Friday, October 31, 2014

Easy healthy foods

PHOTO: Vancouver Sun
You don't need to spend a fortune to find healthy foods. In fact, cheap foods might be better for you according to the scientific literature.
Junk food is plentiful and tempting if you’re shopping on a budget. In contrast, many of the foods held up as healthy superfoods — chia, acai and goji berries, to name but a few — are astronomically expensive.
Dietitian Jennifer Sygo, in her book Unmasking Superfoods, notes that the evidence that many of these trendy foods will improve your health ranges from scant to non-existent. She is not a big believer in “silver bullet” foods for better health. That is not to say that science doesn’t have some good advice to offer about what constitutes a healthy diet. It is just far less exotic and much cheaper than the superfoods hype machine would have you believe.
Here are a few ways to get a better nutritional bang for your buck:
Chickpeas and beans come dried and canned, offering fibre, polyunsaturated fatty acids and culinary flexibility. Recent studies show that chickpeas moderate cholesterol and insulin, when they are substituted for meat protein. They are a hearty protein source in salads, curries, stews and creamy dips at a fraction of the cost of meat.
Most people shopping on a budget walk right past the fish counter as sockeye and halibut are almost a luxury item. Far more affordable is pink salmon, which is usually a smaller fish with a lighter flavour than sockeye at half the price. Mackerel is another inexpensive but overlooked gem that is great fried, grilled or tossed with pasta and sauce. Small fish in cans also provide a good hit of protein and healthy oils with a very low price tag. Look for sardines, herring and anchovy. Sygo recommends oysters and mussels as a source of nutrients vegetarians might be missing from their diet.
Fresh fruits contain fibre, vitamins, minerals and antioxidants and may head off high blood pressure and cardiovascular disease. At four to six bananas for a dollar, these potassium-rich treats offer a lot of bang for the buck. Local apples are also a terrific bargain, about 35 cents apiece. Keep a few bags of frozen fruit around for desserts, smoothies and to mix with yogurt, granola or oatmeal. Frozen fruits and vegetables retain more vitamin content than many so-called fresh items that are shipped in trucks for days.
Milk is very competitively priced by grocers as a way to lure the kind of shoppers who are feeding families, so watch the flyers. Cheese, on the other hand, can be quite expensive. The trick is to use small amounts of flavourful cheese to accent a dish, rather than just eating a lot of cheese straight up. Cottage cheese is generally cheaper than ricotta and often interchangeable. Plain yogurt is the least expensive option and contains none of the added sugar of fruit-flavoured or vanilla yogurt.
Whole grain breads are often more expensive than white sliced sandwich bread, but in this case you should just bite the bullet and buy the good stuff. You’ll stay full longer and save on snacks over the long run. Replace expensive breakfast cereals with our old friend rolled oats. It’s not sexy or flashy in any way, but oats are as close to real superfood as you are going to find. Literally dozens of studies attest to the value of whole oats to prevent nearly every one of the leading causes of illness in human beings.
Source: Environmental Working Group, Health Canada, European Journal of Clinical Nutrition, American Journal of Clinical Nutrition, American Heart Association.
My new cookbook Grow What You Eat, Eat What You Grow is available in book stores now and online at

Wednesday, October 22, 2014

French Ceramic grinder in Vancouver

This unique pepper mill, salt and herb grinder uses a precision ceramic mechanism that is extremely durable. It can be used for all food ingredients (except cinnamon) and will not rust or dull. The body is a glass jar. The wood is beechwood from French certified managed forests. Each time a tree is cut 2 to 4 new ones are planted. The finish is not only food grade but even toy grade, meaning it can be put in direct contact with the mouth.

 $35.00 each or $60.00 for 2 
Easy to use, easy to refill and adjustable to find your perfect grind
if you drop your grinder and break the glass jar  you could replace it with  MC Cormink or Ducros spices jars  not the best look but very functional 
Available in Sea to Sky Ocean and Mountain Pink salt
Pacific blend (Australian and California sea salt)
Turmeric & Saffron Sea Salt
Merlot  Sea Salt
Basil & Garlic Sea Salt
Kitsilano Pepper ( Black, white, green & pink pepper corn)

This is my old personal one it 15 years old and still work great 

Here is a conversation pieces this wonderful French grinder for salt, pepper or dry herbs will charm you and your guest, easy to use and refill  adjustable grind  just wonderful grinder in red or green 

This grinder is $50.00 or 2 for $90.00
10 year warranty

Available in Sea to Sky Ocean and Mountain Pink salt
Pacific blend (Australian and California sea salt)
Turmeric & Saffron Sea Salt
Merlot  Sea Salt
Basil & Garlic Sea Salt
Kitsilano Pepper ( Black, white, green & pink pepper corn)

if you drop the glass we have in stock some glass jar for $10.00 per glass 

Lamb Tagine with Apricots and Prunes

The Gourmandise School Logo
 The Gourmandise School  
 Sweets and Savories

Eat, learn, read. 
It's on us.
We realize our schedule looks wacky at the moment, but hang tight, more Doughnut classes are being added and Canning will return in the Spring. Our classroom is filling fast with private events for the season, so we filled a few holes with some free and nearly-free events. Best of all? You can purchase books at either demo, get them signed and cross some gift-giving off early. And eat.

Have you attended one of our Follow That Chef demos? The series was created by Laura Avery, the Santa Monica Farmers Market maven, to bring farmers and chefs together with you. The in-between season shopping tours are the best; you'll learn how to select veggies, how to score the best deals and how to store and cook with anything from rutabaga to radicchio. 

The series returns this Saturday with Heather Lounsbury's free farmers market tour, demo and book signing, followed by a special Moroccan-themed demo with Ruth Barnes on Saturday, Nov. 1st. The $30 class includes Ruth's sweet new book.

Lamb Tagine with Apricots and Prunes 
(Tagine del Kebsch bil M'shmash ul Birkok)
Serves 4 to 6

This sweet and savory dish pairs wonderfully with dried fruit and nuts, such as apricots, prunes, and walnuts. Dried fruit is frequently used in Moroccan cooking; look for fruit that is still somewhat moist and not too dry.

3 tablespoons olive oil
3 pounds boneless leg of lamb, trimmed of fat and cut into 1-inch cubes
1 large yellow onion, chopped
1 teaspoon cinnamon
2 teaspoons freshly grated ginger
1 teaspoon turmeric
1 teaspoon cumin
½ bunch cilantro, chopped
1 teaspoon salt
½ teaspoon pepper
1½ cups low-sodium beef broth
3 tablespoons honey
1 cup dried apricots
1 cup dried, pitted prunes
1 tablespoon sesame seeds, for garnish
½ cup walnut halves, for garnish

1. In a cooking tagine or Dutch oven, heat the olive oil and brown the lamb on all sides. Remove the lamb to a platter.
2. Sauté the onion for about 5 minutes, until they begin to soften. Return the meat to the pan and add the cinnamon, ginger, turmeric, cumin, cilantro, salt, and pepper. Continue cooking for about 2 minutes.
3. Add the beef broth. Lower the heat, cover, and simmer for 1 hour 15 minutes.
4. Stir in the honey, apricots, and prunes, and cook for a further 15 minutes.
5. Remove the lamb and fruit from the tagine and place on a serving tagine or platter. Spoon the sauce over the meat and fruit.
6. Garnish with the walnut halves and sesame seeds.
Wishing you a delicious day, 
Clémence and Hadley 

Sunday, October 19, 2014

Vegan Pumpkin fest

Now then my Farmers Market is over I will have a bit more imd to post simple vegetarian recipes
sauté pumpkin asparagus and Brussels sprouts with a mushroom loaf seasoned with pumpkin oil and Maison Cote Chicken seasoning