At Project CHEF, we believe food is too important to waste. Challenge yourself the next time you notice an ingredient or two that you might be tempted to toss. Can it be used to create something new? It makes leftovers so much more fun, and you might end up with a delicious dessert out of it like this one!
This recipe is Project CHEF’s version of a classic Chinese dish, Kung Pao Chicken. Traditionally, peanuts play a main role. In this recipe though, peanuts are optional so that even those that are allergic to peanuts can enjoy this dish. In food and cooking, balance is a word that comes up often. It is important to have a balanced meal which means consuming the right proportions of food groups to give your body all the nutrients it needs to grow & maintain good health. In this recipe, let’s focus on balanced flavours. Think about lemonade, if it’s just lemon juice it would be likely be too sour to drink. However, when sugar is added for sweetness the result is a balanced beverage. Many Asian dishes are often created by juggling salty, sweet, sour and spicy flavours to create a balanced taste. This recipe is a good example.
Yield: 4 – 5 servings Preparation Time: About 20 minutes Cooking Time: About 15 minutes
Sharing meals around a table is one of our favourite things to do. In Project CHEF, when it’s time to dine together, we share conversation as well as food. We assign Table Talk Topics everyday to get the conversation going. It’s interesting how we can start talking about a favourite meal then before you know it we’re talking about something else. That’s how conversation works!
Another book we love is The Sandwich Swap, by Her Majesty Queen Rania Abdullah of Jordan (with Kelly DiPucchio and illustrated by Tricia Tusa, Disney Hyperion Books, 2010). It’s not often you read a book written by a Queen! Queen Rania wrote this book about her experiences as a child. The Sandwich Swap shows us that though we’re all different, friendship can see beyond differences to focus on what we have in common.
This is a decadent dessert recipe you can prepare in a flash. The bulk of the time preparing this dish will be spent waiting patiently while the brownies bake. A few reasons to bake your own brownies rather than to buy them from a store is you know exactly what ingredients are going in, they are fresher, and the fruit of your labour always tastes better. Tasty treats like brownies and cookies often come as a packaged product in stores. In order for these packaged treats to remain tasty and edible while they sit on the supermarket shelves, the manufacturers often use preservatives & additives that are otherwise unnecessary when making your own at home.
Recipes let us know about how much they will make in the Yield. The yield is usually included near the beginning of the recipe.The yield will sometimes tell you how many it will make, for example 24 cookies, and sometimes it will tell you how much it will make, for example 1 litre of soup. But what happens if you need more or less of a recipe? Chefs convert recipes all the time so that they can make the amount that is needed.
An Apple A Day Keeps The Doctor Away Have you ever heard of this expression? An apple is a fruit and is not only delicious, but packs a punch in nutrition as well. Fruit is an important part of a healthy eating pattern. It contains nutrients such as fibre, vitamins and minerals that are needed to fuel our bodies and stay healthy. Technically speaking, a fruit is a seed-bearing part of a flowering plant that is edible. Fruit is fun to explore with its many flavours, shapes, textures and sizes. Try to eat a wide variety of colours to give your body all the nutrients it needs. The term used to describe this is ‘Eat the Rainbow’.
Let’s see how our first trial growing microgreens turned out. There are so many ways to record the progress of your sprouts but the key to growing microgreens is daily observation and learning to look closely. How damp (or dry) is your soil? Is this the right location? Is there enough light & warmth? Are all the seeds germinating and growing at the same rate or are some slower? Below are some progress pictures to help you know what to expect. We will also show you when and how to harvest. For those of you who had some trouble, we have also included some troubleshooting tips.
Today we are making delicious savoury spinach pies, or Spanakopites in Greek. The dough we need for this recipe is called phyllo pastry. While it is possible to make at home, making phyllo is an art and we can leave this to the professionals. When working with phyllo pastry, your preparedness, organizational skills & cleanliness will be of the utmost importance. Let’s heat up the oven and cook some pies!
Yield: 6 pies Preparation Time: About 35 minutes Baking Time: About 30 minutes @ 350 F
This delicious Tomato Soup recipe comes from Caren McSherry, owner of Gourmet Warehouse, who is a long-time supporter of Project CHEF.
The main ingredient in a Tomato Soup ought to be tomatoes, right? While that may be the case, you don’t necessarily need to use fresh tomatoes. In today’s recipe, we are using canned tomatoes. It is possible to make a delicious & nutritious meal from ingredients in your pantry. If using canned or packaged foods, it is important to read the list of ingredients. In Canada, by law, anything that comes in a package has to tell you what’s in it. The ingredients in our can of tomatoes are organic tomatoes & organic tomato juice.
Yield: About 4 – 5 servings Preparation time: About 30 minutes
Cooking Time: About 40 minutes
How do we know what we should eat each day? Canada’s Food Guide guides people to eat colourful, flavourful and wholesome food every day. The Food Guide is based on science and it tells us to be sure to eat food from three food groups to get the different nutrition our body needs to grow and stay healthy. Let’s take a look at Canada’s Food Guide and then we’ll use our Food Journal to track the colours of the rainbow we eat in a week.
Food brings people together, no matter how old or young they are. At Project CHEF we cook with kids, teachers, parents, grandparents, aunties and uncles, and volunteers. We have also cooked with seniors from Tapestry Retirement Community at Wesbrook Village. We believe that when people come together in the kitchen there is always an opportunity to learn from each other.
Collard greens are a member of the Brassica Oleracea family of veggies that include cabbage, broccoli and kale. This dark green leaf grows right here in BC and you often find them at the farmers’ markets. They’re high in vitamins A and C and they can be eaten raw or cooked. In this recipe we roll up herby scrambled eggs inside a big, raw leaf like a burrito. If you don’t have collard greens, can you think of some other large, leafy vegetables to use? You can even roll the eggs up in a flatbread.
Yield: 3 wraps Preparation Time: About 10 minutes Cooking Time: About 3 minutes
BC is blessed with a bounty of good food grown right on our doorstep. We get to enjoy what our farmers grow and producers make throughout the year. Many of these ingredients we recognize right away but others may cause us to pause, look at carefully and do a little research to find out what they are and how can we enjoy eating them.
Here’s a crunchy snack that includes ingredients from the three food groups: Fruit and Veggies, Protein and Whole Grains. Easy to make and as much fun to make as eat. If little fingers are doing the cutting, be sure to have all hands on deck for supervision.
There are over 8000 different types of apples in the world and each apple has a different flavour. Try this recipe with different types of apples. Take your time and use your senses while preparing the apples. How would you describe the flavour: sweet or sour? How about the texture: crunchy or soft? How about the juiciness: juicy or dry? Close your eyes and smell the apples. Do they smell the same?
Fresh Tomato Salsa is amazing in late summer when local tomatoes are showing up at markets and in stores. But even now in the spring, it brings a bit of brightness and a splash of summer. In Spanish, Pico de Gallo literally means beak of the rooster. Why do you think they might call salsa “the beak of the rooster”?
Yield:About 1 cup Preparation Time:About 15 minutes
Summer Black Bean Dip is a favourite recipe of the Project CHEF team. Not only is it delicious, but it’s also fun to make. Practice your mashing skills using a fork and your hands. Test your knife skills by precisely cutting onion into super thin slices. Serve it with chips for a snack or with tacos, burritos or quesadillas. We added some feta crumbles to yum it up. See our guacamole and tomato salsa recipes to make this a meal.
Yield: About 1 cup
Preparation Time: About 20 minutes
This is one of our favorite ways to spice up a Friday night dinner when we are all too tired to be fancy in the kitchen but want our food to feel like a celebration. You can use guacamole in many ways including as a dip, spread on toast or tostadas and serving it with tacos or quesadillas. This recipe is often one that kids make again and again after completing our classroom program.
Yield:About ¾ cup (175mL) Preparation Time:About 10 minutes
Couscous is wheat semolina flour formed into tiny, tiny balls. It’s commonly served in North African, Moroccan, and Algerian cuisine. It is very fast to cook and can be used as an alternative to rice or pasta. Cous Cous can be served with curry or stew, as a side dish, in a salad or as a main meal by adding some protein and vegetables. Pair our Cous Cous with our Tofu & Veggie Kebabs for a delicious, easy, healthy meal. In this recipe, we have used a whole wheat cous cous for extra fibre and nutrition.