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Home Cooking with Habs Tweetup: Trading Time, Not Taste

Sunday, February 27, 2011

by Amy, (

PHILADELPHIA, PA -- One topic has permeated just about every hockey fan's conversations at some point this week: trades. Some transactions have already taken place but even more promise to be announced on NHL Trade Deadline Day.

But trades aren't just a single-day occurence for the home cook - they're a kitchen staple (we call them substitutions instead). Substitutions are usually an emergency measure when you're preparing a dish and realize that you're missing a key ingredient or seasoning.

There's no need to panic the next time you find yourself without one of these common ingredients* - just use the substitution listed behind it:

  • Baking powder, 1 teaspoon => 1/2 teaspoon cream of tartar plus 1/4 teaspoon baking soda
  • Balsamic vinegar, 1 tablespoon => 1 tablespoon cider/red wine vinegar plus 1/2 teaspoon sugar
  • Corn syrup, 1 cup => 1 cup granulated sugar plus 1/4 cup water
  • Half-and-half or light cream, 1 cup => 1 tablespoon melted butter plus enough whole milk to make 1 cup
  • Molasses, 1 cup => 1 cup honey
  • Sour cream, 1 cup => 1 cup plain yogurt
  • Brown sugar, 1 cup packed => 1 cup granulated sugar plus 2 tablespoons molasses
  • Vanilla bean, whole => 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
*Source: "Better Homes and Gardens New Cook Book", 2005, 12th Edition - page 576

Other kitchen "trades" come in the form of shortcuts in order to get a meal on the table a little faster. In this age of hectic schedules and long work days, you want to serve your family good food without spending hours preparing it.

And if you're one of those diehard fans who take off work on trade day in order to stay on top of all the breaking news, you'll want to be sure you have tasty treats on hand! This week's recipe is a quick way to serve an elegant dessert that looks like you went to a lot of fuss...when you really just assembled a few key store-bought ingredients.

Vanilla-Scented Pears
adapted from "Sandra Lee Semi-Homemade 20-minute meals"

Prep time: 20 minutes
Yield: 4 servings

1 15-oz can sliced pears in heavy syrup
2 tablespoons pear brandy
1 vanilla bean, scraped (see substitutions above if needed)
4 pre-made vanilla pudding cups
1 4.5-oz package prepared crepes
Fresh raspberries
Fresh mint sprigs

1. Drain pears, reserving syrup. In a medium saucepan combine syrup, brandy and vanilla bean. Bring to a boil over high heat then reduce to medium-high. Boil approximately 10 minutes until syrup thickens.
2. Add pears to saucepan. Reduce heat; simmer until pears are heated through, about five minutes. Remove vanilla bean
3. Spread pudding onto four separate crepes. Top each with another crepe (almost like a pudding sandwich) and fold each crepe stack into quarters.
4. Place each folded crepe onto a dessert plate. Top with pears and syrup.
5. Garnish with raspberries and mint sprigs. Serve warm.

This dish can also be enjoyed with canned peaches and peach schnapps - or try making your own "trades" to see what tastes best to you!

Enjoy, and remember for all the latest trade news regarding the Montreal Canadiens, be sure to keep an eye on!


My trip to Montreal for the Habs Tweetup

Wednesday, February 23, 2011

by Amy,, (

PHILADELPHIA, PA -- One of my most favourite aspects of attending a Habs Tweetup is actually an essential part of each event's mission - to connect Habs fans from all over the world. I hail from the greater Philadelphia area and enjoy meeting many new friends and faces from all over the United States and Canada.

Recently the Habs Tweetup crew kicked off 2011 with a gathering in Montreal for a Habs/Leafs game and I was pleased to discover that I wouldn't be the only out-of-towner in attendance. One fellow traveler, @smalrus, trekked from Massachusetts - be sure to read his article on, "Montreal, Mon Coeur".

Another friend, @emihawk, made his way from Quebec City for his second Habs Tweetup and has shared with us his experience from the weekend.

by René-Carl, special to (

Quebec City, QC -- Avant de commencer, je dois dire que j’attendais avec impatience ce tweetup depuis mon premier en mars 2010 où j’ai rencontré pour la première fois certains partisans aussi et même plus passionnés que moi. Donc cette rencontre du 12 février je l’attendais avec impatience après avoir manqué le premier Habs Tweetup de l’année' marquant le début de la saison.

C'est donc le 12 février au matin je quittais Québec pour Montréal en train et attendais avec impatience que le début du tweetup pour revoir tous ses gens fantastiques que j'avais rencontrés lors de la première fois. Amy, Rick, Anne... Rendu au Pub je demandais à la serveuse ou se trouvait le groupe du Tweetup et j'ai vu Smalrus et Amanda qui quittaient pour le début du match au centre Bell. Par la suite, sont arrivés Steve, Kathy, Erica et tous les autres. La soirée se déroula comme un charme et en plus le Canadien gagna le match, par blanchissage de surcroît. Après le match, j’ai socialisé avec la plupart des gens présents et ils sont tous aussi sympathiques que je me l’imaginais.

J’attends avec impatience de pouvoir retourner a mon prochain tweetup a Montréal ou même a Québec si tout se passe bien...


Before anything, I'd like to state that I was really looking forward to this Habs Tweetup since my first in March 2010, when I met for the first time some fans as passionate if not more than myself. So, if anything this February 12th reunion, I was expecting it with utmost impatience, especially after having missed the first one of the year, marking the new season.

So, on February 12th, I was leaving Québec City by train for Montreal and was so anxious for the tweetup for a chance to see again people I'd had met before like Amy, Rick, anne... Once at the Pub (Mcleans) I enquired where the group was at and I was able to catch Smalrus and Amanda on their way to the game at the Bell Centre. After that, Steve, Kathy, Erica and many others poured into the place. The whole evening went like a charm and moreover the Habs won by shutout. After the game, I socialized with all present and they were all as pleasant as I imagined beforehand.

I'm looking forward to the next Habs Tweetup in Montréal, or even in Québec City, if all goes well..


Additional reading:

Habs Tweetup Kicks Off 2011 in Montreal

Habs Hockey: Better with Friends, Old and New


Home Cooking with Habs Tweetup

Sunday, February 20, 2011

by Amy, (

PHILADELPHIA, PA -- The word is out about Habs Tweetup - people all over the world are discovering for themselves why it's so much fun to get together with other fans of the Montreal Canadiens and make new friends both far and wide. But like the old saying "food is family", one of the most important ingredients of a successful Habs Tweetup is making sure there's a selection of tasty treats on the menu.

On a day when folks are prepping for their Heritage Classic parties and gathering around their televisions for Hockey Day in America coverage, I'm excited to announce a new weekly feature here at For all you foodies out there (whether you're the one who likes to cook or the one who likes to eat) we'll be spotlighting a collection of recipes to tempt your tastebuds.

Some weeks you'll see a theme, other times we'll feature a recipe simply because it's scrumptious. Do you have a favourite recipe you'd like to share? Perhaps you have a lucky dish you make for every Habs game? We'd love to serve it up to our readers! Send your recipes to - you can even include a photo of the finished product.

Since today promises to be an exceptionally cold experience for the Canadiens and their fans attending the Heritage Classic in McMahon Stadium, we decided to pay tribute to those brave souls with our inaugural recipe.

It's no secret that the Habs have a tried and true method for keeping warm at an outdoor game - steaming hot chicken soup is always on hand behind the bench. Nothing beats the original, simmered all day on the stovetop. It's simple but comforting food - cook up a batch before the big game!

The Perfect Chicken Noodle Soup
adapted from "Good Housekeeping Soups & Stews"

Prep time: 45 minutes
Cook time: 2 hours 30 minutes
Yield: approx 16 cups

8 stalks celery
7 carrots, peeled
1 whole chicken + 2 chicken leg quarters
1 medium onion, cut into chunks
1 garlic clove, halved
1 handful fresh parsley
8 sprigs thyme
20 whole black peppercorns
2 bay leaves
1 tablespoon salt
12 cups cold water
3 cups medium egg noodles, uncooked

1. Cut half of the celery stalks and carrots into large chunks and place in a large stockpot with the whole chicken and leg quarters, chicken neck, gizzards (except for the liver), onion, garlic, parsley, thyme, peppercorns, bay leaves, salt and water. Heat over high heat until boiling. Reduce heat and simmer, uncovered, for 2 hours.
2. Prep remaining carrots and celery by cutting into bite-size pieces, set aside.
3. Remove stockpot from heat and transfer the chicken to a jelly-roll pan. Strain broth into a large bowl and throw away all solids. Skim and discard fat from broth. Pour broth back into stockpot and return to high heat and boil.
4. Separate chicken meat from the skin and bones, cut chicken into bite-size pieces.
5. When the broth is boiling, add reserved celery and carrot pieces. Bring broth back to a boil again, then reduce heat to medium-high and cook, uncovered, for 10 minutes or until vegetables are fork tender.
6. Meanwhile, cook noodles according to package directions.
7. Remove soup from heat and stir in cooked chicken and noodles.
8. Garnish with a sprinkle of parsley and thyme.



Habs Tweetup Kicks Off 2011 in Montreal

Friday, February 18, 2011

by Amy, (

PHILADELPHIA, PA -- Those of you who have read my articles in the past know by now that I won't hesitate to travel far and wide for a Habs Tweetup. But for the first event of 2011 I was thrilled to see even more Habs fans packing their bags and trekking to Montreal!

More than thirty supporters of the bleu, blanc et rouge got together at McLean's Pub on February 12th to cheer on the Montreal Canadiens as they faced off against the Toronto Maple Leafs...but not everyone in attendance was a local. I represented Philly, while @smalrus traveled from Massachusetts and @emihawk arrived from Quebec City. It was a Planet Habs convergence!

Every Habs Tweetup that I attend reaffirms for me the reasons why I keep coming back for more - and this one certainly did not disappoint. There are the traditional things you look forward to like visiting with friends you haven't seen in a while, tackling the All Habs Trivia Challenge during intermission, and cheering on the Habs with a bunch of people who are equally as crazy about hockey as you are.

But then there are things that really make a Habs Tweetup stand get to meet new people and make new friends at each event, for instance. All Habs photographer @PabloJinko was on hand to snap some professional shots of everyone. (Click HERE to check out all the pictures from the night!) And, we all joined in a rousing version of "Habby Birthday" for @adzeee.

It's things like these that, for me, transform the evening into something a lot more special and memorable than just going out somewhere to watch the game.

Another thing I enjoyed was getting to know everyone a little better by capturing our first set of Habs Tweetup testimonial videos. It was very interesting to hear the different reasons why people liked to attend these events and to also hear stories about why they became a Habs fan! (A common theme seems to be "Well I grew up in a Habs household...)

The Habs Tweetup crew looks forward to sharing our collection of video testimonials with our readers - but there is still time for you to submit your entry too! Click HERE for more details.

I heard a lot of people that night talking about how much they enjoyed themselves and that it was one of the most fun Habs Tweetups they'd been to yet. There were others asking when the next one would be held. There are actually three Habs Tweetups planned for the Heritage Classic and one scheduled for Thursday, February 24th in Toronto. Click on the RSVP For a HabsTweetup tab at the top of the page for complete details and to reserve your seat!

Montreal certainly kicked off 2011 in true Habs Tweetup style and I'm looking forward to seeing what the rest of the year has in store!

For more about this memorable evening, be sure to read Rick Stephens' article on "Habs Hockey: Better With Friends, Old and New"


Habs Tweetup Video "Casting Call"

Sunday, February 6, 2011

by Amy, (

PHILADELPHIA, PA -- Far and wide, folks agree: Habs Tweetups are FUN. You meet new people, make new friends, cheer on your favourite team...good food & drink, good cheer, good times! This truly is Planet Habs and fans from all corners of the globe are getting together to celebrate their passion for the bleu, blanc et rouge. And they're quite vocal about it!

We at are creating a video diary of sorts - a collection of testimonials from Habs fans around the world documenting their account of how Habs Tweetup has made an impression on them.

Click on the video link below to meet some of our Habs Tweetup team members and hear their story! Then read further to find details on how you can share YOUR Habs Tweetup tale with us too.

(Copyright 2011 -

That's right Habs fans - we want to hear from YOU! This is your opportunity to tell the world why you love the Habs & Habs Tweetup...just like you saw me and my fellow Habs Tweetup crew members do in the video above.

Habs Tweetup Fan Video Testimonials
  • Who's eligible to participate? Any Habs fan who is 18 years of age or older.

  • Submissions should be no longer than 90 seconds in length.

  • Testimonials must include the following information:
    - Your first name
    - Your Twitter name
    - Your location (city, state/province, country)
    - Why you think it would be fun to attend a Habs Tweetup OR What your favourite memory or moment has been from a Habs Tweetup you've attended
    - Your most creative and fun way of saying "Go Habs Go!"

  • Recordings should be saved in one of the following video file formats:
    .avi, .mpeg, .wmv, .3GP, or .mov

  • Email your video to

  • Deadline for entries is April 10, 2011

So c'mon Habs fans, fire up those video cameras and send us your story - soon you could be seeing yourself right here on! Have fun, be creative and GO HABS GO!!

All video entries become the sole property of and Published video content may not be copied, used or posted elsewhere under any circumstances. All material is copyright protected. Obscene or inappropriate content will not be tolerated. Editing and usage of video entries is at the sole discretion of and; entries are not guaranteed to be selected or included in future publications. You must be 18 years of ago or older to participate. Email with questions on entries and eligibility.


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Unauthorized distribution, transmission or republication strictly prohibited.

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