Big Italian Salad

The Big Italian Salad made in South Arm Women Community Kitchen uses oregano, Italian parsley and basil for flavouring.

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Ingredients for Dressing

  • 1 cup loosely packed fresh Italian parsley, roughly chopped.
  • 10 big leaves fresh basil
  • 1/4 teaspoon dried oregano
  • 2 cloves garlic, peeled
  • 1/4 cup red wine vinegar
  • 3/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
  • 3/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons honey

For the Salad

  • 1 large head Romaine lettuce, washed, dried and cut into large, bite-sized pieces
  • 1 large red bell pepper, chopped
  • 1 cup chopped hothouse cucumbers
  • 1 large carrot, peeled into ribbons
  • handful grape tomatoes, halves
  • handful pitted olives
  • Ricotta or Feta cheese, crumbled ; to taste

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Source: Jennifer Segal, onceuponachef.com

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Bruschetta with Tomatoes and Basil

We made a simple Bruschetta with Tomatoes and Basil as an appetizer in the South Arm Women Community Kitchen.

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The herb highlight in this recipe is basil.

Ingredients

  • 1/2 baguette or crusty long loaf bread
  • 2 large cloves garlic, cracked away from skin
  • extra-virgin olive oil for drizzling
  • 3 small plum tomatoes, seeded and chopped
  • 20 fresh basil leaves
  • coarse salt

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Source: foodtv.com, Rachel Ray

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Traditional Tuscan Soup

The theme for this South Arm Women Community Kitchen is how to use fresh herbs to flavour our food.

CookSmarts Guide with Herbs

Michelle shared the above guide from Cooksmart.com on how to use different herbs for different produce/protein and how to store the herbs. You can click on the guide to have a larger view.

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Do you know the best way to store fresh basil is in a jar filled with some water on the countertop. They will last for 7 to 10 days.

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The above Traditional Tuscan Soup uses rosemary and sage for flavouring. Typically, dried herbs have a more concentrated flavour. so use 1/3 of the fresh amount called for. Or, 3 times the amount to convert from dried to fresh herbs.

Dried herbs require a longer cooking time, whereas fresh herbs are typically added near the end of the cooking.

Ingredients

  • 1 onion, chopped
  • 1 carrot, diced
  • 1 stick celery, diced
  • 1 garlic clove, minced
  • 1 teaspoon dry rosemary
  • 3 to 4 sage leaves
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 cup tomato puree
  • 10 oz (300 grams) cooked pinto beans
  • 1 1/2 cups pearled farro (or soaked overnight; wheat, spelt or barley grains would work here but require longer cooking time)
  • 4 cups broth (vegetable or chicken)
  • Parmesan cheese, optional

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Source: Pedon Farro

Serves 4

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Smokehouse Sandwich, Richmond

Nanzaro wanted to try the burgers in Smokehouse Sandwich Co. on Westminster Highway but it was not so convenient to go by himself using public transport. So, I brought him there on a weekday while he was on a school break.

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The parking lot is not big but there is plenty of street parking on the side road.

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This is a self serving restaurant. The menu is written on a big black board and you order and pay at the counter. They will call your name when your order is ready. Cutleries and sauces are available at a small table near the counter.

Nanzaro ordered the Wilbur which is Cumin Spiced Pulled Pork with Coleslaw for $8.99. There is an option for double meat for $12.99. It was quite messy eating this as juices were dripping from it. Nanzaro likes his sandwich. Continue reading

Kingspark Steak House, Richmond

This was another pre-business trip dinner before we dropped off Ben at the YVR.

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Ben wanted something simple, so we just went to Kingspark Steak House for Chinese meal. The above was the complementary daily soup which comes with the Chinese dishes order. This had carrot, some kind of preserved vegetable and pork in it.

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Ben ordered the Sweet and Sour Pork which is a very Cantonese dish. This has a balanced sweet and sourness which is one of the better one that we had. Continue reading

Wang Shun Ge Grill Richmond on Alexandra Road, Richmond

Ben was on leave due to some family emergency over the weekend. We went out to run some errands at Lansdowne Mall and went for lunch in the vicinity of Alexandra Road.

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We saw a new grill fish restaurant next to Seto Sushi on Alexandra Road. We love Beijing style grill fish and so we decided to give it a try.

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It was just past 11:30AM and the restaurant was empty. In fact, we waited for a while before someone came out from the kitchen.

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I like the glass drinking jars that are used to serve Chinese tea to us.

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We came for the grill fish and so grill fish it is. You can click on the menu above to have a larger view.

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We ordered the grilled Red Snapper with medium spiciness and a few extra vegetables. The dish is served on some kind of heat source to keep it warm. Continue reading

Oatmeal Raisin Cookies

For dessert, we made Oatmeal Raisin Cookies in the South Arm Women Community Kitchen.

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These cookies are soft and chewy and soft fresh from the oven and turned crispy when cooled.

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We served Mint Iced Green Tea which the recipe can be found here.

From webmd.com:

Green tea is so good for you that it’s even got some researchers raving.

“It’s the healthiest thing I can think of to drink”, says Christopher Ochner, PhD. He’s a research scientist in nutrition at the Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai Hospital.

Of course, no one food will protect you from disease. Your health is wrapped up in your lifestyle and your genes, so even if you drink green tea all day long, you also need to take care of yourself in other ways, like not smoking, being active, and eating a healthy diet.

Green tea’s biggest benefit? “It’s all about the catechin content,” says Beth Reardon, RD, a Boston nutritionist. Cathechins are antioxidants that fight and may even prevent cell damage. Green tea is not processed much before it’s poured in your cup, so it’s rich in catechins.”

Ingredients

  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1 cup unsalted butter, softened
  • 1 cup granulated sugar
  • 1 cup dark brown sugar, firmly packed
  • 2 large eggs
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla
  • 3 cups rolled oats
  • 1 1/2 cups raisins or cranberries or chocolate chips (or combinations of them)

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Source: food.com

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Celery, Apple and Strawberry Salad with Coconut Yogurt

Michelle served a Celery, Apple and Strawberry Salad with Coconut Yogurt along with the Quinoa Enchilada Casserole.

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This salad can be served as a snack, dessert or stuffed in a pita with your choice of protein (eg. tempeh, chicken, or tuna) as a meal. The celery adds a lot of crunch to this salad.

Ingredients

  • 2 cups chopped celery
  • 2 cups chopped apple (recommend Golden Delicious)
  • 1 cup chopped strawberries
  • 1/2 cup plain yogurt
  • 1 tablespoon shredded coconut (sweetened or unsweetened)
  • 1 tablespoon orange or pineapple juice
  • sprinkle of sea salt to taste (optional)

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 Instruction

  1. Mix all ingredients together in a bowl.
  2. Refrigerate for 1 hour prior to serving.

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Source: http://www.ironman.com

Michelle also shared the following article related to apple from http://www.besthealthmag.ca

In 2004, USDA scientists investigated over 100 foods to measure their antioxidant concentration per serving size. Two apples – Red Delicious and Granny Smith ranked 12th and 13th respectively. Antioxidants are disease-fighting compounds. Scientists believe these compounds help prevent and repair oxidation damage that happens during normal cell activity. Apples are also full of a fiber called pectin. A medium sized apple contains about 4 grams of fiber. Pectin is classed as a soluble, fermentable and viscous fiber, a combination that gives it a huge list of health benefits.

Quinoa Enchilada Casserole

Another Mexican recipe from the South Arm Women Community Kitchen. For this kitchen, Michelle shared a Quinoa Enchilada Casserole.

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We served the Quinoa Enchilada Casserole with sides of chopped tomatoes, avocado, romaine lettuce and cilantro.

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This is a healthy enchilada baked that you can enjoy quilt-free. It is made with chockfull of quinoa, black beans and cheesy goodness which are high in protein. Leftovers taste even better.

Ingredients

  • 1 cup quinoa
  • 1 (10-ounce) can mild enchilada sauce (red or green)
  • 1 (4.5-ounce) can chopped green chilies, drained
  • 1/2 cup corn kernels, frozen, canned or roasted
  • 1/2 cup canned black beans, drained and rinsed
  • 1/2 teaspoon cumin
  • 1/2 teaspoon chili powder
  • kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste
  • 3/4 cup shredded cheddar cheese, divided
  • 3/4 cup shredded mozzarella cheese, divided
  • 1 avocado, halved, seeded, peeled and diced
  • 1 Roma tomato, diced
  • head of lettuce, chopped

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Source: damndelicious.com

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