, seal it and snip one of the bottom corners of the bag with shears and use it like a piping bag to drop dollops of batter into the hot fat. Fry about 3 minutes or until golden brown, turning once.

3. Drain the hush puppies on paper towels and season with additional, to taste. Serve with honey butter, ketchup or tartar sauce.




This Southern Onion Comfort Food post is a part of a paid promotion with the National Onion Association. I was compensated for this post, but all photos, words and opinions are my mine.




There's nothing like a big savory bowl of soup covered with creamy, melted cheese and bread to make you feel like a real person while you're sick, if you're well, after a hard day's work or just because you want to be a little decadent and enjoy yourself.




I don't think I've ever ordered a bowl of onion soup at a restaurant. It's not something I want people to see me eating as I'm hunched over the table lapping up the savory bits of onion and twirling the cheese around my fingers. That show is best reserved for me at home with no potential cellphone videos catching the action. At home, it's just me, the cats and this big ol' slow cooker full of caramelized onions, beef broth and a few more aromatic additions.


The mark of a good cook is not the fancy theatrics you conjure up with pricey ingredients and dishware. It's what you do with simple ingredients, Make friends with your knife and a bag of onions. If you're not sure where to keep onions in your kitchen or even how to go about cutting one, read this info sheet from our friends at National Onion Association and find out how.
In the meantime, set it up, eat it up and be sure to share your onion soup pics and videos with me on social media!


Slow Cooker 5 Onion Soup
Yield: 8 servings (plus a little more for lunch in your favorite vacuum sealed container)

INGREDIENTS

4-6 lbs white, yellow, sweet and red onions, peeled and thinly sliced
3 Tablespoons olive or vegetable oil
salt and pepper, to taste
optional: 1 tablespoon of granulated sugar, 2 teaspoons of balsamic vinegar
1/2 cup cooking sherry or other dry, white wine
7 cups beef broth, low-sodium
1 Tbsp Worcestershire sauce
1 bay leaf 
1 clove garlic, minced
4 sprigs fresh thyme (or 1 tsp dried)
1 Bay Leaf
8 slices dry french bread
3/4 cup Gruyere cheese, shredded
1/2 cup chives, for garnish 


1. For steps 1-5, refer to THIS recipe and then continue with steps 2-7. 

2. Continue to step 3 or cover and refrigerate for up to 3 days. Or freeze for up to 3 months.

3. Stir sherry, Worcestershire sauce and beef broth into the remaining onions in the slow cooker bowl. 

4. Add garlic, thyme, bay leaf and set on high for 4-6 hours OR low for 8-10 hours. 

5. Discard bay leaf and ladle the soup into bowls. 

6. Top with dry bread slices and distribute Gruyere cheese evenly over each piece. Broil 2-3 minutes or until cheese is melted and browned.



On 1:30 AM by Nikki @ NikSnacks in , , , , , , , , ,    1 comment
This post is a part of a paid promotion with Wewelka USA. I was compensated for this post, but all photos, words and opinions are my mine.

It's as easy as pie.
Have you heard that expression?
I'm not sure if the idiom is supposed to mean it's easy as eating pie or easy to make pie.

I've got both statements covered with this recipe for Cranberry Merlot Pie.



AND if you scroll down a little bit, you can enter yourself in this contest to win some FREE Wewalka pie crust for your holiday baking.



This pie is as easy as can be with dried cranberries plumped up with juicy, full-bodied Merlot wine, accented with cherry pie filling, a sprinkle of cinnamon and a dash of lemon zest. The pie can be left plain, dusted with powdered sugar or decorated with whipped cream. The flavor reminds me of a semi-sweet mulled wine. The whipped cream lattice reminds me of pies I used to see at a pastry shop when I was a girl.

This time around, I'm using the new Wewalka pie crust which bakes up buttery, flaky and is found in your local grocer's refrigerated case. Wewalka does all of the work. All you have to do is roll and bake. The crust comes on a sheet of parchment paper, so you don't even have to touch the dough, except to crimp the edges of your pie.

Wewalka Pie Crust is 25% thicker than other crusts and fits perfectly in a  9” pie. Just unroll, fill and bake. There is no waste when making single crust pies like this one.

Whether you're using one crust or two, Wewalka has you covered. I'm not new to this brand, as I've used other products in other recipes in the past. As an on-the-go cosmopolitan person, I don't always have hours of time to make my own dough, measure it out and freeze it for future use. Just picking up this dough will save me time. The only thing I will have to worry about is what kind of pie to make.



I got the idea to make this pie from my friend and colleague Irvin, of Eat The Love. As I was doing research for this post, I came across his circa 2011 recipe. I was reminded that this post was the very first recipe that led me to follow him in the first place. He's inspiring in other ways, too (he's a cookbook author as well as an amazing human being)

Enough talk. Go ahead and enter the contest and scroll down a little bit more to get the recipe for this sweet, boozy pie!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Cranberry Merlot Pie
Yield: 1 pie

3 cups Merlot or other dry red wine
2 cups dried cranberries
2 tsp ground cinnamon
1 cup brown sugar
2 tsp vanilla extract
2 tsp orange or lemon zest
1 can (21 oz) cherry pie filling
1 package Wewalka refrigerated rolled pie crust
Whipped Cream, for garnish

1. Preheat oven to 375˚F. Line baking sheet with parchment paper. Move oven rack to middle position.

2. Bring wine and cranberries to a boil in a medium saucepan set over medium-high heat. Stir in cinnamon and brown sugar; return to simmer for 5 additional minutes.

3. Remove from heat; stir in vanilla extract, orange zest. Set aside to cool completely. Fold in cherry pie filling.

4. Fit one pie crust into 9-inch pie plate. Flute edges. Dock bottom of the crust with a fork or a docking tool. Blind bake for for 15-18 minutes.

5. Reduce oven temperature to 350ºF, scrape cranberry filling into prepared crust and bake for another 25 to 30 minutes, or until filling is bubbling. Transfer to wire rack to cool completely. Garnish with whipped cream. Serve.


On 5:25 PM by Nikki @ NikSnacks in , , , , ,    2 comments
This Southern Onion Comfort Food post is a part of a paid promotion with the National Onion Association. I was compensated for this post, but all photos, words and opinions are my mine.


Image result for national onion association

I've taken all of the important and the subtle nuances of onions and layered them into this savory pie. It's a cross between a classic southern tomato pie, a buttermilk pie and an onion tart. The caramelized onions start in a slow cooker with sherry and thyme (if you feel fancy). Overnight, the translucent petals of white, yellow, red and sweet onions melt, become bronzed and bathe in their own juices to produce a cohesive tangle of skins that are baked under a mayonnaise and Parmesan crust inside of a buttery pie shell and garnished with a little bit of fresh chopped chives. It's super fantastic.


Onions are literally the foundation of most every savory dish. The classic mirepoix combo of onions, carrots and celery is the first thing culinary students around the planet begin their education and it continues on to how to slice, dice and add onions to everything. Raw diced onions garnishing a bowl of pinto beans is the comfort food of winter time blues while fried onion rings are always a treat at fast food establishments. 


I was inspired by a pie I had at a friend's house. When I asked her for the recipe, I was surprised it was held together with just two eggs and a cup of Greek yogurt. Since I can never leave well enough alone, I went ahead to improve upon it. This pie literally has ALL OF THE ONIONS. They're not cut with potatoes, loads of cheese, bacon or spicy peppers. It's all onion, all of the time. A time-honored Southern-inspired pie, tomato pie, usually has a mayo and cheese crust and it's baked until the center isn't jiggly and the top is bubbly and brown. It's a thing of beauty. 

BUT--The magic literally happens in the Crock Pot over the course of 5 hours or overnight. The beauty of this recipe is the same onions are also used to make the next recipe, Slow Cooker 5 Onion Soup (stay tuned for that gem).





Served with a fresh salad of mixed greens or kale, it's the perfect light lunch or light dinner.
Southern Savory Onion Pie 
Yield: 6-8 slices (per pie; 2 pies)

2 to 4 pounds white, yellow, red, and sweet onions, thinly sliced
3 Tablespoons cooking sherry

3/4 cup Greek yogurt
4 dashes hot pepper sauce (such as Cholula or Texas Pete)
2 eggs
salt and pepper, to taste
3 cups caramelized onions
1 pie shell
1 1/4 cups grated Parmesan or Gruyere cheese
3/4 cup mayonnaise
salt and freshly ground black pepper
3 Tablespoons fresh chives, chopped

1. Transfer all of the thinly sliced onions to the slow cooker — the slow cooker should be half to three-quarters full.

2. Cook for 5 hours on HIGH or 10 hours on LOW.

3. Stir occasionally, if possible — this will help them cook more evenly, but is not necessary.

4. After 5-10 hours, the onions will be golden-brown and soft, and they will have released a lot of liquid. Remove onions to a large bowl and let cool.

5. If you like onions with a deeper color, continue cooking for another 3 to 5 hours on LOW. Leave the lid ajar so the liquid can evaporate. Check every hour and stop cooking whenever the onions look and taste good.

6. Preheat oven to 375 degrees F.

7. In a large bowl, mix 3 cups of the cooled onions with yogurt, hot sauce, eggs and salt and pepper. Make sure all ingredients are well blended and then pour into 1 pie shell.

8. In a small bowl, mix grated cheese, mayonnaise, salt and pepper until well-blended. Spoon mixture on top of the onion mixture in the pie shell.

9. To prevent burning or over-browning the pie crust, cover the crust with aluminum foil. Bake in the preheated oven for 35 minutes.

10. Remove foil from the pie crust and bake for an additional 15 minutes, or until golden brown on top. Garnish with chives, if using. Let cool for a few minutes to settle before slicing.

Pie can be served hot, warm, or at room temperature.



On 11:58 AM by Nikki @ NikSnacks in , , , , , , ,    4 comments
This is the FIFTH of FIVE posts featuring travel tips from me, Nik Snacks. Each post will have tips to help you live your best travel life with 0% hassle and 100% fun.
IF you missed the first post, click HERE for 5 travel tips, from me, Nik Snacks.



Looks like you made it! 25+ tips and tricks to living your best travel life. I've shown you
All that's left is how to book your travel. I have spent countless hours searching online, asking friends, subscribing to newsletters and I have a small grasp on what it is to book travel for yourself and others. By no means do I fashion myself to be an amateur travel agent, but I know how to use these skills to my advantage and now you will too!

Let's book some travel


1. Go incognito

Sunglasses make me look incognito 

ALWAYS search for flights in incognito or private browsing mode to see the lowest prices.
Your cookies are reset each time you re-open an incognito window and based on your cookies, prices do increase when you search the same flight path repeatedly.
Start with a clean slate for EACH search. Close all of your incognito windows, open a new one, and then search away.


2. Get yourself a high-powered search engine

No single search engine is consistently perfect (though I find Skyscanner to be the best). You're going to need to try multiple search engines to cover all if your bases.
My favorites include: Skyscanner, Skiplagged, AirfareWatchdog, Priceline, Kiwi
Google Flights isn't a bad place to start when you're beginning your search. Just know that there is not ONE search engine that covers all airlines. You have to mix, match and find a combo to cover the most area.

Kiwi.com is a great tool to get the international wanderlust going and save money. Enter your departure city, then select a date range to fly. Approximate costs appear over hundreds of countries around the globe from your departure point and the list of destinations is sorted by price, so you to see the most cost-effective place you can fly.

Skyscanner is my absolute favorite as they have map views so you can see where the airport is, track when and where is cheapest to fly, and set up alerts when your flight price meets your requirements. There's also an app, so go download that immediately!


3. Point yourself in the right direction


Airline rewards programs are a great way to get free flights, free upgrades, and free companion tickets. No matter how often you fly, you should be signed up for the airline’s reward program. Every time you fly a new-to-you airline, sign up. Every SINGLE one. Delta is my airline of choice, but you better believe I'm signed up with United and American, too. I stick to US-based airlines since they are involved in all the major alliances and you can earn miles on their partner flights. For example, if I fly Air France, it’s credited to my Delta rewards account. If I fly Air Canada, it's credited to my United account.


4. Extra! Extra! Read all about it!

No one likes to clutter up their inbox, but by signing up for mailing lists from airlines and search engines, you’ll be able to get updates about all the last-minute or special deals. This is one of the best ways to ensure you find a cheap flight. 

C'mon, let's go!

My favorite newsletters:
Cruises.com
Cruises Only
The Points Guy
Fly Almost Free
Scott's Cheap Flights

And you can't beat emails direct from your preferred airlines.
Unfortunately, if you're interested in Amtrak travel, you're just going to have to go to the website. You can sign up for email alerts and newsletters, but there is no third-party source for discounts (although AAA, AARP and college student discounts do exist)


5. Use a travel planner. Save you time and money. Take care of EVERY SINGLE DETAIL from transportation, tickets, lodging, reservations and everything you didn't think of including.

I use A Way To Go Travel or my travel consultant friend & agent, Amy Schwartz.

Grand Tetons in Victor, Idaho


BONUS TIPS:
The cheapest days to fly are Tuesday, Wednesday and Saturday for domestic travel.

For international travel, weekdays are usually cheaper than weekends. Friday and Sunday are the most expensive days for domestic travel.

Airline fares will keep rising the closer you get to departure, but there is a sweet spot when the airlines begin to either lower or increase fares based on demand. Don’t wait until the last second but don’t book too far in advance either. The best time to book your flight is around 6–8 weeks before your departure, or around three months before if you are going to your destination during their peak season. 21-days seems to be the last sweet spot of good prices for travel.

Some low-cost airlines don't allow their tickets to be quoted on comparison websites, so be sure to check them separately. DO YOUR HOMEWORK to understand what extra charges, such as carry-on or checked baggage fees, might increase the cost of your ticket.

See y'all in the friendly skies!



24 hours is not nearly enough time to run through the city of Montreal's offerings, but I took one for the team, traveled to the Great White North and made a schedule of some fantastic eats.

With over 5,000 restaurants, Montreal is one of North America's best destinations for anyone who loves food, world class destinations and access to some of the best gustatory experiences in the Western Hemisphere.

Pull up your athleisure pants, folks. Here's a stomach-stretching itinerary for a day and a night in the City on The Mount Royal.

Let's eat and drink your way through Montreal in 24 hours...


Let's go to Canada, eh?


SOOooo, Eater came out with its own 24 Hours In Montreal guide in September, but I would be remiss in my duty to you as a content provider if I didn't create my own list. All of these places can be reached by the extensive, well-developed transportation system of Montreal (metro or bus). If you time it right, this list will have you eating and drinking every 3 hours, like a good little tourist.

The street art in the city of Montreal is amazing


Sushi at Sushi Saint in Montreal
SAINT SUSHI BAR
I found this gem by doing a cursory search of places to eat on Yelp. Not only were the reviews highly complementary, the photos showed a range of beautiful and creative dishes. I started with the sashimi and apple salad. Delicate julienne pieces of granny smith apple paired with a shimmering, piece of perfect salmon. Pictured above is the Maki Madonna: Tuna, salmon, spicy mayonnaise, mango, cucumber, avocado and seaweed outside. But know that there is also a Maki Marvin Gaye and a Maki Tupac, as well. Best sushi I've ever had.


Smoked meat sandwich at Schwartz's Deli
SCHWARTZ'S DELI 
Montreal is known for its smoked meats and Schwartz's is the best. Mounds of sliced, cured, and smoked brisket on rye bread with whisper of mustard await you. The oldest deli in Canada is a tried-and-true tourist spot, there is always a line snaking out of the door and once inside, you may THINK you're going to regret your decision, but you're gonna choose wisely. Seating is... intimate and cozy. There's just enough room to slink by the table next to you to get to your seat. The menu is on paper placemats and while you may be tempted to order french fries or a pickle the size of your hand to accompany your sandwich, DON'T. The only side worth getting completely stuffed over is the coleslaw.


Betty bought a bit of  Bishop Bitter to make her bitter batter better
PUB BISHOP & BAGG
Known for their gin collection, skip GO and collect your $200 by checking out their EXCELLENT beer and pub menu.
Grilled octopus, shishito peppers, feta, crispy onions? Yes.
Rarebit made with house bitter, hanger steak, fried egg? Uh huh
The Bishop Special Bitter is the house brew and it was the best Canadian beer I tried. And let me tell ya--I tried MANY.

Booty, booty, booty rockin' everywhere
BOOTLEGGER L'AUTHENTIQUE
Billed as an event space, cabaret mixed with a modern-day speakeasy, this place is hopping most nights with an impressive selection of fine liquors, beers and glasses in the shape of boots. Big boots. 1 liter of beer worth of a boot. Go. Drink. Be merry. I insist.

And away we go!
FREE MONTREAL WALKING TOUR
No, this isn't a restaurant--but it's important I add it to the list because this tour could literally set the tone for the rest of your trip. Explore Old Montreal with a certified guide who had to study over two years of culture and history just to be able to lead tours for FREE. They work for tips, so hand over your money as you will learn everything there is to know about Quebec, Montreal, a myriad of restaurants, pubs, bars and start to really feel like you can take the city by storm, whether you're fluent in French or not. It's a great place to start and what's two and a half hours of fun between friends?


Even more ubiquitous than smoked meat, Canada as a whole is known for the poutine. Crispy french fries topped with fresh cheese curds and splashed with brown gravy, this dish is what people come to eat. But THIS poutine is why I traveled to Montreal in the first place. At market price (~$14 CAN) you can get the ultimate poutine topped with big, succulent pieces of lobster and garnished with a little bit o' chives. Easier to get into than say, Joe Beef, the restaurant has no address number on the outside and only takes reservations 30 days in advance, but if you're a solo (or maybe even a double) diner and arrive precisely at 5:29:30 PM when they open, you may have a chance to get in without planning so far in advance. 

Baby's first poutine
PATATI PATATA
If you can't go high, go low. As in, low price. At Patati Patata, you can get it for a small price, like $5 CAN. Don’t be fooled by the small size of the place. It's cozy and intimate, too. Crazy cheap and filling, you can get out of here for less than $20 CAN for two entrees with beer and a good tip, if you feel extra friendly.

Best bagels in the world
In 2017, this place celebrated 60 years of boiling and then baking bagels in a wood-fired oven for the masses. For less than $10 CAN you can get a dozen bagels (sesame is best) and munch on them delightfully all day long. A hot, fresh bagel fresh from that oven pictures above is one of life's joys that you should experience once in your lifetime. It should also be noted that Fairmount Bagels  also exists and is no less perfect than this place. Be a champ. Go to both. 



That's it, folks! Okay--there's more. A lot more. 5,000 more places you can try in Montreal! But this concludes my list of what to eat in the city. Have you ever been to Montreal? What did YOU eat? I'm always looking for more places to add to my to-do list for next time!

If you liked THIS post, check out my list of what to eat in PARIS!


This post is NOT sponsored in conjunction with ANYTHING. I received NO product or compensation. All opinions, photos and words are mine and mine alone.