Winter Confetti Salad

First, an update of the baked goods sales fund raising at the South Arm Christmas Craft Fair on 16Nov 2013. A total of CAD913 was raised for the Richmond Food Bank. A great thank you for all the volunteers that help to make it happened.

Michelle shared a recipe from her blog in the South Arm Older Adults Cooking Club.


The Winter Confetti Salad is much easier to make if you have a food processor to shred the cabbage. Otherwise, grate the carrots and slice the cabbage really thin.

This recipe makes a big batch. Keep the dressing separate until you are ready to serve. The Winter Confetti Salad will keep for a few days in the refrigerator.


  • 1/2 head of green cabbage
  • 1/2 head of red cabbage
  • 2 carrots
  • 1/4 cup chopped flat leaf parsley


  • 1/2 cup olive oil
  • 1/4 cup white wine vinegar
  • 1/2 lemon, juiced
  • 2 tablespoons agave syrup or honey, or more to taste
  • 1 teaspoon Dijon mustard
  • 1/2 teaspoon sea salt
  • ground black pepper to taste


  • pumpkin seeds, sunflower seeds, dried cranberries or raisins




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Kobacha Soup

Michelle prepared a Kobacha Soup for the participants who helped to make all the baked goods for the Christmas Craft Fair.


The Kobacha Soup was really tasty with a hint of curry powder.


  • 1 Kobacha squash
  • 1 onion
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • melted butter or olive oil
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons to 1 tablespoon curry powder
  • 1 litre chicken or vegetable broth

Source: Michelle


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Banana Oat Chip Muffins

Michelle also shared another of her favourite muffin recipe, Banana Oat Chip Muffins for the South Arm Baked Goods Sale.


Mushy, blackened bananas from the freezer are always best for baking. Defrost them on the counter for a few hours ahead of time or microwave them for about a minute before baking.


  • 1 cup unbleached flour
  • 1 cup rolled oats (or quick oats)
  • 1/4 cup wheat bran
  • 1/4 cup flaxmeal
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 2 eggs
  • 1/4 cup vegetable oil
  • 1/4 cup milk
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla, optional
  • 3 bananas, mashed
  • up to 1 cup chocolate chips



Makes about 14 to 16 medium-sized muffins


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Crackled Gingersnaps

Another new addition to the South Arm Christmas Craft Fair baked goods sale is Crackled Gingersnaps.


If you like a thicker, more chewy cookie, leave it in a small ball; you don’t have to press it down with the bottom of a cup.


  • 2 1/2 cups unbleached flour
  • 2 teaspoons baking soda
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1 tablespoon ground cinnamon
  • 1 teaspoon ground ginger
  • 3/4 cup unsalted butter, at room temperature
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 1 egg
  • 1/4 cup molasses
  • 1/4 to 1/2 cup granulated sugar for coating


Makes 18 to 20 cookies


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Best Bran Muffins in South Arm Christmas Craft Fair Today

Today, South Arm Community Center is having it’s annual Christmas Craft Fair from 10am to 4pm. There are over 70 vendors registered for this fair.

As previous few years, the South Arm Older Adults helped to make baked goods for sale at the Christmas Craft Fair. The South Arm Community Center contributed CAD$250 for the ingredients and supplies for the baked good sales. All the proceed will go to the Richmond Food Bank.


The South Arm Older Adults baked cookies, muffins and brownies for the occasion.


One of cookies is the popular Chocolate Chip Coconut Oat Cookies which sold out quickly in last year’s event.


The South Arm Older Adults also baked 3 trays of the ever popular Decadent Brownies. Besides baked goods, there will be sale of sandwiches too. The baked good sale runs from 9am to 3pm or until sold out.


This year, Michelle added her Best Bran Muffins to the repertoire of the baked goods.


  • 3 cups wheat bran
  • 2 cups buttermilk (or substitute 2 tablespoons vinegar and enough milk to make 2 cups)
  • 3/4 cup to 1 cup dried cranberries or raisins
  • 1/4 cup vegetable oil
  • 1/4 cup brown sugar
  • 1/4 cup molasses
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 1/4 cup unbleached flour
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda


You can substitute the dried fruit with any fruit that you like. If you use frozen berries, toss them with 1 tablespoon flour and add them right at the end so it does not colour the entire muffin.


Makes 24


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Plum Kuchen

For dessert, Michelle shared her favourite recipe of Plum Kuchen at the South Arm Older Adults Cooking Club.


Michelle used Italian prune plums for this recipe as they are in season. Prune plum holds it’s shape well when baking with it.


  • 1 1/2 cups all purpose flour
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1 stick (8 tablespoons) unsalted butter, room temperature
  • 2/3 cup plus 1/4 cup sugar
  • 2 large eggs
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 1/2 teaspoon almond extract
  • 1/2 cup sour cream (not low fat for this recipe)
  • 5 large plums, halved, pitted, each cut into 8 wedges




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Cheesy Garlic Bread

Michelle also shared a Cheesy Garlic Bread to go with the Creamy Kale & Vegetable Soup.


This recipe is far better for you than the super market garlic bread that is loaded with preservatives and unhealthy fats. You can always substitute half olive oil for half the butter or just do olive oil if you prefer.


  • 1 baguette or ciabatta, horizontally cut in half
  • 1 stick (8 tablespoons) butter, softened or partially melted
  • 4 to 6 cloves garlic, minced
  • 2 tablespoons fresh parsley, finely chopped


  • 1 to 1.5 cups shredded cheese (any type you like, we used mozarella)


Source: this recipe is adapted from


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Winter Greens and Egg Salad

For salad, Michelle shared an Arugula and Egg Salad in the South Arm Older Adults Cooking Club.


According to, the bitter the greens, the better it is for health. Here is an excerpt from

Eating your greens is always detox-friendly. But even better are bitter greens, which must taste bitter in order to get the benefits. And that’s because when you taste bitter foods, like arugula, watercress and dandelion greens, they stimulate the liver to more effectively cleanse and detox the body.

Here’s why; Your taste bids signal what’s coming, and when you eat bitter greens, your gastrointestinal system gets the message to release hormones and digestive enzymes that increase bile flow, metabolize fats, and keep elimination moving smoothly. This helps your body carry the toxins out faster.

Bonus; Practitioners of traditional Chinese medicine also say that eating more bitter greens can help ease sugar cravings. That’s a detox win-win.


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From Garden to Table

For this South Arm Older Adults Cooking Club session, we harvested some produce from the community garden to be used in the kitchen.


Kale is a hardy plant which can last through the mild winter in Vancouver.


We also harvested potatoes from the garden. This is fun as you do not know what you are going to get.


Look at the above heart shape potato! (more…)

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“Any Fruit” Cake Bars

The South Arm Older Adults Cooking Club made a Pear Cake Bars for dessert. This is in line with adding more fruit in our diet idea.

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Michelle served the Pear Cake Bars with a scoop of frozen yogurt.

You can freeze small portions of this treat wrapped well in plastic wrap and foil.


  • 2 cups berries or chopped fruit (rhubarb, apples, peaches, pear, etc)
  • 1 tablespoon grated lemon or orange zest


  • 3/4 cup unsalted butter, softened
  • 1 1/2 cups granulated sugar
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 4 large eggs
  • 2 1/4 cups all purpose flour
  • 1 cup milk
  • icing sugar, if desired

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P/S: the pears are from Michelle’s backyard pear tree

Source: adapted from Guilt-free Sweet Treats


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