Root Vegetables Soup

The South Arm Community Kitchen met again on a Wednesday. We made a winter soup with various seasonal root vegetables.


This simple, robust and cold weather soup can be made with almost any mixture of root vegetables you can get on hand. We made this with carrots, parsnips, celery root, turnips, rutabaga and sweet potatoes. Winter gourd, potatoes and squash are great for this soup too.


We served the Mixed Root Vegetables Soup with a 3 chicken salad of 3 different flavours.


  • 6 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • 1 large onion or 2 leeks (white and light green part only), chopped
  • 2 to 3 celery stalks, diced
  • 3 cloves garlic, finely chopped
  • 3 rosemary or thyme stalks (or 1 teaspoon dried ones)
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 3 1/2 pounds mixed root vegetables (carrots, parsnips, celery root, turnip, rutabaga, sweet or regular potatoes), peeled and diced
  • 1 teaspoon of sea salt or to taste
  • 1/4 teaspoon black pepper or to taste
  • juice of 1/2 lemon, or more for serving
  • extra virgin olive oil
  • chili flakes, optional


Source: South Arm Community Kitchen

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Homemade Kefir (or Milk Kefir)

Minoo brought her homemade milk kefir to share in the South Arm Community Kitchen. Milk kefir is a probiotic yogurt-like drink.


Kefir is a fermented milk drink made with kefir grains. Kefir is a source of calcium, iron, vitamin B12, etc.


Minoo demonstrated to us how to make homemade kefir. First she strain the kefir with a stainless steel strainer. The kefir milk taste like yogurt drink, i.e. a little sour with a yeasty smell. The longer you leave the kefir grains in the milk, the more sour the milk will be.


Rinse the kefir grains under cold running water.


Kefir grains are symbiotic culture of bacteria and yeasts. They are alive. They will grow as you continue the process of making the kefir milk. You can share the excess kefir grains with your friends.

The probiotics in kefir promote a healthy digestive tract and a healthy immune system. They are the good bacteria in our guts.


Minoo gave us a little kefir grains to bring home to make our own kefir. Just place the kefir grains in a clean jar and add milk to it. Close the jar and give it a few shakes. Leave the jar in room temperature overnight or up to 24 hours and repeat the process of straining, rinsing and restart fermentation with a new batch of milk.

Minoo reminded us not to place the kefir grains in the fridge for too long as the cold will kill the kefir grains. If you cannot attend to the kefir grains for a day or two, it will be alright to place in the fridge, but any longer than that, you have to find someone to baby sit it.

Minoo, thank you for sharing.

Tender Steak Roll filled with Vegetables

The South Arm Community Kitchen made the main dish last as it is to be consumed hot.


The main dish we made was Tender Steak Roll filled with Vegetables. This can be grilled or pan fried.


  • 8 thin slices sirloin or flank steak
  • Extra virgin olive oil
  • salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • Rosemary, chopped and crushed
  • 1 red pepper, sliced into thin strips
  • 1 medium zucchini, sliced into thin strips
  • 1 medium onion, halved and thinly sliced
  • a few mushrooms, cut into thin slices

For the Rosemary Balsamic Glaze

  • 1 teaspoon extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 large clove garlic, minced
  • 1/4 cup dark balsamic vinegar
  • 2 tablespoons dry red wine
  • 2 teaspoons sugar
  • Rosemary
  • 1/4 cup vegetable stock


Source: South Arm Community Kitchen

Serves 8

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Stacked Potato Gratin

The South Arm Multicultural Community Kitchen made a side dish of Stacked Potato Gratin.


Minoo shared this recipe of Stacked Potato Gratin just in time for Thanksgiving as we met the week before Thanksgiving.


  • 2 kilograms large potatoes (about 5)
  • 1 cup grated Parmesan cheese
  • 1/4 cup olive oil
  • 2 tablespoons chopped fresh thyme or 1 tablespoon dried ones
  • 4 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons salt or to taste
  • 1/2 teaspoon freshly grated nutmeg or ground nutmeg
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground black pepper
  • paprika for sprinkling on top, optional


Source: South Arm Community Kitchen

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Best Bran Muffins

The South Arm Multicultural Community Kitchen started off with a sweet recipe first.


This high fiber Best Bran Muffin is freezer friendly.


  • 1 1/2 cups flour
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons baking soda
  • 2 cups ground wheat bran
  • 1 1/2 cups buttermilk
  • 1 cup water
  • 1/2 cup sugar (or honey)
  • 1/4 cup molasses
  • 2 eggs
  • 2 1/2 tablespoons oil (or coconut oil, melted)
  • 1 cup raisins


Source: South Arm Community Kitchen

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Chocolate Beet Muffins

The South Arm Multicultural Community Kitchen made some muffins with beets too.


The beets gave this Chocolate Beet Muffin a reddish hue.


  • 2 medium sized beets cooked and pureed
  • 1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 2 tablespoons cocoa powder
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1/4 cup buttermilk or milk
  • 1/2 cup light brown sugar
  • 1/4 cup granulated sugar
  • 1/4 cup unsalted butter, room temperature
  • 1/4 cup vegetable oil
  • 1 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips


Source: South Arm Community Kitchen

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Beet Soup

Another Fall vegetable being cooked up in the South Arm Multicultural Community Kitchen is Beet.


Beets have many health benefits which include high in vitamins and minerals like the B Vitamin, folate, manganese, potassium and copper. They are also high in dietary fiber. Beets also contain a healthy amount of magnesium, phosphorous, vitamin C and vitamin B6.


  • 4 tablespoons vegetable oil
  • 2 large onions, chopped
  • 4 cloves of garlic, minced
  • 2 tablespoons fresh ginger, minced (or 1 tablespoon ground ginger)
  • 4 to 5 small potatoes, chopped
  • 4 large beets, chopped
  • 16 to 20 cups of vegetable or chicken stock
  • 2 tablespoons curry powder or paste
  • 2 tablespoons cumin


Source: South Arm Community Kitchen

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Roasted Veggies with Avocado Dressing

The South Arm Multicultural Community Kitchen came together for another cooking session.


We made Roasted Veggies with Avocado Dressing. This is a vegetarian meal which uses fall vegetables like squash and Brussels srpouts.


  • 3 sweet peppers, multi-colour, roughly chopped
  • 1 pound butternut squash
  • 1 pound Brussels sprouts, hulled and halved if they are big
  • 2 teaspoons dried Oregano
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon ground black pepper
  • 3 tablespoons olive oil
  • 4 ounces mixed greens


Avocado Dressing Ingredients

  • 3 avocados
  • 3 small garlic cloves
  • Juice of 2 limes or lemons
  • 1/2 cup olive oil
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground black pepper


Source: South Arm Community Kitchen

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Mandarin Loaf Cake

The South Arm Multicultural Community Kitchen made a Mandarin Loaf Cake for dessert to end our meal.



  • 3 Mandarins
  • 3 eggs
  • 1/3 cup oil or melted butter
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 1 1/4 cup to 1 1/2 cup flour (depending on how juicy is the Mandarins)
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • zest of 1 Mandarin


Source: South Arm Community Kitchen

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Okra, Corn and Tomatoes Stir Fry

The South Arm Multicultural Community Kitchen made a stir fry vegetable dish to be served with basmati rice.


This Okra, Corn and Tomatoes Stir Fry is Minoo’s favourite okra recipe.


Minoo shared a remedy of drinking okra water which is believed to help lessen diabetes symptoms. Okra water is made by putting sliced okra in warm water and soak them overnight.



  • 4 tablespoons vegetable oil
  • 8 ounces fresh okra, halved lengthwise
  • salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 1/2 cups corn kernels (from 2 large ears)
  • 2 pounds fresh tomatoes, cut into 8 wedges each
  • 2 ounces slab bacon, cut into large dice (optional)
  • 1 medium white onion, thinly sliced
  • 1 large garlic clove, minced
  • extra virgin olive oil for drizzle


Source: South Arm Community Kitchen

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