cooking for one // pear and brie crostini

This is the first time I’m sharing a recipe on here that I didn’t come up with on my own. In fact, I didn’t even make this… my sister made it for us at a family dinner! I wanted to share this recipe anyways because it’s so easy and was pretty darn tasty. I’ll certainly be making this next time I have to come up with an appetizer on the fly. It was so easy, quick and flavourful. Plus, you only need a few ingredients. It makes quite a bit too but you don’t have to make a lot if you don’t want to!

You’ll need a wheel of brie cheese, a french baguette, a pear or two, fresh thyme, a bit of olive oil and balsamic glaze. I would suggest getting the President’s Choice balsamic glaze!

First, preheat the oven to around 400 degrees. Then slice the baguette into thin slices about half an inch thick. Lightly coat these slices with olive oil and then put them into the oven to get crispy – about 10 minutes.

Meanwhile, chop up the pears into thin slices just a bit smaller than the baguettes. After, cut the brie into the same size slices as your pears – so they will warm up from the baguette a bit. You’ll want to chop some fresh thyme to garnish and to add that unique flavour. Once the baguettes are crisp, remove them from the oven and get to work. Stack the pear on the baguette and the brie. Then drizzle balsamic glaze evenly over the plate and sprinkle some thyme on top.

And you’re done! This can easily be done in less than 20 minutes. Talk about an easy and different appetizer for Spring, eh?

Tips for a better public transit experience

It’s insane how many of us take public transit to work each day. It’s literally like hunger games out there. Some commuters rely on trains, buses, subways and streetcars to get to work. Luckily for me, I just have to take a train for about forty minutes to get to the city. That said, I do drive about 25 minutes to get the to the train stop. There are a few factors that can influence how poor or how well your commute will be. Some factors include scents, the people around you, if the transit is running on time and sound levels on the train/bus, etc. Another key thing to remember is your comfort.

So here are some tips on how to make the most out of your public transit experience. After all, some of us spend two or more hours a day on public transit while others only have to endure the public transit system occasionally.

Tip #1 – Arrive early
There is nothing worse than being in a rush – or missing your ride. Public transit doesn’t wait for you and rightfully so – everyone riding typically has places to be and faces to see. Be sure to give yourself enough time to load up the car and finding parking. I know that where I park spots are limited and if you don’t find parking you are really SOL.

Tip #2 – Dress accordingly
Sure you might be going to work where your dress code calls for formal wear. You might not want to show up to a meeting with running shoes on or rubber boots on in the rain. But it’s best to wear the appropriate clothing including outerwear and shoes for your commute. Nothing is worse than being uncomfortable, too warm, sore or wet. For this tip, I suggest dressing in layers or at least checking the weather for the day before you leave.

Tip #3 – Exercise your brain
Avoid boredom or having to people watch by bringing a book, puzzle, or something else to keep your brain in gear. Some people like to read the newspaper, some bring their eReaders and plenty are on their phones. Whatever you’re doing, put some effort in to get yourself thinking. Read a case study or maybe you’re the type to play Sudoku.

Tip #4 – Embrace technology to stay connected
Check your local transit system to see if they have a Twitter account where they post live updates. This could save you from getting yourself stuck in a delay due to construction or weather. If you don’t already have the official mobile app of the transit company you are working for – they maybe you should. Not only can you usually find schedules but newsworthy information and warnings are often communicated here.

Tip #5 – Rest your eyes
This is huge. Especially in the mornings, everyone is getting a little more closed eye time on their commute because they can! The one thing you want to avoid is sleeping past your stop. If you know what time you’re expected to be there then set an alarm on your phone to wake you just before you arrive.

Hopefully, some of these tips will help you feel better about taking public transit. If you have any other tips, I’d love to know them! Send me an email or connect with me on Instagram @BoyWhoBlogs!