How To Make Tzatziki

In the South Arm Community Kitchen, Minoo whipped up 6 dips. These dips are great for game nights with a group of friends. They also made great appetizers.

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These dips can be served with baguette, pita bread, corn chips, crackers and assortment of vegetables.

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We simply love the great colours of the dips. Can you guess it by its colour?

The first dip is Tzatziki which is popular in Greek cuisine.

Source: unknown

Prep time: 10 mins;  Yield: 2 cups

Ingredients

  • 1 cup Greek style yogurt
  • 1 cup finely diced cucumber
  • 2 tablespoons freshly chopped dill
  • lemon juice to taste
  • 2 small shallots finely chopped or 1/2 small red onion finely chopped
  • salt and pepper to taste

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If you cannot find Greek yogurt which sometimes called Mediterranean-style yogurt, you can make your own substitute with plain yogurt. Just line a colander with a double layer cheesecloth and place over a bowl. Pour in 2 cups of plain yogurt and chill overnight in the fridge. Discard the liquid the next morning. You’ll end up with 1 cup of Greek-style yogurt which is thicker than plain yogurt.

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Cranberry Nut Loaf

Stella shared this lovely Cranberry Nut Loaf with the members of the South Arm Cooking Club for seniors. She was given a cook book by one of the members of the South Arm seniors titled “A World Community Cookbook’, Simply in Season. This recipe from extracted from this cookbook.
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Stella insisted that everyone must try her cake because it is very rare for her to bake. Of course, we will never resist such a healthy cake loaded with flax seeds, cranberries and nuts.

Ingredients

Dry:

  • 1 cup (250ml) whole wheat flour
  • 1 cup (250ml) all-purpose flour
  • 1/3 cup (75ml) flax seed meal
  • 1 1//2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt

Wet:

  • 3/4 cup (175ml) sugar
  • 3/4 cup (175ml) orange juice
  • 1/4 cup (60ml) oil
  • 2 tablespoons grated orange zest
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla

Additions:

  • 1 1/2 cups (375ml) sweetened dried cranberries (coarsely chopped)
  • 1/2 cup (125ml) walnuts or pecans (chopped)

This recipe yields 1 loaf.

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Hearty Bean and Barley Soup

I did not get to taste this Hearty Bean and Barley Soup in the South Arm Cooking Club for Seniors as Charlene made this second soup for the seniors to bring home. A mixture of kidney beans and spinach give this soup a triple-punch of nutrition in the form of iron, fiber, and calcium. You can also vary this soup by adding shredded chicken or different vegetables.

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This is a great soup to freeze in 1 or 2 cups portions to reheat for the future. If you intend to freeze it, do not add the spinach. You may add the spinach just before you serve the soup after reheating. You may need to add an extra half cup to one cup of water to the leftovers, since the barley will continue to absorb liquid over time.

Ingredients

  • 1 (19 ounce) can dark red kidney beans, rinsed and drained
  • 2 teaspoons olive oil
  • 1 onion, chopped
  • 1 carrot, chopped
  • 1 stalk celery, chopped
  • 6 garlic cloves, minced
  • 2 teaspoons dry rosemary, minced
  • 2 boxes less-sodium chicken broth (8 cups broth)
  • 1 can diced tomatoes, undrained
  • 1 cup pearl barley
  • 16 ounces bag spinach
  • 1/4 teaspoons freshly ground black pepper
  • Parmesan cheese to serve, optional

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Paul, Chris O’Brennam and Marcel made this hearty soup adapted from Cooking Light.

Prep time: 15 mins; Cook time: 50 mins

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Beet and Cabbage Borscht

This Beet and Cabbage Borscht soup is a wonderful winter treat. It uses vegetables that are readily available and inexpensive. Borscht is originated from Ukrainian and is popular in Eastern and Central Europe.

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The cheery colour of the Beet and Cabbage Borscht is more like a stew than most soup. Borscht is another soup that freezes well.

Ingredients

  • 1 tablespoon vegetable oil
  • 6 medium size beets, peeled and diced
  • 1 small russet potato, peeled and diced
  • 2 small carrots, peeled and diced
  • 3 cups finely chopped green cabbage (about 1/3 of small head)
  • 2 onions, chopped
  • 4 cups low-sodium vegetable broth (we used chicken broth)
  • 2 cups water
  • 1 tablespoon tomato paste
  • 2 tablespoons apple cider vinegar
  • salt, pepper and sugar to taste
  • 1/4 cup chopped fresh dill
  • low fat sour cream or plain yogurt, optional

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Sydney, Frank and Ken prepared this delightful coloured soup adapted from Bon Appetit.

Prep time: 30 mins; Cook time: 40 mins; Serves 6

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Hamburger Stroganoff

Charlene prepared this recipe with extra-lean ground beef instead of sirloin strips which makes this comforting dish a bit more affordable and a bit lower in fat. When choosing recipes for the Seniors Cooking Club, Charlene always look out for low fat, low sodium, low sugar and low budget recipes. In fact, we should all adopt such healthy factors.

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Stroganoff is usually served over noodles but it is also delicious served over rice, or on toast for a simple dinner.

Ingredients

  • 1 tablespoon vegetable oil
  • 1 pound extra-lean ground beef
  • 1 large onion, chopped
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 pound mushrooms, sliced
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
  • 1/4 cup sherry, optional
  • 1 cup low-sodium chicken or beef broth
  • 1 teaspoon paprika
  • pinch of nutmeg
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground pepper
  • 1 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce (we substituted with soy sauce)
  • 1/2 cup low-fat sour cream (or full fat plain yogurt)

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Frances and Helmut paired up to make this comforting Hamburger Stroganoff.

Prep time: 20 mins; Cook time: 35 to 40 minutes; Serves 4 to 6.

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Guide to Winter Root Vegetables

Charlene introduced some winter root vegetables to the South Arm Cooking Club for Seniors for this meet. We often leave out vegetables that we are unfamiliar with when we do our groceries shopping. A session like this will help us to learn more about some of this winter root vegetables and hopefully we’ll try them in our next groceries shopping trip.

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For this session, Charlene picked four winter root vegetables, i.e. Rutabaga or Swede, Turnip, Celery Root or Celeriac and Parsnips. Can you tell which is which from the above picture?

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June, Christina and Chris Morris prepared and roasted the above winter root vegetables for everyone to try.

Ingredients

Here is what Charlene shared with us.

The first winter root vegetable introduced here is Rutabaga. It is also known as Swede or Yellow Turnip. Rutabagas are nutty, sweet and slightly peppery. They are delicious mashed with potatoes, cubed and roasted or boiled. When buying rutabagas, choose the smaller ones and they are less woody. The skin of rutabaga is quite tough to peel.

The second winter root vegetable is Turnip. The larger the turnip, the tougher and more strongly flavoured they become. Always choose the smallest turnips you can find at the grocer’s. Turnips can be creamed or made into an au gratin dish. It can be cubed in stews, glazed with carrots, or roasted but do no overcook them. Some cooks like to grate a turnip into their soups as a secret ingredient to give extra dept of flavour to the soup.

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The third winter root vegetable is celery root or Celeriac. This seemed to be the best favoured winter root vegetable among all the fours. It has a mild celery flavour to it. Celery root is the ugly stepdaughter of the vegetable world as it is rough and knobbly. It’s mild and aromatic flavour is delicious cooked or eaten raw. It is often cut into shoestrings and made into a salad with mayonnaise and mustard, remoulade. To prepare celery root, cut off the top and bottom of the root. Place a flat side on a cutting board and remove the tough peel in lengthwise strips.

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The last winter root vegetable introduced here is parsnips. This is my favourite. Parsnips resemble creamy-coloured carrots. They are sweet and complex. Their delightful flavour can be showcased on its own, whether roasted, in a creamy soup, or boiled and pureed to serve as a lush accompaniment to meats. Avoid gargantuan parsnips, as they tend to be woody in the middle.
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Winter Coleslaw

Minoo made this Winter Coleslaw to tie with the winter vegetable theme. Cabbage is a member of the cruciferous family of vegetables that contain potent anticancer components called indoles and isothiocyanates which can promote cancer cell suicide.

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This salad is called Winter Coleslaw as it is made with ingredients like purple cabbage and apples.

This recipe is adapted from Alive Magazine.

Prep time: 15 minutes; Serves 8.

Ingredients

  • 1/2 medium purple cabbage
  • 1/2 medium red onion
  • 1 large apple, peel left on, scrubbed well
  • 1/2 cup raw pumpkin seeds
  • 1/2 cup dried cranberries
  • 1/2 cup walnuts, broken

Dressing:

  • 1/2 cup apple cider vinegar
  • 1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 to 2 teaspoons honey

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p/s: honey missing from the picture.

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Herbed Potato Soup

This Herbed Potato Soup is Minoo’s favourite. It’s quick and easy and freezes well. Minoo always has homemade frozen food in her freezer. She said she does not know how to make small batches of food. She always has left over which she freezes them for busy day. Soup is one food that freezes well.

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This Herbed Potato Soup is definitely great for cold winter days. This recipe is adapted from www.allrecipes.com.

Prep time: 10 mins; Cook time: 20 mins; Serves 6.

Ingredients

  • 2 large potatoes, peeled and diced
  • 2 cups water or chicken broth
  • 1 large onion, chopped
  • 2 cloves of garlic, minced
  • 1/4 cup butter
  • 1/4 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon salt, or taste
  • 1/2 teaspoon dried thyme
  • 1/4 teaspoon dried rosemary, crushed
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper
  • 1 1/2 cups milk

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Whipped Carrots and Parsnips

Minoo likes to introduce new usage of vegetables which are not commonly used. Parsnip is a winter vegetable which is quite foreign to the Chinese community. I have been trying to find out the Chinese name for parsnip but without success. I even asked a grocer cashier who speaks Mandarin but she does not even know what is it called in Chinese. Anyone out there can help me?

The theme of this cooking session is toward using winter vegetables.

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This Whipped Carrots and Parsnips has a very unique flavour, from the parsnips. It makes an easier introduction to parsnips and it has a strong flavour to it. The carrots kind of mellow down the parsnip’s flavour but it’s still prominent.

Prep time: 15 minutes; Cook time: 25 minutes; Serves 6.

Ingredients

  • 1 1/2 pounds carrots, coarsely chopped
  • 2 pounds parsnips, peeled and cut into 1/2 inch pieces
  • 1/2 cup butter, diced and softened (or olive oil)
  • 1 pinch ground nutmeg
  • salt and pepper to taste

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Turkey Meatloaf with Feta and Sun-dried Tomatoes

The Richmond Community Kitchens resumed on the first week of January 2010. The Gilmore Park Church Community Kitchen was the first kitchen of the year. Minoo prepared 4 dishes to celebrate the starting of a new year.

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The first dish is Turkey Meatloaf with Feta and Sun-dried Tomatoes. This meatloaf is moist and colourful, white from the feta, red from the sun-dried tomatoes and green from the parsley.

Ingredients

  • vegetable cooking spray
  • 1/2 cup plain bread crumbs
  • 1/3 cup chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley
  • 1/4 cup garlic and herb-marinated sun-dried tomatoes
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 2 eggs, at room temperature, lightly beaten
  • 2 tablespoons milk
  • 1/2 cup crumbled feta cheese
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt or to taste
  • 1 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 pound ground turkey

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This recipe is adapted from www.allrecipes.com and it serves 5 to 6.

Updated: 28th July 2011: This recipe is adapted from Giada De Laurentiis of Food Network.com and it serves 5 to 6.

Prep time: 10 minutes

Cook time: 50 minutes

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