a peek inside the fishbowl

19 Dec, 2009

Starved for time? Delegate dinner.

Posted by andrea tomkins in: Oh! Things!|Ottawa|Recipes and Food

My SavvyMom piece this week was about a sweet little catering and take-out shop here in Ottawa called Epicuria Fine Food Store and Catering. You can read it here if you missed it. 

I cannot express how much I love the idea of someone else doing all the cooking, even if it is for just one night.

Earlier this month I had the opportunity to visit the store and chat with Tracey Black, the owner and executive chef. She’s a mom too – and you know what – she gets it. She really gets it. She knows how tough it can be this time of year. As I wrote in the article; many of us get overwhelmed with food-related commitments this time of year; potlucks, cookie exchanges, guests and family for dinner etc exhausting etc. So why not make it easier and get some help? Do your own turkey and buy the side dishes. Make the hor d’oeuvres and buy the dips. Make your own soup and buy the stock.

Make it easier any way you can and keep a hold on your holiday sanity. That’s worth a few bucks to me.

At the end of our interview I was looking at Epicuria’s boxes of pretty Christmas-themed shortbread cookies. I made a joke about how easy it would be to pass them off as my own. She laughed, we encourage it, she said. Now that’s my kind of gal.

1 Response to "Starved for time? Delegate dinner."

1 | betsy mae

December 19th, 2009 at 8:45 am


The best dinner party I ever went to was one where the hostess (who had a particularly stressful week) decided at the last moment that she couldn’t pull it all together and made the decision to order in food. We got to her home and she said ‘You’ll notice that I haven’t started cooking yet, and I don’t want you to go anywhere in my home except the main floor because I didn’t clean. We are having take out so that I can stop feeling stressed out and just enjoy your company”. I didn’t mind one bit, and it was an awesome dinner party because we got to hang out the entire time, no disappearing to make the gravy, or to check on the chicken. The important thing was that we got to spend time together.

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  • Heather: Thank you for the reminder. Having the REDBLACKS in the Grey Cup this year took over in the brain.
  • andrea tomkins: Claudette, I do love those mom and pop shops! We have lots in this area too. Binki, to answer your question, yes, I'm representing Ottawa, even th
  • binki: I don't get this. You are representing Ottawa? Just you...for the whole city?
  • Claudette: We live in a neighbourhood south of Lakeshore (along Lake Ontario) and all along Lakeshore there are many bustling little businesses, not chains, most
  • andrea tomkins: Brenda ... I haven't! I will definitely check it out. Thanks for the recommendation!
  • Tricia: Oooh, I love this stuff!
  • Caroline: Zaatar pita chips crumbled instead of croutons. I just had the chips with homemade hummus and tabbouleh for lunch. Yum!

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My name is Andrea and I live in the Westboro area of Ottawa with my husband Mark and our two daughters Emma (16) and Sarah (14). I am the managing editor of our community newspaper, the Kitchissippi Times, and a regular contributor to MediaSmarts.ca. I am a longtime Ottawa blogger, and I've occupied this little corner of the WWW since 1999... which makes me either a total dinosaur or a veteran, I'm not sure which! The Fishbowl is my whiteboard, water cooler, and journal, all rolled into one. I'm passionate about healthy living, arts and culture, family travel, great gear, good food, and sharing the best of Ottawa for families. I also love vegetables, photography, gadgets, and great design.

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