HAL’S KITCHEN: Stockpiling frozen pizza – Winnipeg Sun

Restaurant News

Like with toilet paper and a handful of other products, there’s now apparently a run on frozen pizza too. COVID-19 is causing people to stock up on various supplies as we all self-isolate and word is you can add frozen pizza to the list. Some brands are reporting increases in sales approaching 200%. So I decided to make a call to my favorite local frozen pizza brand, Spenst Brothers, down in Winkler. And yes, according to Connie Spenst, demand is up significantly. It’s also kind of interesting how Spenst Brothers got started almost 20 years ago during the BSE or Mad Cow crisis. The Spenst family wasn’t sure what to do with their beef being produced on the farm so they opened up a meat store and then started selling pizza too. Their frozen pizzas are now sold in 170 stores across Manitoba. I believe this is a real example of how good will come from all the adversity around this pandemic.


Connie Spenst, product developer with Spenst Brothers Premium Meats in Winkler. Their frozen pizzas are now sold in 170 stores across Manitoba.

Handout /

Spenst Brothers Premium Meats


You know what else is in short supply, carbon dioxide. Because of a lack of demand for ethanol, CO2 suppliers are having a hard time keeping up. Carbon dioxide is captured during the production of ethanol. CO2 prices are up 25% and could go higher as it’s needed to make carbonated drinks including beer. This carbon dioxide shortage also affects meat producers who use it in the processing, packaging and preservation of their products.


Ikea has released the recipe for its iconic Swedish meatballs. The company figures people might be missing them. Here`s also the recipe for the cream sauce the meatballs are typically served with. Have fun!

Meatball ingredients

1 pound ground beef

1/2 pound ground pork

1 onion, finely chopped

1 clove of garlic, crushed or minced

1/2 cup bread crumbs

1 egg

5 tablespoons whole milk

generous amounts of salt & pepper

Cream sauce ingredients

Dash of olive oil

3 tablespoons butter

3 tablespoons plain flour

2/3 cup vegetable stock

2/3 cup beef stock

2/3 cup thick double cream

2 teaspoons soy sauce

1 teaspoon Dijon mustard



Combine ground beef & ground pork in a bowl & break it up with your fingers to get rid of lumps.

Add chopped onion, garlic, breadcrumbs, egg & mix together.

Add milk & season with salt & pepper.

Roll mixture into small meatballs. Place on a clean plate, cover & refrigerate for two hours.

Heat oil in a frying pan on medium heat. Add meatballs & brown on all sides.

Heat oven to 350 F. Add browned meatballs to an ovenproof dish, cover & cook in the oven for 30 minutes.

Cream sauce

Melt 3 tablespoons of butter in a pan.

Whisk in 3 tablespoons of flour & stir for two minutes.

Add 2/3 cup of vegetable stock & 2/3 cup of beef stock, stirring continuously.

Add 2/3 cup of double cream, 2 teaspoons of soy sauce & 1 teaspoon of Dijon mustard.

Simmer until sauce thickens.

Drizzle over meatballs and enjoy.


Most of us find cooking to be a total turn-on. A new survey says 86% feel that way. 71% claim cooking is their love language. When it comes to settling down with someone, two-thirds of people say finding a significant other who can cook is a top priority. And finally, 81% say they are still quite impressed when their partner cooks them a meal.


I love coffee! But researchers say drinking it makes you more sensitive to sweetness. A new study out of Aarhus University says when people were tested after drinking coffee, they became more sensitive to sweetness and less sensitive to bitterness. This sheds more light on how our senses of smell and taste work together.


A guy on Twitter has opened up a can of Spider-Man Chef Boyardee from 1995. And it’s not pretty. While canned foods can last a long time, apparently not 25 years. It’s ugly. The tweets read like the script of a horror movie. Here are a couple of my favorite lines…”I turn the knob on the can opener and wince, unable to rule out the possibility that the contents have mutated into something alive and malevolent. Indeed, there’s poor Spider-Man, trapped in his godforsaken toxic monstrosity.” What have you found while cleaning out your pantry? I’d love to hear, [email protected]


Chef Boyardee.


If your kids are craving a Happy Meal during this lockdown, McDonald’s has come up with a cool idea. You can go to the company website and download and print a template. Then using two thick pieces of paper, you can make the Happy Meal box. Brilliant!

– Hal has written columns for years. He’s also the afternoon host on 680 CJOB, weekdays 1 to 4. You can email him at [email protected]

Source: Thanks https://winnipegsun.com/opinion/columnists/hals-kitchen-stockpiling-frozen-pizza