February 2nd, 2018

How to Host a Great Party for the Big Game

The Big Game airs this Sunday February 4 in the afternoon, and while the marquee matchup between the Philadelphia Eagles and the (heavily favoured) New England Patriots should offer an entertaining diversion, we all know what the true point of hosting a viewing party is all about–having a great time with friends and family. Here’s our guide to hosting a world-class Viewing Party.

Make A Classic Big Game Spread

We all know why people are really gathering together. For the FOOD! Here are four recipes that take classic sports food fare to the next level. Or, get creative and bring your own flavour to the party. Make the following recipes your own!

Slow-Cooker Family-Favourite Chili

Chili is a true American classic, and you can follow this recipe from Betty Crocker, or make it your own by substituting veggie ground round, ground turkey, or extra beans in place of the ground beef. Chili is a great make ahead meal that let’s you put that slow cooker you got for Christmas to good use.

Slow-Cooker Family-Favorite Chili from Betty Crocker

Perfect Nachos

Chips, melty cheese, assorted toppings, mmmmmm. Nachos are another game-day classic. The Guide to Perfect Nachos from Bon Appétit is less a recipe, and more a do’s and don’ts list for making absolutely mouthwatering nachos.

Perfect Nachos from Bon Appétit

 

Guacamole

Have you heard? Avocado sales rise around the time of the Big Game. Really! And we get it: guacamole is delicious, and any excuse to indulge is good by us. Here is a great method from Simply Recipes that looks divine. Don’t forget the tortilla chips!

Guacamole from Simply Recipes

 

Show the Game on a Beautiful Screen, with Great Audio

The Big Game is as good an excuse as any to upgrade your TV. Get the coveted true black screen of an OLED model like this 65 inch OLED UHD HDR TV from Sony. One cool feature is that sound comes to you from the entire screen, meaning you get to be totally immersed in the viewing experience. 

Don’t have a big TV budget right now? No problem! Check out this Samsung 50 inch LED/LCD Smart TV. It’s currently under $600, and a heck of a good deal! Your party goers will be impressed by the crisp picture. 

Help your attendees feel like they are in the stadium with a state-of-the-art sound system that brings the experience to your living room. This LG 320W 2.1-ch Soundbar with Subwoofer is a sleek option.

 

Plan Party Games

Not everyone loves to watch sports. And that’s OK! To ensure that these folks still have fun at your party, plan some fun activities that will help them get invested in the game. A no-money, no-skill-required football pool is a great way to get everyone involved. Provide your guests with fun themed prizes that anyone can enjoy. Sports movies, amazing TV shows about football, or an actual football make great prizes.

Another option for a fun viewing party game is Football Bingo. You can find several good ones online, but we liked the version below and this one from Sunny Day Family. Print out the cards in advance and see who wins!

 

There you have it! Everything you need to host a great viewing party. We’d love to see how you are celebrating the day. Share your party pics with us online at Facebook, Twitter, or Instagram. Happy Footballing!



January 24th, 2018

10 Healthy(ish) Recipes for the New Year

With February quickly approaching, many of us may already be re-evaluating our enthusiastic New Year’s resolutions…

Healthy Recipes from London Drugs Blog

There’s nothing wrong with setting your goals high, but sometimes there needs to be a little bit of wiggle room to keep them within reach. Maybe you’re simply hoping to add more vegetables to your diet – or perhaps you’d just like to cut out that second cup of coffee every morning. Whatever your resolutions are, don’t be too hard on yourself – sometimes it’s good to indulge (in moderation, of course)! If you’d like to make some healthy changes to your food choices in 2018, we’ve assembled some of our favourite healthy(ish) recipes to motivate you.

1. Spinach Crepes with Roasted Root Vegetables and Tahini Sauce

For those of you who follow a grain-free or gluten-free lifestyle, it doesn’t mean you have to miss out on delicious savoury meals! These spinach crepes require only spinach, water, chickpea flour and seasoning – and can be paired with your favourite fillings.

[Find the recipe at Occasionally Eggs]

2. Coconut Cashew Bars

Three, all-natural ingredients and 10 minutes is all you need to prepare these sweet and crunchy coconut cashew bars. Eat them for breakfast or grab them for an on-the-go snack!

[Find the recipe at The Bewitchin Kitchen]

3. Sweet & Smoky Pineapple Chipotle Chili

When you think of chili, the word “healthy” doesn’t usually come to mind. However, this recipe features well-rounded flavours like pineapple, chipotle, gochujang, pork and maple syrup that make for a sumptuous – and nutritious – meal.

[Find the recipe at Pups with Chopsticks]

4. Healthier Homemade Alphagetti

For parents out there who struggle with convincing their kids to eat real food – we’ve found the perfect short cut! Dupe their favourite canned meal and make your own homemade noodle and tomato dish with a handful of simple, fresh ingredients.

[Find the recipe at My Kitchen Love]

5. Cauliflower Cheeseburger Casserole

It may not be a salad, but this “healthy” take on beef and pasta boxed meals swaps cauliflower – rich in Vitamins C, K and B6 – for noodles, and requires real ingredients. For those who are gluten-free, omit the flour, butter and milk in the roux and replace with a cup of heavy cream and extra cheese!

[Find the recipe at Food & Whine]

6. The Ultimate Low-Carb Stir-Fry

Stir-fry meals are a go-to for any household on a time crunch or a budget. Thankfully, you can adapt your stir-fry to whatever food restrictions or preferences you may have. Add chicken, turkey, shrimp, pork or beef and sprinkle with a splash of soy sauce.

[Find the recipe at Green Healthy Cooking]

7. Salted Dark Chocolate Sunflower Seed Butter

Make your own natural version of the well-known, crowd-pleasing hazelnut butter – but without the excessive sugar and preservatives! Perfect for anyone with nut allergies, easily blend together sunflower seeds, coconut oil, dark chocolate and a little bit of icing sugar and salt for a delectable spread.

[Find the recipe at Spice and Sprout]

8. Duck Ramen (Paleo)

Sweet potato and kelp noodles are life savers whenever those following a gluten- and grain-free lifestyle are craving some pasta. Make this fresh duck ramen with rich broth, bok choy, avocado – and any of your favourite soup toppings!

[Find the recipe at Flash Fiction Kitchen]

9. Za’atar Roast Chicken

Impress your friends and family while sticking to your nutrition resolutions at your next dinner party or celebration. Filled to the brim with aromatic spices, olive oil, chicken and red onion – your guests won’t even realize what they’re eating is so good for them!

[Find the recipe at i am a food blog]

10. Spicy Cabbage Soup (Vegan)

The cabbage craze has taken off – and for good reason, as the vegetable comes packed with nutrients and is a great source of manganese and fiber. Make your own delicious cabbage soup with ingredients you may already have in your pantry, including canned tomatoes and a plethora of spices.

[Find the recipe at Eff Yeah Food]



December 12th, 2017

8 Heavenly Hanukkah Recipes to Savour this Season

Photo via DPM Does

At Hanukkah, Jewish families celebrate an ancient miracle, when one day’s worth of oil lasted for eight days. It’s not a surprise, then, that oil-based cooking is an inspiration for this holiday’s decadent feature dishes. But whether you celebrate Hanukkah or not, these must-try comfort foods are sure to warm your belly and satisfy family and friends on any cold winter night.

Latkes (Potato Pancakes)

Your eyes aren’t deceiving you. Your favourite breakfast foods (hashbrowns and pancakes) have combined into one glorious stack of onion-y dinner goodness. Making these is a family affair: They don’t taste right if there aren’t half a dozen people crammed into your kitchen hand-shaping the patties, fighting over flipping duty or trying to sneak a bite. Load them with sour cream, applesauce, or caviar if you’re feeling fancy.

[Find the recipe at ToriAvey.com]

Jewish-Style Braised Brisket

With all of the pre-dinner shmoozing (read: chatting) that goes on at family events, waiting for that meat course can be tantalizing. Likewise, preparing this mouthwatering masterpiece requires a long-game strategy—we’re talking 3-4 hours in a good roasting pan—but it’s worth the wait. Bonus: This dish can be made in advance and stored in its braising liquid up to 4 days before your party. Extra marinating time, anyone?

[Find the recipe at SeriousEats.com]

Photo via Serious Eats

 

Sufganiyot (Jelly Doughnuts)

This globally recognized treat has a special place in Jewish tradition. It’s easy to fry up a batch in your own kitchen using a cast iron frying pan. Customize with different jams, or swap the milk and butter with coconut milk and coconut oil to make them dairy-free. These treats are best enjoyed fresh. (This also serves as justification for eating several. Right now. You’re welcome.)

[Find the recipe at SmittenKitchen.com]

Photo via Smitten Kitchen

Sweet Noodle Kugel

Noodle Kugel is an ultra-comforting casserole, and it’s unbelievably simple to make. This creamy dish is lightly sweetened, which might seem surprising at first, but have a little faith…it’s a must-have at Jewish holiday gatherings for a reason. Serve it warm or cold next to your main. Adding raisins and a dash of cinnamon is highly recommended.

[Find the recipe at ChowHound.com] 

Photo via Rebecca Seigel

 

Classic Challah Bread

Challah is a type of braided egg bread that’s traditionally shared on the Jewish sabbath. After it rises, each braid loop forms a scrumptious little bun that can be broken off the bread is passed down the table. Move aside, dinner rolls!  This moist, luscious loaf is the perfect complement to any hearty meal.

 [Find the recipe at The Nosher]

Photo via The Nosher

Rugelach Pastries

These flaky spiral crescents are made with a special cream cheese dough, and can be filled with dried fruit, chopped walnuts, chocolate, poppy seeds or whatever else your heart desires. Consider them a timeless treasure. They’re found in Jewish bakeries and cafes all year round, but rugelah-lovers will find any excuse to bring them out, and nobody ever argues.

[Find the recipe at MarthaStewart.com]

Photo via Martha Stewart

Homemade Chocolate Gelt

In old Jewish tradition, money (“gelt”) was given out at Hanukkah. Nowadays, most families distribute chocolate coins wrapped in gold or silver foil. They’re often store-bought, but personalized gelt can be made at home if you’re crafty. Prefer white chocolate? Try mixing in some matcha powder for added flair.

[Find the recipe at dpmdoes.com]

Photo via DPM Does

Hanukkah Chocolate Gelt Cake

Very lucky kids get a Chocolate Surprise Gelt Cake at Hanukkah. These cakes typically have a hollowed out core filled with (you guessed it) chocolate gelt. One slice reveals the spoils, and havoc ensues! For a less messy but equally delicious option, people with a sweet tooth can chop up the gelt and use it for cake layers. In the spirit of the holiday, some recipes call for olive oil in place of the eggs and butter.

[Find the recipe at Kitchen-Tested.com]

 



December 8th, 2017

8 Unexpected Waffle Iron Recipes

Eight Tasty Treats You Can Make In Your Waffle Iron (That Aren’t Waffles)

We know we don’t have to say it–waffle irons are great! Who doesn’t love a fresh, fluffy waffle hot off the iron for Sunday breakfast? A waffle iron makes a great gift, and if you’re married, chances are you received one as a wedding present. (Thanks, Aunt Linda!). But, let’s face it, they’re not exactly a frequently used item. That’s about to change, because we’ve got eight delicious recipes that will bring your waffle iron into regular kitchen rotation.

  1. Margherita Pizza

Unexpected Waffle Iron Recipes

Yes, it looks a bit funny, but your mouth will thank you for the wells of extra savoury sauce and gooey cheese. Plus, the waffle maker doubles as an oven for baking the crust to perfection, and a broiler for melting the cheese. 

[Find the recipe at The Food Network]

  1. Cinnamon RollsUnexpected Waffle Iron Recipes

These mouth-watering morsels are relatively simple to make, and can be made in less time than it takes to make dinner. Bonus: your house will smell amazing afterwards.

[Find the recipe at Creations by Kara]

Easy Chicken and Cheese Quesadillas

Quesadillas are a satisfying, kid-friendly and easy dinner choice, but they’re never quite the same at home as the more authentic ones from a restaurant. The professional secret to perfect quesadillas is cooking them right on a griddle. Well, guess what a waffle iron is—a tiny, hatched griddle. A grid-dle!

[Find the recipe at Souffle Bombay]

  1. S’mores. Yes, s’mores.

Unexpected Waffle Iron Recipes

Don’t have a campfire handy? You’re in luck, because these warm, sweet and decadent treats can be waffled! (Yes, we just used waffle as a verb. Sorry. Not sorry.)

[Find the recipe at Pinch of Yum]

  1. Bacon-Stuffed Waffle Sticks

Unexpected Waffle Iron Recipes

Okay, okay these are technically waffles. But, they look so sensational, we had to include them on this list. Take the opportunity to experiment with the dips—maple syrup, Nutella, peanut butter, whipped cream…the possibilities are delicious.

[Find the recipe at The Gunny Sack]

  1. Waffled Falafels

Unexpected Waffle Iron Recipes

Yes, it’s true—you can make healthy, vegetarian things in your waffle maker, too! These are super easy, even healthier than traditional, deep-fried falafels, and the best part is saying the name of this recipe out loud. Waffled falafels. Waffled falafels. We can’t stop. 

[Find the recipe at The Food Network]

  1. Spicy Tuna Melt

Unexpected Waffle Iron Recipes

This comfort food classic is perfect for a quick lunch, and the spicy dash of hot sauce gives it an extra kick. We love the sound of this particular recipe, but honestly, any sandwich that would go in a panini press works great in a waffle maker. Kitchen space saver!

[Find the recipe at The Weary Chef]

  1. Brownies A La Mode

Unexpected Waffle Iron RecipesWhat’s everyone’s favourite part of a pan of brownies? The edges, right? Well, waffle iron brownies, with their crispy outsides and soft insides, offers the promise of all edges, all the time. They also take a fraction of the time to make than baking in the oven. Top them with rich, vanilla ice cream, and you’ve basically won at life.  

Need a great waffle maker to help you master these delicious creations? Check out the Cuisinart Vertical Waffle Maker or the Chefman Volcano Waffle Maker. Either one will help you create delicious waffle-y treats.

Well, what are you waiting for? Get waffling!



November 7th, 2017

Changing of the Gourd: 9 Perfectly Pleasant Pumpkin Recipes

We are well into #PSL season, as you’ve probably gathered from your Instagram feed. (That’s Pumpkin Spice Latte season, for you non-coffee drinkers.) Luckily for foodies, there is so much more to this versatile autumn gourd than just coffee shops and Thanksgiving pie, so we’ve put together some of our favourite pumpkin recipes to help you celebrate everyone’s favourite fall flavour.

1. Pumpkin, Beef and Black Bean Chili 

This hearty, savoury dish has a surprising hint of sweetness from the pumpkin that will warm up any cool fall night. Double the recipe and save for a freezer full of leftovers to enjoy throughout the season—it’s no secret that chili is always better the next day (or week, or month). Don’t forget the chipotle sour cream!

[Find the recipe at Country Living]

pumpkin recipes - chili

2. Savoury Pumpkin Pancakes

Pumpkin for breakfast? Of course! Inspired by traditional Indian cooking, these healthy and simple pancakes are also known as besan ka puda. Ingredients can be substituted to make custom flavours, as well as vegan and gluten-free options. Perfect for getting you out of that breakfast rut.

[Find the recipe at Ruchi’s Kitchen]

pumpkin recipes - pumpkin pancakes

 

3. Glorious Roasted Pumpkin Soup

Even the people who aren’t into the whole #PSL thing will find it hard to pass up a nice, hot bowl of velvety, spiced pumpkin soup. Top with pecans or goat cheese, throw on a pair of fuzzy socks and a cable knit sweater, and you’ll be a Pinterest board come to life. A fall classic.

[Find the recipe at JamieOliver.com]

pumpkin recipes - pumpkin soup

4. Pumpkin Ricotta Stuffed Shells

Got a craving for a creamy pasta dish, but trying to cut down on the fat? We’ve got you covered. The richness of the pumpkin in this recipe takes the place of the loads of cheese traditionally found in a baked pasta dish. Comfort food level: EXPERT.

[Find the recipe at Country Living]

pumpkin recipes - pumpkin shells

5. Easy Pumpkin Curry

Pumpkin and curry go together like a pile of leaves and a jumping toddler. Skip the take-out and instead whip up this spicy crowd-pleaser, even if you’re short on time. You can pour this delicious concoction over your favourite rice, vegetables, or tofu, or whichever combination of the three satisfies your current craving.

[Find the recipe at A Beautiful Mess]

pumpkin recipes - pumpkin curry

6. Roasted Pumpkin Seeds

We hope you hung on to the innards of your jack-o’-lantern, because these crunchy snacks are a fall must-have. Packed with iron, magnesium, fibre, zinc, potassium, healthy fats, protein, and tryptophan (which can boost your mood and help you sleep), vegans and vegetarians have been using pumpkin seeds for years as a natural source of nutrients. Don’t be afraid to experiment with different flavours: soy sauce, cayenne, cinnamon, nutmeg – time to get creative!

[Find the recipe at Oh! She Glows]

pumpkin recipes - roasted pumpkin seeds

7. Savoury Pumpkin Pizza

Yes, it sounds strange on paper, but we promise this will be on your top 10 list of best pizza EVER. Mild and creamy havarti cheese is the perfect flavour accompaniment with the veggies in this dish, and a fun change from mozzarella. Don’t skip the sweetened onions step—they’re the secret ingredient that will put this dish over the top into OMG territory. Meat eaters and vegetarians alike will be instantly addicted, and gluten-free foodies can use their favourite GF crust.

[Find the recipe at Love Lola]

pumpkin recipes - savoury pumpkin pizza

8. Chipotle Pumpkin Veggie Burger

Looking for an alternative to your pre-packaged veggie burger option? Try these quick and healthy pumpkin patties. Spices can be dialed up or down to your preference, and toppings are open to creative interpretation. Don’t get boxed in by the bun—these baked, crunchy beauties can also be tucked into a super-healthy lettuce wrap or crumbled on salads. They also freeze nicely, so they can be made ahead of time. Future you will heartily thank present you.

[Find the recipe at Peas & Crayons]

pumpkin recipes - chipotle pumpkin burger

9. Cheesecake Factory Pumpkin Cheesecake

Who doesn’t love a trip to the Cheesecake Factory during a visit south of the border? Well, someone did us all a favour and broke down their creamy, decadent pumpkin cheesecake recipe, and now we’re here to share it with you. (Yeah, you’re welcome.) Next to the prevalent pie, this modern classic is a fall dessert staple. Pro tip: replace white sugar with brown sugar for a deeper, richer taste.

[Find the recipe at Genius Kitchen]

pumpkin recipes - cheesecake factory pumpkin cheesecake

Tuck into these perfectly pleasing pumpkin recipes and enjoy all that fall has to offer. Happy eating!



October 19th, 2017

6 Science-y Things To Do With Kids for Halloween

Halloween is a great time to get your kids interested in science. When else does it make sense to make slime and goop and bubbling witch’s brews? They’re not just fun to play with; they’ll teach your kids about how the world works, too. Chemistry and physics can be exciting!

Whether you’re throwing a kids’ Halloween party or just want some spooky educational experiments, we’ve got you covered.

Make Some Halloween Slime

Halloween 2017

Slime is the classic spooky science-y experiment for good reason: it’s easy, sticky, icky, and oh so fun to play with! You can make slime yourself with these borax-free slime recipes–make a bunch of different coloured batches with food colouring! You can also purchase DIY slime kits which contain everything you’ll need, as well as instructions. Want something even cooler? Make bubbling slime with xanthan gum, baking soda, and vinegar!

Ooh, Ooze!

Halloween

Ooze is a bit more foamy and a bit less sticky than slime. Think about those vinegar and baking soda volcanos you used to make as a kid, only with a bit more structure–that’s ooze! You can make ooze with hydrogen peroxide and yeast, both easily available ingredients. For your little witch or wizard, make this magical brew in a cauldron or beaker. Or if you’d prefer to scare your neighbours, make an oozing pumpkin for your front steps!

Dancing Ghosts

Teach your children about static electricity by making a ghost dance! Science Bob has the scoop; all you need is a balloon, your child’s hair (to create the static charge), and a ghost made out of tissue paper. Oh, and maybe some spooky tunes to add to the effect.

Glowing Gulps

Halloween

With a little tonic water and a black light, you make make glowing liquids that are safe to drink. Tonic water contains quinine, which has been used historically to prevent malaria. British colonists in India would drink gin and tonics for this very reason (the gin makes the tonic a bit more exciting.) Quinine will fluoresce under a black light, which just means that it glows! You can usually get a black light at a party supply store.

Fake Blood

Halloween

If you’ve got older kiddos, make some fake blood with them! Steve Spangler Science has a bunch of recipes. It’ll add some amazing colour to a scary Halloween costume!

Galaxy Play Dough

Halloween

If you’d prefer to make something a little less scary, try making some galaxy play dough. By adding glitter and glycerin, you’ll have a shiny, sparkly dough to pull, stretch, and play with.

 



October 13th, 2017

It’s Crock-tober! Share Your Classic Crock Pot Recipe to Win

Autumn is in full swing, and with it comes the changing colours, crisper air, and a desire for comfort food. There’s nothing better than having your crock pot simmering away on your kitchen counter with a delicious soup just waiting for you to enjoy.

Crock Pot Recipes - London Drugs Blog

We know you love Crock Pots. Now you can win one!

October is the month where we pull out our crock pots and those old favourite recipes we love. Maybe some are passed down through the family, or others you’ve only tried recently. But why keep those recipes to yourself?

We’d love to hear what your favourite crock pot meal is and put some of those great recipes into action. Plus, share the love with others!

Four ways to enter the contest:

1. Submit your recipe in the comments below (1 entry)
2. Enter through our sign up form from Oct. 28 – Nov 1 (1 entry)
3. Share your recipe on Twitter with #LDCrocktober (1 entry)
4. Follow @londondrugs on Instagram and let us know in the comments (1 entry)

Also, here are some of our favourite recipes to make for an easy Crock Pot dinner!

1. Crock Pot Baked Spaghetti

Slow Cooker Crock Pot Baked Spaghetti - London Drugs Blog

Who can go wrong with a delicious cheesy baked spaghetti in the Crock Pot? Try this fool-proof recipe from The Magical Slow Cooker or share your very own recipe with us in the comments below!

2. Crock Pot Chicken Noodle Soup

Crock Pot Chicken Noodle Soup

Sometimes all you need is chicken soup and a good book on a crisp fall day. This classic Crock Pot recipe from The Black Peppercorn will soothe your soul – but we also want to know what else you would add to it!

3. Crock Pot Turkey Meatballs

Crock Pot Turkey Meatballs - London Drugs Blog

Meatballs are a crowd favourite and oh-so-easy to whip up in the slow cooker. Try this tasty recipe from Well Plated and tell us in the comments below what you would pair your meatballs with!

We will be giving away Crock Pots all month long through Facebook, Twitter, and right here on the blog. Check back often to see dates for each giveaway!



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