Charlotte & Castel

A Beautifully Curated Food and Lifestyle Shop Autour de la Table in Quebec

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We recently enjoyed a long weekend in Montreal to celebrate a birthday. We also had a chance to visit one of our stockists that we've never had the opportunity to meet in person. Located in Old Saint Jean, just outside of the bustle of Montreal, is a beautiful cafe and home goods shop "Autour de la Table", owned by Caroline Sem. Featuring a gorgeous selection of ceramics, apothecary and unique, small batch goods - makes it the perfect out of city afternoon coffee destination! you can find our whole selection of products at Autour de la Table!

You Can Find Us at Holt Renfrew as Part of Their H-Project Showcasing Canadian Designers!

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In honour of Canada’s 150th and Holt Renfrew’s 180th birthdays, H Project returns home to celebrate the Canadian brands and designers inspiring sustainable fashion and social good - we are one of the selected makers at Holt Renfrew. We are truly honoured and extremely excited to be a part of Uncrate Canada! You can find our goods available in selected stores of Holt Renfrew across Canada. Check our retailer section of our website for a list of locations.

Chocolate Meringue Cake

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Dense, chocolatey and delicious. Somewhat requiring a few more steps than the usual chocolate cake but totally worth it! Make ahead and it seems to get better the next day. Don't forget to wrap it up so it doesn't dry out. Whip up a bit of chantilly and you're set! Enjoy!

Chocolate Meringue Cake:

  • 240G DARK CHOCOLATE, CHOPPED
  • 180G UNSALTED BUTTER, CHOPPED 
  • 2 EGGS 
  • 4 EGGS, EXTRA, SEPARATED 
  • 90G BROWN SUGAR 
  • 1 TEASPOON VANILLA EXTRACT 
  • 50G ALL-PURPOSE FLOUR, SIFTED 
  • ½ TEASPOON BAKING POWDER, SIFTED 
  • 40G ALMOND MEAL (GROUND ALMONDS) 
  • 220G GRANULATED SUGAR 
  • 1 TEASPOON WHITE VINEGAR 
  • 3 TEASPOONS CORNFLOUR (CORNSTARCH), SIFTED 
  • 25G COCOA POWDER, SIFTED, PLUS EXTRA, FOR DUSTING

METHOD

  1. Preheat oven to 160ºC (325ºF). Lightly grease a 24cm-round springform cake tin, line the base with non-stick baking paper and set aside. Place the chocolate and butter in a medium saucepan over low heat and stir occasionally until melted and smooth. Allow to cool slightly. 
  2. Place the eggs, extra egg yolks, brown sugar and vanilla in the bowl of an electric mixer and whisk for 3–4 minutes or until pale and thick. Add the chocolate mixture, flour, baking powder and almond meal and fold gently to combine. Pour the mixture into the prepared tin and bake for 35–40 minutes. Remove from the oven and set aside. Increase the oven temperature to 180°C (350°F). 
  3. Place the extra eggwhites in the clean bowl of an electric mixer and whisk on high speed until soft peaks form. Gradually add the sugar, whisking until dissolved. Add the vinegar and whisk for a further 2–3 minutes or until the meringue is thick and glossy. Fold through the cornflour and cocoa and spoon the mixture onto the partially cooked cake. Spread evenly and return the cake to the oven for 20–25 minutes or until the meringue is golden and crisp. Allow the cake to stand at room temperature for 15–20 minutes before gently running a small knife around the edge and removing the ring. Allow the cake to cool at room temperature and refrigerate for 2 hours before serving. Dust with the extra cocoa to serve. Serves 8–10.

+ This cake is supposed to look rustic and uneven – don’t be alarmed if it cracks or collapses a little. This recipe is adapted from https://www.donnahay.com.au

SOUVENIR, Toronto

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 Photo by:   Lauren Kolyn  for SOUVENIR -STUDIOS

Photo by:  Lauren Kolyn for SOUVENIR -STUDIOS

Bright, white, calming and perfect. These are the words I would use to describe SOUVENIR.

Here you will find the perfect gift, the most gorgeous textiles, ceramics, featured artwork and small batched apothecary, including Charlotte & Castel line. 

This is how the shop is best described. SOUVENIR "is a home for emerging designers, makers and artists; showcasing their talents in a collective, gallery-inspired setting.

The focus of SOUVENIR is to create a collaborative and dynamic space, offering a new and evolving vision of contemporary design. Beyond simply selling goods, our true purpose is to foster meaningful connections between our designers, our customers, our space and our products. We curate and believe in a range of design that is modern, innovative, accessible, beautifully executed, and above all - purposefully and lovingly made.

Besides highlighting individual talents, the shop promotes collaboration, encouraging artists and makers to push their own boundaries to create exclusive, limited run products for our shop. SOUVENIR is also a space for the community to gather, engage and discover. We hope to blur the lines between art and design, to bridge the gap between gallery and retail and to create memorable, evolving and engaging experiences for designers and customers alike".

Now who couldn't be in love with a space like this? Stop by if you're in Toronto at 1232 College Street or shop their soon to be Gift Registry online at www.souvenir-studios.com

Classic Margarita!

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We love our comfy, gorgeous crew sweater from our friends at THE SALTWATER COLLECTIVE and the COCONUT + KEY LIME SEA SALT SOAP (which smells like a margarita) and well, we love margaritas!

So here's our margarita recipe, you'll probably love making them as much as us do, once you've tried this recipe out! And check out THE SALTWATER COLLECTIVE clothing at www.thesaltwatercollective.com and the soap collection made exclusively for them (in three unique scents), they're just as gorgeous as the margaritas!

Classic Margarita: 

Makes 1

2 fresh limes cut in half and squeezed out

1 shot of Triple Sec or Grand Marnier Liqueur

2 shots of Tequila try to find a good quality one

1 shot of agave syrup 

Salt the rim of the glass by taking the lime and running it around the rim.

Press the rim of the glass onto a plate with sprinkled sea salt on it.

Place all ingredients into the shaker with a handful of ice, make sure the lid is tightly on and shake, shake, shake!

Pour into the prepared glass.

Enjoy!

 

 

Spend the Weekend in Lunenburg, Nova Scotia!

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 Photo by: Pentper

Photo by: Pentper

I once spent a summer in Nova Scotia whilst traveling and working on a cruise liner running the pastry department. Over several months the ship ventured throughout Eastern Canada stopping at every nook and cranny of New Brunswick, Prince Edward Island and Nova Scotia. 

With stunning landscapes and salty waters I have longed to return.

I haven't been back to these parts of Canada since, but now we have a wonderful reason to finally travel back and make our way to Lunenburg, Nova Scotia.

We absolutely adore a shop called Pentper, located at 25 Cornwallis Street, Lunenburg. We are fortunate enough that Pentper carries our brand of sea salt soaps and interior mists along with many other gorgeous products and well known Canadian made brands. "They are a small retail and design shop the sells and promotes beautiful design, quality and craft". 

So if you're on your way to the beautiful East Coast, take the time and visit Pentper and the picturesque town of Lunenburg and please say hello for us!

You can visit their online shop at www.pentper.com

Crispy and Creamy Strawberry Tarte

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strawberry tarte journal entry.jpg

Strawberries are in season at the moment and we can't get enough of them! One of the simple pastries we make when we have friends over for the afternoon is a puff pastry strawberry tarte. It's quick and not fussy and super easy, here's how:

Preheat oven to 400F

Defrost and roll out pre-made puff pastry. Trim the edges for more even rise. 

Gently prick the dough all over with a fork or docker and place back into the fridge. Keep the puff pastry cold at all times.

Place onto a flat baking sheet and into the oven and bake for about 30 mins or until fully risen, golden brown and lighter in weight.

Whip

250 ml of heavy whipping cream

40g granulated sugar

Whip by hand or with a set of beaters on medium speed until medium peak. Where it just holds its shape and not over whipped.

Spread the whipped cream over the cooled and baked puff pastry nicely with the back of a large spoon or spatula making waves in the cream. 

Prewash and dry off the fresh strawberries and raspberries (or any berries) and sprinkle onto the tarte. Afterwards, before serving, dust some icing sugar over the entire tarte to make it look pretty!

This will last about 24 hours in the fridge before it begins to become a bit soggy, best to eat right away!

 

Enjoy!

 

 

Pop-up Shop at KIT AND ACE in Port Carling this Weekend!

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We are truly excited and looking forward to spending the weekend in Port Carling at KIT AND ACE! They have invited us to feature our products as a Pop-Up shop on Saturday, July 9th and Sunday, July 10th!

Please join us if you're in Muskoka, we will have our line of sea salt soaps available and also our new interior scents to pick up and mist around!

You could also book ahead for the Mindful Mornings that run every Saturday morning for the rest of the summer season, joining a meditation session in the shop from 9-930am. We will have our beautiful scents available during that time too and diffusing them throughout the session. Creating a space of focus, calmness and living in the present. The power of pure essential oils in our products helps for a more mindful session!

Hope to see you there!

Summer Asparagus Tart

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It's asparagus season and we love having asparagus tarts. I know I  have a thing for puff pastry, but the asparagus makes it that much better! Here's how:

Asparagus Tart:

Preheat oven to 400F

Defrost and roll out pre-made puff pastry. Trim the edges for more even rise. Egg wash or wet with water and a brush around the perimeter of the puff pastry (careful not to drip down the sides as it prevents the tart from rising evenly. 

Fold 1 cm of the edge on all sides inwards to create a border.This will help to keep the sauce in when baking. Gently prick the dough all over with a fork or docker and place back into the fridge. Keep the puff pastry cold at all times.

10-12 pieces of raw asparagus pre-peeled and ends trimmed off (about 2cm from the bottom)

Bechamel Sauce:

2 knobs of salted butter

1 small clove of fresh garlic

Heat the butter in a small pot over medium heat. Grate with a microplane a small piece of garlic and sauté. Do not let the garlic brown, let it sweat in the butter a bit.

2 Tbsp./20g flour all purpose is great

Add in the flour and cook on medium for about 30 seconds. It will be a paste. Stir to smooth out, no lumps.

300ml milk

Ladle in a bit of milk at a time and whisk the mixture. You want a smooth paste. Keep adding more milk until everything is added.

50g gruyere cheese grated

salt to taste

freshly ground pepper to taste

Bring the mixture to a boil to thicken and take off the heat. Add in the cheese. Pour into a shallow and covered pan or container and let cool to room temperature as you don't want to spread this on the puff pastry while hot, it will ruin the puff pastry, stop it from rising and will become soggy.

Once room temperature, take the prepared puff pastry that is cooled out of the fridge. Spread the bechamel onto the puff in a thin layer about 1 cm thickness. Place the peeled and trimmed asparagus on top.

Place into the oven and bake for about 20-30 mins or until fully risen, golden brown and lighter in weight if lifting up the corner of the tart off the baking tray.

20-30g parmesan cheese for grating over top of the baked tart

Grate some parmesan over the top and ready to serve. Its wonderful hot, warm or room temperature. You could take it with you to a picnic later that day!

Enjoy!

 

 

 

The Saltwater Collective

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We recently collaborated with The Saltwater Collective on an exclusive line of sea salt soaps. It was a lot of fun! One of the scents we love in the line is the COCONUT + KEY LIME, it's fresh, creamy and zesty, perfect for the summer!

Check out www.thesaltwatercollective.com for sea salt soaps and also their gorgeous line of clothing, all made sustainably with the conservation of our oceans in mind. It's a company doing some great good!

Sea Salt Soap Available at The Hive

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 Photo by The Hive

Photo by The Hive

This summer our collection of sea salt soaps are available at The Hive in Honey Harbour! The gorgeous shop features local designers and Canadian made items from natural skincare to beach towels, bikinis and letterpressed greeting cards!

While you're there, check out the gourmet food shop run by our local friends Ciboulette et Cie for house made dips, salads and sandwiches to go or a coffee to stay and watch the boats go by. 

Arrive by car or better yet, by boat. The Hive is nestled between the jagged rocks, choppy water and swaying trees of Georgian Bay. Come by early enough on Saturday mornings and join their yoga sessions.

A great way to enjoy the summer on Georgian Bay!

Sharing the Joy with Old Joy Gift Boxes!

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 Photo by www.alisonpage.com

Photo by www.alisonpage.com

We are so excited that Charlotte & Castel is one of the carefully curated makers and our sea salt soaps have been chosen to be included in Old Joy Gift Boxes.  Located in Vancouver, B.C. Melissa Mills thoughtfully sources the most beautiful pieces to carry in her unique gift boxes. The items she chooses are ethical, Canadian made, small-batch, handcrafted goods. The flower arrangements are incredibly colourful and lively, adding life and personality to each and every crate.

The boxes are artfully designed by Melissa herself and delivered or shipped to your loved one with a lovely card and personal message included. Such a beautiful way to gift and receive!

Fresh Lemonade

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There is nothing more refreshing than homemade lemonade.

Fresh Lemonade:

375ml lemon juice

75g sugar or honey

1000ml water

Bring the sugar and water to a slight boil, remove from the heat and let cool to room temperature. Add the strained lemon juice and stir.

The sweetness can always be adjusted by adding more or less sugar to taste and also adjusting the amount of lemon added can make it more acidic or less acidic. Adjust to your liking.

Adding fresh mint, basil or even rosemary from the garden (wash first of course) will bring another flavour to the lemonade. The addition of fresh strawberries muddled or raspberries can also be a surprising addition!

Pour over ice and enjoy!

Creme Caramel is the Perfect Dinner Party Dessert

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The perfect dinner party dessert that doesn't take hours to prepare and is a guaranteed crowd pleaser every time is the classic Creme Caramel!

Caramel:

200g sugar

100g water

In a small pot pour in the granulated sugar and pour the cold water over, careful not to splash or stir this mixture. Place on the stove, medium heat and do not stir. The water will evapourate off and eventually the syrup will begin to caramelize. Cook the caramel until golden amber colour. Make sure to pull the pot off the heat before it reaches the desired stage, as it will have residual heat and keep browning well after. Have your ramekins or dishes out so when your caramel is ready to pour, your dishes are already handy.

Custard:

375g whole milk

375g heavy cream (35%MF or whipping cream)

150g whole eggs

50g yolks

100g sugar

pinch salt

!/2 vanilla bean scraped or a piece of citrus peel for infusion

In a medium small pot, bring the cream and milk and half the sugar to a boil and remove from the heat. In a medium bowl, slightly whisk the yolks, eggs and rest of sugar to break up the eggs, do not overmix and create foam. Just lightly mix.

Slowly temper or add the hot cream mixture a small amount at a time and mix gently scraping down the sides of the bowl with each addition, with a small spatula. Once the mixture has 2/3's of the hot cream mixture added little by little, add the rest of the hot liquid in. Stir and strain in a new bowl.

Pour into the caramel lined ramekins, there should be about 1 cm of caramel in the bottom of each dish. It should have cooled and hardened while making the custard. Pour the custard mixture in to 3/4 of the way up the ramekin.

Place these in a baking dish large and deep enough to hold the dishes and the hot water. Pour some hot water into the baking dish, careful not to splash into the custards and to come up about 3/4 of the way up the filled ramekins. Careful not to overfill with water, it will be heavy, making it difficult to transfer to the oven and keep level.

Have your oven preheated to 300F. Place a rack in the middle.

Once filled with hot water, cover the whole top with foil and wrap slightly tight around the edges, not too tight.

Place in the oven and check in the first 40 minutes and give one of the ramekins a bit of a jiggle to see if the custard moves. If it is still liquid, then wait a bit longer to check again (maybe 10 minute intervals). If the custard moves all at once, from the center outwards, its ready!

Carefully remove the whole baking dish from the oven. If you have a pair of tongs to be able to remove each ramekin from the water bath and place on the counter to cool and then into the fridge until ready to serve.

Run your knife around the inside edge and quickly turn the ramekin upside down onto the serving plate of choice. Give the ramekin a bit of a wiggle where you would like it to land. Gently it will come out and the caramel along with it, making a gorgeous platted custard with a caramel sauce too!

Enjoy!

Our Most Manly Scents of Soap!

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We just celebrated Father's Day and one of the questions we received the most, was for us to suggest the most "manly" scent we carry. All of our sea salt soaps and interior scents are unisex, but there are a few that seem a bit more masculine.

Our CEDARWOOD + BERGAMOT is creamy and earthy with Himalayan Cedarwood as the main essential oil in the bar and zesty Bergamot, it's pretty manly!

The KELP + TEA TREE smells of the ocean and reminiscent of a long day of surf in Tofino, BC.

And of course we have our most popular bar, PINE + LAVENDER which is marbled with charcoal and scented with woodsy Scotch Pine, Cedarwood and Cape Lavender that is slightly camphorous. A sure winner for anyone!

We Use Our Sensitive Bar as a Shampoo and Our Cedarwood + Bergamot Interior Scent as Light, Soothing Mist!

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For the men in our life, sometimes they can feel a bit left out when it comes to beauty products. Our Sensitive Sea Salt bar is perfect for a mens shampoo. It's moisturizing properties of coconut, safflower and avocado oils and the mineral benefits of the sea salt give texture and body to the hair, making it perfect to use without needing texture balm to style afterwards!

Finish off with our Cedarwood + Bergamot Interior Scent as a light spritz onto clothing, towels or hair, adding a fresh, light and soothing scent for the day!

Now the men in our life don't have to feel left out anymore.

Perfect As A Light Summer Perfume!

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Our interior scents can be used to freshen living spaces, wardrobes, linens, towels, curtains, rugs and other textiles.

They can also be used as a light perfume or refreshing mist onto clothing, hair and even a light spritz onto the skin. If using as a perfume mist, please test an area of the body first for skin allergies or irritation. All of our scents are chemical, fragrance and alcohol free, but a reaction with essential oils can still be possible.

We're loving the Geranium + Key Lime as a perfume, it 's so incredibly fresh!

Our Peppermint + Lemongrass Sea Salt Bar is Perfect for the Summer Heat!

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It's summer and it's hot! We're totally addicted to our Peppermint + Lemongrass Sea Salt bar. It's cooling, refreshing and feels so renewing after a long, hot day.

With super hydrating coconut oil, moisturizing shea butter and avocado oil, which is packed with skin friendly qualities, after a day in the sun, it will help sooth and nourish your skin. Not to forget the amazing benefits of sea salt we loaded into the bar! The aroma and therapeutic qualities of peppermint, rosemary, eucalyptus and lemongrass essential oils, it's the closest thing to going to a spa without going to the spa!