fong's kitchen

Sunday, November 24, 2013

Restaurant Review: I Went to Philly

Address: 462 Yonge Street, Toronto, Ontario 
Main Intersection: Yonge & College
Phone: (416) 927-9090
Hours: Mon—Wed 11:00am-10:00pm, Thurs—Sat 11:00am-4:00am, Sundays closed

I Went to Philly is a small takeout place on Yonge street that features delicious philly cheesesteak sandwiches that are awesome not only in taste but in quality and value as well.

Walking in the door the décor is reminiscent of 5 Guys; it has that retro feel to it.  There are a whole lot of dollar bills taped to the wall.  Old-fashioned dispensers contain lemonade and soups for self-serve.

The menu ranges from traditional philly cheese steak to pizza steak, along with burgers and dogs.  They have hot cheese whiz at the ready to put on anything you order. We order 2 of the “works” philly cheese steaks sandwiches—they come with provolone, onions, mushrooms, green peppers and cheese whiz.  The meat is AA rib eye beef and it is fried right there where I can watch.  The prices range from $7.90 for a traditional to $8.65 for “the works”.  Each sandwich comes with a cooked whole hot red cherry pepper.  I took small bites of the pepper (without the seeds) with each bite of sandwich; it gave it a slight kick, and was pretty tasty!

Worth mentioning on the menu: blooming onion ($5.65), deep fried PB&J sandwich ($3.65), deep fried nutella sandwich ($3.65), Yoohoo chocolate drink ($2.50) and coconut water ($2.75).

Lastly, the Philly Cheesesteak CHALLENGE. The wall of shame and wall of fame displays pictures of the winners and losers. This is not advertised on their website, but the guy behind the counter told me that if you can eat 4 philly cheese steaks in 20 minutes, it’s free—plus you get a t-shirt, and bragging rights of course.  If you fail, it will cost you $30.  I am inclined to take him up on this challenge one day.

Final grade – good value, tasty food, nice staff.  4.5 out of 5

Sunday, November 3, 2013

Italian Chicken Soup

There's been a whole lot of sniffling, sneezing and coughing happening around the house lately.

The munchkins have a cold.

So naturally, we made soup.

I didn't feel like having regular chicken soup. I just wasn't feeling it, after all chicken soup can be pretty boring.
Luckily I found this gem of a recipe. Like standard chicken soup but with an italian flare - chopped tomatoes, fresh oregano, bell peppers and parmesan cheese. Nothing boring about that.
Also this was the first time the littlest Fong ate bell peppers without without a fuss. He saw them floating around but didn't even question it. Therefore  this soup along with being delicious must also be magic. Pure magic.


- pasta
- olive oil, 1 tablespoon
- 1 whole chicken
- 1 whole medium onion, diced
- 1 pkg chicken broth
- 1 red bell pepper, diced
- 1 orange bell pepper, diced
- 2 stalks of celery, diced
- 1 can tomatoes, diced
- 1 1/2 cups cream
- 4 tbsp fresh oregano, minced
- salt and pepper to taste
- grated parmesan


Cook pasta according to directions on the package to "al dente", drain and set aside.

Place 1 whole chicken in to a pot and pour in the entire package of chicken stock, then pour water over the top until the entire chicken is covered. Bring to a boil and then reduce to a simmer. Simmer for about 30 minutes.

After the 30 minutes is up: remove the chicken from the pot, allow to slightly cool and then remove all the meat off of the bone. Discard the bone and return the chicken back to the pot and continue to simmer.

Meanwhile get a pan and sauté the onion, bell peppers and celery for 5 to 10 minutes. Add the sautéd vegetables and the diced canned tomatoes to the simmering pot. Simmer for 20 minutes.

When your 20 minutes are almost up: sauté the oregano with about a tablespoon of olive oil just for a minute. Then add the oregano to the soup along with the cream and cooked pasta. Stir and turn off the heat. Season with salt and pepper. Enjoy.

Monday, October 14, 2013

Mushroom & Leek Stuffing

I've never really had to worry about cooking for Thanksgiving dinner, my mother always makes an amazing Thanksgiving spread. Roasted turkey, lamb and duck, homemade cranberry sauce, and spinach soufflé are just a few on her menu. And my favourite - this amazing liver stuffing, which she announced that she was in fact not making this year, before threatening to make the box stuff. I was struck with disappointment but I knew I had to now take matters in to my own hands. I didn't want to make her stuffing - I didn't have the courage to try and replicate a recipe she had perfected so I went in search of something different.
Mr. Fong found this recipe for mushroom & leek stuffing and I decided to give it a try. I changed it up just a bit and I have to say the results were awesome. I can't say it holds a special place in my heart the way my mom's stuffing does but it was really good.

- 1/4 cup butter
- 3 leeks, sliced
- 1 cup celery, sliced
- 3 cloves garlic, minced
- 1 package of white mushrooms, sliced
- 1/4 tsp salt
- 1/4 tsp pepper
- 1 tbsp fresh sage, chopped
- 2 tsp fresh rosemary, chopped
- 1 loaf multigrain bread, cubed
- 1/2 cup parmesan cheese, grated
- 2 cups chicken broth

- melt butter over high heat
- add leeks, garlic and celery - cook for 5 minutes
- stir in mushrooms - cook for another 5 minutes
- add in salt and pepper
- move the veggies to a bowl and stir in rosemary and sage
- add in the bread and parmesan cheese
- toss, pour in the broth and toss again
- pour the mixture in to a baking dish
- cover the dish with tin foil and bake for 20 minutes at 375
- uncover the dish and bake for 15 minutes more

Happy Thanksgiving Canada!

Tuesday, August 6, 2013

Jamaican Rice & Peas

Tuesdays are always my day off- my one day of the week where I can tidy the house, get caught up on the laundry and do the grocery shopping.
Since I have more time at home I am much more likely to try out a new recipe on a Tuesday. And here it is. I have never attempted this before and I am so happy with the way it turned out-- especially since I used brown rice (& you couldn't even tell it was brown rice!).
This recipe is definitely a keeper!

Thursday, August 1, 2013

Cilantro-Lime Grilled Chicken & Tomato-Avocado Salsa

Wow, August 1st already. Only four more weeks of summer. It just doesn't feel like enough. I cringe when I see all the back-to-school displays popping up in stores. I'm not ready to let go of summer quite yet.

Light, fresh and easy, this chicken and salsa are just oozing with summer time goodness.

Thursday, May 2, 2013

Coconut-Banana Loaf

I don't know what my bananas have been up to. They appear to have been getting themselves in to a bit of trouble. One day they're green... the next day they're all beat-up and bruised.

Batches upon batches of banana muffins have been flying out of my kitchen for weeks. And y'know what? I've had it-- I'm sick of banana bread.

This recipe will take care of one pesky spotted banana and  leave you with a sweet coconut bread, with only a hint of banana.

Sunday, April 28, 2013

Bowtie Alfredo

Whew. This week was a crazy one. It was quite a struggle getting back in to the school routine. And then even the weekend didn't feel like a weekend. To spite the lovely spring weather the weekend seemed to only serve as some extra prep-time for the week. I spent my morning compiling recipes and creating a menu/shopping list for the week and then I spent my afternoon assembling two lasagnas (one classic and one tex-mex, for quick week day pop-in-the-oven meals), before actually making tonights dinner.

This is a simple, fairly quick dinner. Inspired by The Pioneer Woman, I took her recipe for a spin, tweaking it slightly as I went along.