On Yogurt

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NOTE: All food and beverages were complimentary, but all opinions are based on my own experience.

Last month, I was invited to a media tasting at On Yogurt organized by Jacqueline to try their new menu item, Taiyaki Ice Cream. It was my first time visiting On Yogurt, and I was excited because I have been hearing about their ice fried yogurt. Ice fried doesn’t mean the yogurt is actually fried. Instead, the yogurt is flash frozen so the outside is icy and crispy while the middle smooth and creamy. The yogurt is then rolled and placed in cups and you can add various toppings. I believe this is a popular dessert in Thailand, but we luckily have it in Vancouver now!

 

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Oreo

They currently offer five flavours:

  • Strawberry
  • Oreo
  • Creme Brulee
  • Matcha
  • Chocolate

The taiyaki is filled with their famous ice fried yogurt and topped with complimentary toppings depending on the flavour. The filling below the ice cream is different for each flavour as well, including custard, nutella, red bean, and coconut paste.

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Crème Brûlée

When we first tried it, one side of the fish pastry was croissant, while the other side was the typical cake batter we are usually familiar with. This caused one side to burn quicker. Since then, they have revised their taiyaki so that both sides are croissant and therefore crispier.

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Matcha

I have to say, I really enjoyed the texture of the ice fried yogurt. You get a much firmer texture and once its in your mouth, it melts into a very creamy and smooth texture.

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Strawberry

Overall, I really enjoyed the ice fried yogurt itself, but I found that paired with the hot taiyaki, the yogurt melted too quickly even though it is already very firm. Still, it is fun to watch the ice fried yogurt being made, and I think I would stick with the yogurt just in a cup next time until they have perfected the melting issue.

On Yogurt Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato

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Fresh Prep

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NOTE: The two meals were sent by Fresh Prep for free but all opinions are based on my own experience.

Last month, Fresh Prep contacted me to give their service a try. Fresh Prep is a subscription service where you can select your meal each week and they will deliver it straight to your home or office. The ingredients are pre-portioned and some are even chopped up so that cooking is super quick. All the ingredients come in an insulated cooler bag to ensure they do not spoil.

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I actually really liked how most of the ingredients were cut up already. I don’t know if this means my ingredients may not be as fresh, but it definitely helps save a lot of time. They currently only deliver to specific areas in Metro Vancouver and Richmond is not part of the delivery route. This was a bit frustrating for me, but they do deliver to work places, so I had it sent to my sister’s work place in downtown. You select the time frame that you want the meal delivered, but they ended up delivering past the time. I’m guessing it’s due to the traffic in downtown, but it was quite inconvenient if you need to leave on time.

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We selected the Shrimp and Tomato Orzo with Basil and Skillet Chilaquilles with Fried Eggs and Avocado. For me, I found the choice of dishes was quite limited and it often repeated the next week. In addition, the meals are definitely on the healthier side compared to the other meal delivery services. That’s definitely a positive!

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In your cooler bag, you will find the recipe cards. There aren’t any pictures but the instructions are still pretty understandable. We didn’t have too much trouble figuring out what we needed to do. The only downside was that we didn’t have a cast iron skillet, so we had to work around that.

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The Shrimp and Tomato Orzo was very easy to make and definitely took less than 30 minutes. I pretty much just had to dump everything together and throw it in the oven.

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This actually turned out very presentable! We loved how fresh and big the prawns were. They were super bouncy! However, it was our first time trying orzo and we didn’t like it at all. Just a personal preference I guess, but we didn’t like the texture of orzo.

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Onto the Skillet Chilaquilles which required us to fry our own tortilla chips. I would’ve liked it if they were already fried since this does take up quite a lot of time and you can’t get it as crispy as the store bought ones.

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Because we didn’t have a cast iron skillet, our presentation definitely lacked. We also found that it had too much tomato paste and our chips were not crispy enough. It was quite saucy and we didn’t think it tasted that good. Way too tart.

Overall, our experience with Fresh Prep was quite average. Perhaps we personally didn’t like the meals we had. I can see these dishes being quite healthy though. Also, the portions are huge! Even though these are made for two people, you can definitely feed up to 3 people. A very good deal for sure if you enjoy the dishes they offer.

Ice Pik Shavery

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NOTE: All food and beverages were complimentary, but all opinions are based on my own experience.

IcePik Shavery has been around for over a year now and features a hybrid between Hawaiian shaved ice and ice cream. They claim that this “snow cream” therefore has a nice fluffy snow-like texture. I’ve been wanting to visit for a long time now, but I don’t go to Burnaby often. So when Jacqueline invited me to a tasting, I couldn’t say no!

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You first order at the counter and then you can eat in as there are a decent amount of seats. They have ready-made combos as well as the choice to customize your own.

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Matcha Snow Cream

First, you will need to pick your size: regular ($4.50) or large ($5.50).

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Earl Grey Snow Cream

Next, you select your snow cream flavour. Flavours include:

  • Sesame
  • Mango
  • Taro
  • Original
  • Green Tea
  • Mint
  • Coconut
  • Earl Grey

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Black Sesame Snow Cream

Next up are all the toppings you can choose from. Each topping is 60 cents. My favourites are fresh fruit like mango or strawberry and mochi balls. They have a variety of mochi flavours, like mango, original, green tea or strawberry.

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Mango Snow Cream

Other toppings include tapioca pearls, flavoured popping pearls, mango jelly, almond jelly, grass jelly, lychee jelly, red bean, and crushed Oreos.

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Mint Snow Cream

You can then pick a flavour from their drizzle station which is complimentary. The drizzles include caramel, condensed milk, chocolate and strawberry sauce.

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Coconut Snow Cream

If you don’t want to worry about choosing the wrong ingredients and ending up with a funky tasting dessert, then you can choose their ready-made combos. They will be slightly more expensive at $5.95 for a regular and $6.95 for a large, but keep in mind that it includes 3-4 toppings already so is actually a better deal.

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Sea Cream Coffee

Other than snow cream, they also have coffee and milk tea for drinks. We tried their Sea Cream Coffee which I quite enjoyed. It was slightly sweet but salty at the same time because of the sea cream.

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Overall, I quite enjoyed the snow creams at IcePik Shavery. The shaved ice is not as powdery as Snowy Village’s, but it is very fluffy. I also like how they have an assortment of flavours and toppings to choose from. Will be back for sure!

Icepik Shavery Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato

Chef’s Plate

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NOTE: The two meals were sent by Chef’s Plate for free but all opinions are based on my own experience.

Don’t you hate it when you buy too many groceries because everything comes in bulk and you end up wasting all of it since you simply don’t have enough time to cook? I remembered that happening to me all the time when I lived alone in Spain. That’s when Chef’s Plate comes in handy! On their website, you can select the receipes you want each week (which changes every week), and Chef’s Plate will deliver you all the ingredients you need in a refrigerated box. The ingredients are already portioned exactly as you need for each recipe so nothing goes to waste and you don’t need to measure anything. Plus, the refrigerated box comes with ice packs to ensure your food is still fresh when you get home.

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Your box will also come with colourful detailed recipe cards. I love the step by step instruction with pictures so you won’t mess up any steps! All recipes are categorized as easy, medium or hard when you select it on the website and most of them can be cooked in no more than 30 minutes.

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Since I was cooking for a family of 4 that night, we decided to go all out and cook both recipes, since we were given 2 recipes with each recipe portioned for 2 people. The first recipe was the Steak and Chili Roasted Potatoes. I really liked how all the ingredients were portioned and were even labeled so if you have never used an ingredient before, you’ll still be able to identify it.

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The meats were all locally sourced too which is always a plus!

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And this was our finished product! Looks pretty good for someone who barely ever cooks right? My family was surprised how fresh the steak was too! The recipe uses flat iron steak which is a cheaper cut, so the meat was obviously a little chewier, but we were still surprised by the quality and how you could really taste the beef.

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The corn was also absolutely delicious with a lime crema topped with Monterey Jack cheese. A little tangy from the lime but the cheese really made the corn creamy. The corn itself was also very sweet! As for the potatoes, they were seasoned with chili powder and is a recipe I look forward to making again!

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The second recipe was the Pork Steamed Buns. As you can see, Chef’s Plate has a variety of different cuisines, from Asian, Mexican to American flavours. It’s got something for everyone and that includes vegetarians.

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Although the recipe card said to just steam the buns over boiling water and a colander, we have a steamer, so we turned this on instead and got it done very quickly. You can definitely adapt to the recipe card, but the recipe can be done with a very basic kitchen. Salt and pepper would be the only additional ingredients you need to have.

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And here was the finished product! Everyone agreed that the buns were so soft and fluffy! They were filled with a savoury pork filling that was seasoned with ginger and Korean black bean sauce so definitely had the Asian flavours. Alongside was a side of pickled radishes and cucumber to open your appetite.

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Overall, my family was very impressed with the quality of the ingredients and the recipes from Chef’s Plate. I think this is great for those who want to learn how to cook or have small families and don’t have a lot of time to cook or buy groceries because of work.

If you’re interested in giving Chef’s Plate a try, use the promo code #EVERYDAYISAFOODDAY or use this link to get 3 FREE plates on your first order! That’s over $30 of savings!

Rain or Shine Ice Cream

Rain or Shine Ice Cream has been around for quite some time now and they have even opened up their second location on Cambie. For whatever reason, I had never visited the shop and thank god I finally did! MH, MW, S and I visited the Cambie store in the afternoon on a sunny day after lunch.

They make their waffles fresh in store but you can also have your ice cream in a cup. Their signature flavours are always on the menu, and the seasonal flavours will switch up based on what ingredients are fresh. “The ice cream is made from scratch in house using fresh, natural and sustainable whole ingredients, source locally, seasonally and organically whenever possible.”

Malted Milk Chocolate and Honey Lavender

We ended up choosing the Malted Milk Chocolate (on top) which features homemade honeycomb (free of corn syrup) coated in 70% dark chocolate and mixed into a Belgian milk chocolate base. Malted Barley is added to enhance the richness of this ice cream. We absolutely loved the crunch of the malted chocolate along with the sweetness of the honeycomb. The Honey Lavender (bottom) is made with organic and floral alfalfa honey from Aldergrove Farms paired with lavender from Tuscan farms in Maple Ridge. I’m a huge fan of floral, so this was my cup of tea!

Overall, we loved the ice cream here and the creative flavours they offer. The price is on par with the other gourmet ice cream shops in Vancouver and I felt the portions were pretty good for a double scoop (perfect for sharing). And did you know that their ice cream is 100% dairy with no eggs, no modified milk ingredients or artificial extracts? What goes into our food is really important these days and ice cream is no exception! Will be returning for some more ice cream before summer ends, but I guess they are open rain or shine anyways!

Pros:
– Creative and tasty flavours
– Seasonal flavours so you don’t get sick of the same ones!

Cons:
– Can have massive line ups on sunny days
– Waffle cones are okay in my opinion. I like the ones at Timothy’s more.

Price Range: $5-10

1: Terrible 2: Poor 3: Average 4: Good 5: Excellent

Food: 4.5 Service: 3.5 Ambiance: 3.5 Parking: 4 Overall: 4

Rain or Shine Ice Cream Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato

CoCo Fresh Tea & Juice (Richmond)

CoCo Fresh Tea & Juice opened up their first location in Vancouver a few months ago in downtown and have since opened another in Richmond in Broadmoor Shopping Centre. Since there was a grand opening promo going on, there was a huge line up.

We ended up waiting over 30 minutes because of the long line ups. We found service to be quite unfriendly at CoCo. I know there’s a huge line and they want to get things moving, but a smile or just thanking the customers for waiting would have been appreciated.

There is some seating in this location, but most people grab take out here.

The promo during their grand opening was buy any one of their top 10 drinks and you get a free regular sized milk tea with pearls for free.

You can choose large or regular size with a difference of 50 cents.

Three Guys

I decided to try the Three Guys which is one of their most popular drinks, consisting of grass jelly, pudding, and pearls. This is quite good as you get a bit of everything but some may find that it’s too much. I actually didn’t mind the variety especially since I love all three toppings.

Milk Tea

The free Milk Tea that came with the promo is pretty good but I still prefer the Chatime roasted milk tea. However, it definitely beats the Shiny Tea one. I would say it’s pretty good compared to the other options out there, but Chatime’s roasted milk tea is still my favourite. In terms of the pearls, they were quite chewy, a little too chewy for me personally.

Taro Milk Tea with Pearls

On another occasion, I went back to take advantage of the deal, and also because I wanted to try the Taro Sago. By the time we got to the cashier, we were told there was no sago and only pearls. I was quite annoyed as I wish they had announced that earlier since I came mostly for the sago. Well, since we had waited forever in line, we got the Taro Milk Tea with Pearls instead. This was quite disappointing with the taro tasting like powder.

Overall, CoCo falls below Chatime but above Shiny Tea for me personally. Price is around the same as Chatime at $4-5. Apparently you can also customize ice and sugar level just like Chatime but the cashiers never let the customers know. Perhaps it was because they were too busy during the promo period.

Pros:
– Solid milk tea
– Customizable sugar and ice levels

Cons:
– Service is unfriendly
– Pearls are too chewy

Price Range: $5

1: Terrible 2: Poor 3: Average 4: Good 5: Excellent

Food: 3 Service: 1.5 Ambiance: 3 Parking: 4 Overall: 3

CoCo Fresh Tea & Juice Richmond Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato

Honey Doughnuts & Goodies

Quarry Rock is a hike that I do pretty much every year just because it’s probably one of the easier hikes yet you still get an amazing view once up top. For years, people have been telling me about Honey Doughnuts & Goodies and that you must get some of their doughnuts after your hike. Well, since I came to hike, I thought it would be more wise to eat it first and then hike it all off… Anyways, when we arrived, they said they only had their honey doughnuts left, but they do normally have other doughnuts available.

Honey Doughnuts

We ended up all getting the Honey Doughnuts since there was nothing else available. Man, these are big doughnuts! The texture is more like a cake batter with the outside very crunchy. It sort of reminded me of the sweet Chinese doughnuts if you know what I’m talking about. Is it as amazing as how everyone says it is? I wouldn’t say so, but I wouldn’t mind coming here to grab it after or before a hike. I wouldn’t make a trip here just for the doughnuts though. I think these were around $2-3 but they are quite large and dense so can fill you up. Service was mediocre. They seemed very busy and in a rush to move the line.

Pros:
– Love the crunchy exterior
– Reasonable price for the size

Cons:
– Other doughnuts can sell out quickly
– Some people might not like this cake batter type of doughnut

Price Range: $2-5/person

1: Terrible 2: Poor 3: Average 4: Good 5: Excellent

Food:3.5 Service: 3 Ambiance: 2.5 Parking: 2 Overall: 3

Honey Doughnuts and Goodies Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato

Tangram Creamery

With the sun out these days, I’ve been craving ice cream so I suggested we check out Tangram Creamery in the Kits area after seeing all the pictures on Instagram.

The ice cream prices are on par with most of the other gourmet ice cream shops starting at $5 for a single scoop. Cookie cones which are made in house and what Tangram is famous for is an additional $1 but a must purchase! They also have ice cream maracarons and affogato.

The menu is quite limited but they change it up about once a week so ensure to check out their social media to see what flavours are available.

We chose to get single scoops and got the Mango Sorbet and Salted Caramel. They pack quite a lot in a single scoop so the cone is filled inside as well. The mango sorbet was very refreshing, but the salted caramel was the star. I loved the mix of sweet and salty and the ice cream itself was very smooth. The cookie cones are also absolutely delicious and a great change from the typical waffle cones. I love how they dip the pointy end with chocolate so your ice cream doesn’t drip out.

Overall, S and I both really enjoyed the ice creams at Tangram Creamery. Service was very friendly and there is self-serve water available. There is limited communal seating, but with the nice weather, taking a stroll in the neighbourhood is a good option as well.

Pros:
– Delicious rotating flavours
– Love the cookie cone!

Cons:
– Very little seating

Price Range: $5-10/person

1: Terrible 2: Poor 3: Average 4: Good 5: Excellent

Food:4.5 Service: 4 Ambiance: 3.5 Parking: 3 Overall: 4.5

Tangram Creamery  Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato