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Refreshing Mango, Celery, Cucumber Salad

3 Apr Celery, Cucumber, Mango Salad

I’ve been talking about my need for crunchy things left, right and centre, to the point that I cave and head for the chip aisle. This is where scenes like this one, with my friend Kendra, usually play out:

(Standing side by side, staring at the chips…)

Me: I just really want something crunchy. I mean, I could have celery.

Kendra: There’s celery.

Me: Oooor not…(as I grab ALL the chips and put them in the basket…)

My friend Tami calls it the “crunch factor” — all meals must include it or you’ll feel like something is missing; for me, this has definitely been the case recently. Obviously celery is the responsible HEALTHY choice when it comes to crunch factor. When I mentioned this to my friend Matt, he sent me this fly-by-the-seat-of-your-pants salad recipe. It’s got celery for crunch, avocado for creaminess, mango for sweetness and I added red cabbage for colour, which all combine to make it quite satisfying and full of good-for-you vitamins, minerals and fibre. You can make enough for one or two days, just keep the mango and avocado separate to prevent sogginess.

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Buckwheat Pancakes

27 Feb

I can’t stop thinking about these.

Buckwheat Pancakes

As a natural part of nutrition school, I’ve decided to TRY going gluten-free for the most part. I made these babies in ~10 minutes a little while ago, which even included making by own buckwheat flour in the Blendtec! Buckwheat has a distinct flavour — kind of like chocolate and nuts mixed together. If you’re not a huge fan, try cutting it in half with rice flour.

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Atypical Nanaimo Bars

19 Feb
  1. Raw Vegan Nanaimo Bars top view
    I was super proud of the raw, vegan Nanaimo Bars I’d just made but I was trying to be sneaky and not say ‘raw’ or ‘vegan’.
  2. Julie kindly pointed out what you might already know.
  3. To which I replied…
  4. @dinnerwithjulie oh really?! Shows how many times I’ve made them — never!
  5. In any case, this recipe is such a treat, super easy to make, and much better for you than the traditional variety. Now, someone come pry me away from them…
    Raw Vegan Nanaimo Bars

Miso Soup with Ginger & Garlic

24 Jan

I volunteered as a kitchen helper for a Rooted Nutrition cooking class a few days ago. The topic was fermentation, which was super fascinating. I came out of the class with a mason jar of saurkraut that’s doin’ its thang on my counter (will report back about its success…I’m a little wary at the moment…)

Andrea whipped up a soup similar to this one for lunch and topped it with her homemade ‘kraut and kimchi. I didn’t have either of those on hand for dinner tonight so instead just added a squeeze of lime juice right before eating. This is a new fav for sure. Super quick and satisfying. Yum!

Miso Soup

Miso Soup with Ginger & Garlic
1 L/4 cups water
1″ fresh ginger, minced
2 cloves garlic, minced
Red pepper flakes, to taste (I used shandong pepper threads)
1 cooked chicken sausage or plain tofu, cubed
Noodles (I used buckwheat but you can use rice noodles too)
Kale, carrots, cucumber, celery, beet, shredded (really any other vegetable you can think of)
Avocado, sliced
1/2 lime, juiced
1/4 cup miso paste

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Forbidden Rice Pudding

16 Jan

I’ve been craving rice pudding ever since I got a sample at Silvestre Gusto Latino after last Saturday’s Social Bites dinner (my friend Todd and I were hobby-cheffing and had a blast. Will summarize in a later post).

There are a variety of rices in my house after I went a little crazy at Whole Foods’ 25% bulk day back in November. Forbidden rice is by far the most intriguing because of its super black colour. I thought I’d see what would happen if I substituted it in this rice pudding recipe. It turned out delicious. So delicious that I’m trying not to eat the entire pot of it now…

Rice pudding

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Asian-Inspired Squash, Kidney Bean & Buckwheat Burgers

17 Dec

I had a hankering for a good burger the other day. I find I’ve been cooking vegetarian and/or vegan mostly at home — though I do indulge in burgers of the meat variety every so often — and I just happened to have some red kidney beans soaking without a plan for them. Legumes are a staple in my diet recently because of a) being a student and b) being a student of holistic nutrition. I needed a dish for a potluck as part of a class I’m taking and thought veggie burgers would not only satisfy my burger craving but also the variety of eating styles that exist in most nutrition-related classes.

These burgers turned out so great! Perfect chewy consistency with lots of flavour. I served them on top of raw shredded squash and cabbage with the dressing from my Edamame, Arame and Sweet Potato Salad. I also garnished with a little arame, cilantro and a drizzle of extra dressing. Make a double batch and freeze them before (or after) baking for easy lunches and dinners.

Kidney Bean Squash Buckwheat Burgers

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Mulligatawny Soup & The Million Dollar Question

29 Nov

One of the great things about being back in school is that there are many other people who are going through the same what-am-I-going-to-do-after-this-is-all-said-and-done phase as me. It was a big decision to up and move and almost as soon as I got here people were asking me what I was planning to do after school and if I wanted to stay in Vancouver or head back to Calgary. The answer is: I don’t know. All I do know is that I want to help people get back in touch with the kitchen and their food: I love sharing recipes, showing people how easy it is to make delicious and good-for-you meals, and giving nutrition/life/friendly advice when asked. But for now, I’m just along for the ride!

I made this Mulligatawny Soup for a potluck with some classmates on the weekend (yes, potlucks go hand-in-hand with nutrition school) and reminded myself how much I love it! This version is vegan-friendly, but traditionally it has chicken, beef or lamb in it. Either way, it’s one for keeps!

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Bean Medley Dip w/ Caramelized Onions & Cilantro

25 Nov

If I could eat all the caramelized onions in the world, I would. The slow cooking process draws out the water and sugars from the onions making the final product naturally sweet and satisfying.

I whipped this dip up the other day for a Young Agrarians potluck. Sara Dent organized the event and what an excellent gathering of people with farmers, foodies and new friends to meet. Can’t wait for the next one!

Bean Medley Dip w/ Caramelized Onions & Cilantro

2 cups mixed beans (1 cup dried beans, soaked and cooked — I used Black Garbanzo, Zuni and Navy)
3 onions, thinly sliced
1 clove garlic, minced
1 bunch fresh cilantro, roughly chopped
1 tsp cayenne pepper
1 tsp ground cumin
2 limes, juiced and zested
1 tbsp grapeseed oil
2 tsp honey
salt/pepper

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Berry Breakfast Pudding

20 Nov

I’m generally more of an Eggs-Benny type than a Sweet-French-Toast type for breakfast, but the other day I was craving something sweet, light and berry-ful. I’d seen a berry strata dish awhile back and decided to give a version of it a go, keeping things simple using what I had available in the fridge. This pudding (as I’ll hereby determine it was) turned out kind of like a cross between strata, bread pudding and soufflé; a little bit eggy, just a little sweet and puffed up nicely. These babies dropped quickly, so serve immediately.

Berry Breakfast Pudding

4 eggs
1/3 cup almond milk (I’d like to try this with coconut milk to see what a higher fat content would do to the texture)
1 tsp vanilla
1 cup frozen berries
3 slices bread, cut into 1/2″ cubes
1/4 cup maple syrup
pinch of nutmeg

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Red Lentil & Black Barley Soup + Inaugural MNSC

14 Nov

Ever since I left Calgary I’ve been craving a gathering just like #yycMNSC that my friend Dan started. So after meeting Annie, a longtime Twitter friend, in-real-life, we decided to start it up here!

Ready for their close-ups.

Monday Night Supper Club is about trying new recipes and restaurants, going on excursions, connecting with food and the food industry in our city, and, of course, making new friends. The inaugural potluck was yesterday (yes, I know it was a Tuesday) at my tiny studio apartment and what a blast we had! Breanne brought a Pumpkin Cashew Dip that I swear you could use as a body mask; Celia brought Quinoa Falafel Cakes; Carissa brought Savoury Sausage & Cheese Muffins and Chocolate Avocado Pudding; Annie brought Homemade Bread & Garlic Bruschetta; and Erin brought Raw Chocolate Nut Clusters. A very delicious evening indeed!

Coffee Grinder + Spices = Spice Grinder

I modified this Lentil & Barley soup recipe from a favourite healthy-eats cookbook called Enlightened Eating (written by a fellow Canadian Holistic Nutritionist!) and it was a total hit with the group. I like to use whole spices wherever possible and grind them as I need them. Instead of using a mortar and pestel, I just use a coffee bean grinder (that’s never met a coffee bean!) As a general rule, I always double recipes when I’m making soup so I’ve got lots leftover to freeze. Yum!

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