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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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Kitchari & Lessons from nutrition school

1 Nov

Wowza, how time flies! Since my last post (June 29th!) a lot has happened. On somewhat of a whim I relocated to Vancouver, BC, in early August to complete a certificate in Ayurvedic Studies and in September I began the Diploma of Holistic Nutrition at the Institute of Holistic Nutrition.

Au revoir, Calgary!

Summer in Vancouver was beautiful and I got to spend a lot of time exploring the city and surrounding areas. The rain started a few weeks ago — as everyone warned me it would — so I’m staying on top of my vitamin D supplements and keeping myself busy with school and socializing (who doesn’t like making new friends!?)

Kitchari with seasoned chicken breast, mesclun, beet and cilantro.

The August Ayurveda intensive was perfectly suited to the information I’ve been searching for. Ayurveda has a very simple, logical (and ancient) approach to medicine where nutrition is one of the key elements. People are treated as individuals with lifestyle programs tailored to each person’s specific constitution or dosha. I learned so much about myself and have been putting all my knowledge to work, especially in the kitchen!

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Homemade Chai Concentrate

29 Jun

Here’s the latest from the Bodhi Tree’s Breathing Room Newsletter.

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It seems this Summer is off to a much wetter and cooler start than usual in Calgary. It seems a bit odd to be thinking of ways to keep warm, but alas, that’s what I’m doing! If you are too, here’s a little something (besides hot yoga!) to do just that. It also aids digestion (fennel and ginger) and maintains balance of the doshas.

Happy Cooking!
Jacinthe
Yoga teacher & kitchen advocate


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Testing a Gluten-Free Pie Shell and Lemon Meringue Pie Recipe

4 Apr

I was given a Piccola Cucina gluten-free pie shell to test out and decided to make one of my favourite pies – Lemon Meringue! I particularly like to make this pie when it’s cold out, to remind me of warmer times to come. It’s also perfect for the upcoming Easter weekend if you’re having company over for dinner. Give it a try with any type of pie shell.

Lemon Meringue Pie (modified from the Joy of Cooking)

Lemon Curd
1/3 cup cornstarch
1 cup Sugar
1 1/2 cup Boiling Water (1/2 cup cold, 1 cup boiling)
1/2 teaspoon Salt
4 eggs
3 tablespoon Butter
1/2 cup/~2-6 Lemons, juiced and zested

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A Summary of 6 Gluten-Free Grains

29 Mar

There are many different grains and pseudo-grains out there that support a gluten-free lifestyle and/or add variety to the usual duo of white rice and pasta. New ingredients can be a little daunting, especially when they are meant to replace such beloved (read: regularly consumed) ingredients.

I thought I’d share this list of 6 gluten-free grains/pseudo-grains from Homemakers.com. I’ve had luck with all of these and now use them regularly. I’ll add my own trials and tribulations with other grains as I try them. Keep in mind too I’m talking cooking, not baking…I have yet to delve into the world of gluten-free baking with the exception of this Chocolate Quinoa Cake that is simply amazing!

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Buckwheat & Tuna Salad

29 Mar

Here’s the latest from the Bodhi Tree’s Breathing Room Newsletter.

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I had a student ask me about gluten-free lunch ideas and as it turns out, I’ve been formulating an article to address just such a thing.

One of the most challenging things about going gluten-free is trying to recreate foods – breads, pastries, pastas – exactly how you remember them to be. It doesn’t help that the mind tends to embellish fond memories, especially when it comes to food. This presents the perfect opportunity to practice aprigraha or non-attachment. An exact replica of your favourite gluten-y food may never exist. Practice letting go, accepting what is, and move forward, in this case to other recipes (of which there are many!) that are still delicious, nutritious, and satisfying.  To read the rest of this article and see the recipe for Buckwheat and Tuna Salad, take the leap to Bodhi Tree’s blog…

Click here for my summary of gluten-free grains and how to use them.

Frittata to boost your morning!

6 Mar

Here’s the latest article from the Bodhi Tree’s Breathing Room Newsletter.

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Rise and shine! With the light returning minutes earlier every day, now’s a good time to start getting activity in at the very beginning of the day. Not only does exercise (mental and physical) do great things for your body, but it increases overall productivity, aids with sleep and will help you tidy up other areas of life once you see what you can accomplish.

Whether it’s yoga, the gym, or morning meditation, you may notice a voice inside your head, called the witness, that has a way of talking you out of things – a devil’s advocate, in a sense. I find the witness easiest to ignore if I hop right out of bed, throw on my clothes, and head out the door. If that doesn’t work, visualizing how I’ll feel during my chosen activity usually does the trick.

This month’s recipe is a perfect post-activity breakfast that you can double or triple, then package in smaller containers to have ready at your finger tips. So, make a promise to yourself, pick a day and before you know it, you’ll be catching the early morning Sun every day!

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Eat this! Red Pepper Cashew Paté

28 Feb

I had a hankering for hummus the other day, but only had dried beans on hand. I didn’t feel like waiting for them to soak and then cook, and in the fridge there were about 10 red peppers, so I decided to come up with something that would use some up. I looked up a few nut paté recipes in the original Moosewood Cookbook, made a few modifications, et voilà – delicious paté that I couldn’t stop eating…directly out of the food processor!

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Minestrone Soup You’ll Crave!

17 Feb

Photo by Steve Coutts

This is another of the recipes that I made for a photo shoot with my friend, Steve. It’s the perfect balance of flavours, packed full of vegetables and super yummy! I generally double or triple the recipe,  package in 250 ml containers, then freeze for easy lunch and dinner portions. Add any variety of vegetables, pasta (I actually don’t put it in all the time) and greens (I’ve been using kale). Most of the time I omit the leek and add more onion.

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White Bean and Oregano Bruschetta on Sautéed Swiss Chard

7 Feb

My friend Steve is an excellent photographer and offered to come try out some food photography with me. We discovered it’s a lot more complicated than it looks, between garnish, cutlery placement, layering of textures, lighting, other accessories…the list is endless!

photo by Steve Coutts

I cooked a few simple dishes to experiment with. This is the first dish we shot, which I think turned out pretty well and it  was delicious! I modified this recipe from Simply Organic: A Cookbook for Sustainable, Seasonal and Local Ingredients. It called for mustard greens but I used swiss chard because I had lots on-hand. I think any greens that sauté well would work.

Stephanie over at Clockwork Lemon, our friend Rachele, and I had had a baking date a few days earlier where we made this Whole-Wheat and Rye Swirl Loaf. I cut a bunch of slices into triangles, drizzled with grapeseed oil and toasted them in the oven. The hint of caraway every few bites added another touch of deliciousness too!

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