Tuesday, October 8, 2013

Happy fall yall!

Just wanted I share a picture I love and took recently. Let it inspire you to cook with pears this week and remind you of my delicious parsnip & pear purée. For all you Canadians out there it's the perfect soup to kick off your thanksgiving festivities, oh ya and its vegan in case you're into that sort of thing. Chow for now loves.

Tuesday, September 10, 2013

Quicky - juicing; liquid sunshine

So I'm really going to try and use my blogging app more often to communicate in a more timely manor. Hope you all had a lovely loooong weekend. There has been a chill in the air the last few days and it's really making me have the 'summertime sadness' if you know what I mean. I've been totally obsessed with that song the last few weeks and it's really started to take on meaning with the overcast weather we've been having in Toronto.  
This quicky is a delicious fresh pressed juice combination. I'm guessing you can also make this in your vitamix if you're that fancy gurl (inside joke). I can only vouch for my juicer. 
What you'll need:
Golden beets x2
Celery stalks x5
Cucumber 1 large 
Kale stems - as many as you've got 
Royal gala apples x2 
1 inch knob of ginger 
* serve on ice (makes enough for two so please share ;) 


Wednesday, September 4, 2013

Shana Tova to all my Heebs around the world

It's 5774 and I'm wishing only the best, sweetest and most delicious new year to all the Jews that stop by this blog. I saw this video a few days ago and have been patiently waiting to post it. I hope you enjoy it much as I do. Share it with the whole mishpucha if you do.
Much Love xoxo j.

Tuesday, August 20, 2013

Love, food and yoga!

Happy summer readers, friends, family, snobs and snobettes. I know I have totally abandoned you this summer but with good reason. I took some time off over the last few weeks to pursue my passion for yoga. After the last 10+ years of practicing I decided to take my interests to the next level. Yes I'm very proud and excited to report that I am officially a certified yoga teacher. Over the next few weeks I will be offering free classes downtown Toronto at the YogaSpace on Ossington,  so please contact me if you are interested. I will never give up my love and passion for cooking but rather focus the cooking and teaching I do in a more holistic way. I will be working on developing cooking and yoga workshop to focus on digestive issues and specialty diets. Please stay tuned and let me know if there is a specific type of workshop cooking or yoga that would intrigue you. Lots of love and gratitude to those of you who have supported me in my blog and all my life ventures. Namaste!

Thursday, July 4, 2013

Fattouch salad

Hey guys, Yes I'm blogging about another delicious salad this evening. I posted this pic a few days ago on my Instagram of a Middle Eastern inspired dinner and an old friend asked for the recipe. While I can't give out an exact recipe but i'll let you know what I did to make this yummy meal so you can create your own version of this super satisfying Fattouch salad. 

mixed baby greens (kale, chard, spinach, pea sprouts etc...)
green beans (cooked - I used that were simply sauteed with some shallots & garlic)
cherry tomatoes
mushrooms (raw and thinly sliced) 
feta cheese
calipo tuna (packed in olive oil) 
sweet onion (thinly sliced) 
pita chips (with za'atar and thyme) 
fresh mint leaves (rough chopped) 
minced raw garlic (one clove)
lemon juice (1/2 lemon)
dried oregano (pinch) 
pinch of Himalayan sea salt & black pepper 
splash of red wine vinegar 

FOR THE PITA CHIPS: Pre heat oven to 350.
Cut whole wheat pita into triangular strips, drizzle with grape seed oil (or whatever oil you like), add a pinch of sumac, za'atar, dried thyme, salt & pepper. Massage the spice and oil mixture in so that the majority of the pitas are well seasoned. Bake for 5 -10 mins until all the pita chips are well toasted. You will have to check on them and agitate the pan every few minutes so that they toast evenly. 

I promise I'm going to try and post more fresh and easy recipes like this over the summer. I know I've been dragging ass in the posting department. Chow for now yall.

Tuesday, May 28, 2013

Eric's broccoli salad

I know it's been a while since I last wrote a post. I'm sorry lovies but, I've been really focusing my energy on family, cooking and getting fit. This healthy recipe is simple, delicious and will leaving you feeling full and energized. It makes an excellent lunch or light dinner with minimal effort. I can not take any of the credit for this tasty dish as it's my amazing partners creation.  This is his all time favorite salad and he admits to having pretty much lived off of it before we met. Of course his version was using a pre made salad dressing from a bottle, which will just not do for this tomato snobs pallet. My version uses a simple balsamic & olive oil vinaigrette with a hint of raw minced garlic, which you can just toss in with the rest of the ingredients.

For the best tasting salad lightly blanch your broccoli (about one minute in boiling water then straight into a cold ice bath). Thinly slice your onions and put them in a bowl of cold water or vinegar until you are ready to toss everything together. This takes that pungent raw bite out of the onion that some people can find offensive, just be sure to rinse them before adding to the salad. I would recommend 1 large can of tuna or 2 small cans of Calipo (my favorite) per head of broccoli, 4 or 5 medium size mushrooms, 1/2 a small red onion and a few tbs of low fat feta cheese, 1 small clove of garlic, balsamic vinegar, good olive oil, salt and pepper to your taste. Please use the photo about as your guide for chopping and slicing.

Eric's broccoli salad has under 200 calories per serving, 10g of healthy fat, 14g lean protein and a ton of vitamin C and fiber. Serve this salad with fresh baguette and room temperature butter if you've got company, or some gluten free bread if you're being healthy like us ;)

Thursday, April 18, 2013

Black Bean Brownies - gluten free

Hello my lovies, 

For weeks my sister has been raving about the DAMY HEALTH website and these black bean brownies that she just can't get enough of. They are gluten free, full of potassium, iron, calcium and seriously satisfy your sweet tooth. These healthy treats are 5 grams of fat, & 120 calories & almost 4 grams of protein. I just love them as a pre or post work out snack.

PREP & BAKE: Pop all your ingredients accept the peanut butter into a blender or cuisinart and blend them up. Pour mixture into a square brownie pan lined with parchment paper then drop a few spoonfuls of room temperature peanut butter on top of the mixture and swirl with a toothpick. Bake for 20 - 25 minutes at 350. Let the brownies cool in the pan for a few minutes before removing. Then cut into 16 pieces. Enjoy!

Saturday, March 30, 2013

Three Day Juice Cleanse - Spring cleansing

 Howdy yall... this post has been haunting me. I've been trying to finish it for the last week and a half but between the Jewish holidays and finishing up my taxes and dealing with the barrage of hideous noises coming from the construction on my balcony, this post has been continuously tossed onto the back burner. Well today it all ends. I really want to tell you all about my experience on a three day juice cleanse, so here goes...
I've spent the better part of last week starving... I kid I was actually on a juice cleanse and I'm happy
to report while it was challenging, it was very doable.

There are many variations of a juice "fast" or cleanse. I would say that they key to motivating yourself and staying on track is to find the cleanse that works for you. I based mine on one from Dr. Oz with some desperately needed modifications I found after the first day of trying to choke down my "lunch" for almost two hours. I was warned by my best friend before hand that he and his gf had tried the same cleanse and that there were some pretty disgusting "meals" ahead of me.

I was actually advised by someone who shall remain nameless to stay home and take it easy while doing the cleanse, as they experienced extreme explosive diarrhea when doing a similar cleanse and suffered from terrible head aches. I will not confirm or deny said side effects as it really depends on your own body. I will admit to some strangely coloured stool, and a mild pre bed time head ache but it really wasn't as bad as I expected, mind you I'm not addicted to coffee or sugar, which can make your cleanse much more physically challenging.

Some of you are probably asking why a juice cleanse? Well, it's a great way to give your digestive system a break, to help eliminate toxins from your body and restore your immune system. As some of you loyal readers know I've done a bunch of food based cleanses in the past however this is the first time I've done a juice cleanse. Any cleanse takes some effort and a lot of prepping in advance. This cleanse was fairly easy as long as you are diligent about drinking your next "meal" within three hours of the last one.

In the week following the cleanse I ate a vegan, gluten free diet. Its important to start slow so you don't shock the system with eating too much food or foods that are too difficult to digest. As much as I love eating meat I really enjoyed eating a vegan diet. I never felt sick after a meal and had absolutely  no stomach aches - which is something I felt a lot before doing the cleanse.  Since then I have started to incorporate meat a few times a week and dairy in the form of Greek yogurt and goats milk cheeses, but in very small amounts. The only time I've had a stomach ache was Monday night, which was the first night of Passover - I ate a few bites of a matzo ball soup which I'm positive had some sort of bullion powder or cube, since I felt bloated and awful very shortly after eating it. That stuff just kills my stomach and contains MGS which is terrible for you. One of the benefits to doing the cleanse is being able to to reintroduce food slowly so you can have a better understanding of what foods effect you negatively.

Some of the modifications I made were combining juicing with blending, adding/replacing some creamy/fatty fruits, and instead of the additional snack smoothy I made a fresh vegetable/ fruit juice using  fruits and vegetables not listed on the sheet below. I did not work out during the cleanse but in retrospect I could have easily included a work out in the afternoon. You will need a good blender or magic bullet to complete this cleanse, a juicer is a bonus.
TIP: juice your celery, kale stems and cucumber.
TIP: add 1/2 an avocado or banana to your lunch smoothy and heat you coconut oil before blending.
TIP: Replace one of your daily servings of flax seeds with chia seeds.
TIP: snack juice using beets, carrots, apple, ginger etc...

Happy cleansing, Passover & Easter to you all. xo

Thursday, March 7, 2013

Vietnamese salad rolls - Gỏi Cuốn

Oh hello lovely readers. I know I've been absent for a few weeks, but work has been crazy and my free time has been pretty much tied up with trying to get at least 7 hours of sleep a night, going to the gym oh ya and eating a few meals here or there. Yes I'm very dramatic this morning - you love it. Anyway what I've lacked in blogging last month I've certainly made up for with cooking. My callus index finger from where I hold my chefs knife is proof, not to mention the burn marks on my hand from where I sizzled them on the BBQ by accident about a week ago. I'm so glad to finally be able to sit down and write after this crazy month. 

Today I'm going to tell you about a simple Vietnamese dish that takes fresh shredded vegetables and transforms them into a  refreshing tasty salad wrapped up in a rice paper roll. I have to admit I rarely order these in a restaurant because I usually find them extremely boring and bland. Many Vietnamese restos skimp out and fill the rolls with iceberg lettuce and rice paper noodles. Making these at home you can stuff them with whatever you want, shredded chicken, poached shrimp, apples, mango, carrots, peppers you name it.

INGREDIENTS: I'll leave this up to you and your taste buds. This list is to give you some ideas. The only thing to keep in mind is that everything should be finely julienned (shredded).

PREP: Very thinly slice your veg using a sharp chefs knife or a mandolin. Fill a large bowl with warm water for the rice paper rolls. You can make your dipping sauces well in advance I like a chili hoisin sauce or a peanut vinaigrette. I'll post recipes for those sauces at the end of this post. 

1 - Place rice paper in the bowl of warm water until soft (about 30 seconds), pat it dry on a a clean kitchen towel, then flatten out on a cutting board. If you want to make mini rolls like the ones above slice the rice paper into four pieces (like a pizza).
2 - If you are using shrimp slice them in half lengthwise and place them pink side down in the center of the rice paper.
3 - stack your veggies on top of each other in layers for aesthetic purposes or just toss in any of the ingredients you like except for your green herbs ie. mint, cilantro, basil etc...
4 - Fold the sides towards the center, then the bottom.
5 - Place your herbs on top of that bottom folded flap
6 - Roll the top flap over the herbs

CHILI HOISIN SAUCE: Whisk everything together
Combine 1/2 cup of hoisin sauce with 1-2 Tbs of sambal
1/2 tbs minced ginger, and a spritz or splash of orange, lemon or lime juice. 

PEANUT VINAIGRETTE: Whisk everything together adding the water in last until you reach desired consistency
2 cups smooth peanut butter
2 limes, zest and juice
2 tangerines or mandarins, zest & juice
2 tbs honey
1/4 cup light soy sauce or tamari
1 tbs sambal
1 tbs rice wine vinegar 
splash of fish sauce - optional 
drizzle of sesame oil 
1/4 - 1/2 cup of water 

Garnish with chopped toasted peanuts, black sesame and fresh herbs. Enjoy!


Friday, February 8, 2013

Saké-too-me! Cucumber ginger sakétini

I'm wishing all those Canadians home from work and school today a very happy snow day. I'm enjoying this lovely weather from the comfort of my in home office. Yes my life is pretty good! This is a requested post coming from a client of The Fooding Company who I recently chef'ed a dinner party for. I created a signature cocktail for the Asian themed menu. We served the very famous Korean charred beef & slaw dish you all know and love as well as some other delicious dishes that have yet to be blogged about. This cocktail is refreshing and super delicious.  

For those of you scratching your heads thinking "what the heck is saké" it's actually a delicious fermented rice (alcoholic) beverage . Most non Asians think saké is rice wine, which isn't technically true. Wine and saké have very different fermenting processes. Wine is created by fermenting sugar and saké is a brewing process much like beer, but still it is unique only to it's self.

Cucumber ginger Saketini: The break down is pretty easy: 1spoonful of cucumber ginger puree, 1 part plum wine, 2 parts sake, top off with ginger ale (Canada Dry brand is the best) add a spritz of fresh lime juice & garnish with a cucumber slice. - Follow the order to create the perfect layered cocktail.

Plum wine
Coarse filter sweet sake (pink bottle)
cucumber/ ginger puree
ginger ale
lime juice
cucumber slices

Peel and blend 1 English cucumber along with 2 inch knob of fresh ginger, 1tsp of sugar - strain 1/2 of the mixture (I like to leave a little bit of texture, it goes nice with the creaminess of the coarse filter sake).  

Enjoy your weekend everyone and perhaps a tasty cocktail... 乾杯 (kan-pai) which means dry the glass or cheers ;)

Wednesday, January 30, 2013

Vote for me!

Howdy 'yall. I just wanted to let you know about a food photo contest I recently entered and ask if you would please check it out and vote for me. I do warn you the photo is supper yummy looking so try not to drool while you vote. 
Happy humpday ;)

Monday, January 28, 2013

Superfood breakfast yogurt - start your morning off with a bang

Good morning! Today's post is all about my new obsession, a healthy breakfast combination that's packed with SEVEN superfoods. What are super foods? They are healthy, nutritious foods with high nutrient or phytochemical content. They are whole foods, mostly raw food and unrefined. This combination can be made quickly and enjoyed any time of the day. You can use whatever berries you like, I happen to be obsessed with these sunny gooseberries, so that's what I used.

1. Golden berries - Also known as cape gooseberries. These bright, citrusy berries are high in protein, packed with vitamin C, A, and B12, it's a good source of carotenoids, which may help protect against cancer and heart disease. If a tomato, strawberry and pineapple had a baby it would be this delicious fruit.

2. Hemp hearts - Are a balanced source of plant based protein, essential fats, & vitamins such as omega 3 & 6. They are great for increasing energy, weight loss and can improve digestion. Hemp seeds are an excellent food for diabetics because it aids in regulating blood sugar by keeping insulin in check. Hemp hearts or shelled hemp seeds taste kinda of nutty, they are great on salads or sprinkled on whole grain toast with nut butter.  

3. Black chia seeds - Also called salvia, are crunchy poppy seeds looking thing. If you're thinking I wonder they are the same as chia pets, then you are bang on. Chia comes in black, white and speckled brown, although nutritional research has found that the black variety have 13% - 15% more antioxidants then the other varieties. Chia is a great source of omega 3 & 6 which can lower blood pressure. They are an anti inflammatory food which makes them easy to digest and really helps to keep your bm's healthy and regular. These powerful seeds are also good for helping to detoxify the body, increase metabolism and improve memory. They do not need to be ground to extract the health benefits so go ahead and toss them into your next smoothy, bowl of cereal or on top of a salad. 

4. Bee pollen - Is really one of natures best kept secrets. These sweet little nuggets have been used in treating asthma, digestive issues, anemia, fatigue, depression, acne, hemorrhoids, obesity, rheumatism and arthritis - wow. They are also pretty good at helping to heal the common cold and to sooth a sore throat. 

5. Plain Greek yogurt -If you've never tried the stuff it's amazing! It has about twice the protein, has less carbohydrates and it's lower in sodium then regular yogurt not to mention it's much more creamy and luxurious.The only down side is that it is lower in calcium.

6. Cinnamon - A spice known and loved by all. Cinnamon can regulate blood sugar, energy level and your mood. It reduces LDL cholesterol (the bad stuff) and can reduce the pain linked to arthritis, and pms by regulating hormones. It contains fiber, calcium, iron and magnese.

7. Maple syrup -Aside from being lower is sugar then honey, maple syrups is an antioxidant power house. It contains enzymes that can reduce inflammation which makes it a great choice for people who suffer from inflammatory diseases such as diabetes, cancer, osteoporosis, and Alzheimer's. It can settle digestive issues and help with muscle recovery. It's very high in magnese which helps the body repair cell damage within the muscles. Even though pure maple syrup contains a healthy dose of zinc, iron, calcium and potassium doesn't mean you can eat it all the time - it is still sugar!

1/2 cup berries
1 serving plane Greek yogurt
1 tbs Black chia
1.5 tbs hemp hearts
1 tbs bee pollen 
1 tbs maple syrup
sprinkle of cinnamon 

Happy Monday yall. xo JVP

Friday, January 18, 2013

Stuck in the middle of the Puerto Vallarta airport

Hola mi amigos and amigas. I'm just checking in to say a quick hello while I'm stuck sitting in the middle of the PVR airport. My flight is delayed and I'm sitting miles away from my gate so I can score some free wifi and keep myself amused for the time being. I hope everyone had a lovely week. I know I did enjoying lots of fresh seafood, sun and sand. I'll upload some yummy photos next week when I have a chance to edit through everything. For now I'll leave you with a little collage teaser from my Instagram. Which for some reason is banned at the airport. #nobueno there goes the next 20 minutes of amusement. I guess I'll have to play angry birds instead.
Chow for now

Ps. After all that I can't even publish this until I get home. Wah wah wah.... Sad face 

Friday, January 11, 2013

Happy new year peeps... See ya in a week

Howdy y'all. I know I'm late on the New Years wishes but I've been sick in bed like most of Toronto with a terrible flu. I hope everyone had a delicious time ringing in the new year. I just wanted to say I quick good bye or adios since I'm off to my home away from home Mexico! Wooohoooo. Waiting in the airport for my flight to board. I've got a purse full of trashy magazines and a turkey and mustard sandwich on multigrain bread & chickpea salad from Heirloom cafe. It actually looks pretty good. I also picked up a bag of my fav gourmet popcorn 479• (black truffle & white aged cheddar) & a limonatta. Traveling in style. Chow for now Toronto. Xoxo