Blog / Recipes

Fluffy Orange Pancakes

 

Fluffy Orange Pancakes

My family's favourite recipe! Perfect for brunch, Mother's Day or a weekend at the cottage! If you have any leftovers, freeze them between sheets of parchment paper.
Course Breakfast, Brunch, Mother's Day
Servings 4

Ingredients
  

  • 1 egg
  • 1 1/2 cups milk
  • 3/4 cups orange juice
  • 2 Tbsp butter, melted
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1 1/2 Tbsp orange zest
  • 2 cups all-purpose flour or whole wheat flour (or a mix of both)
  • 2 Tbsp sugar
  • 4 tsp baking powder
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • butter or oil for cooking

Instructions
 

  • In a large bowl, whisk egg and milk. Add orange juice, melted butter, vanilla extract and orange zest. Whisk to combine.
  • In another bowl, stir together flour, sugar, baking powder and salt. Add to the orange juice mixture and stir just enough to moisten.
  • In a large skillet, melt butter or heat oil over medium-high heat, to coat the pan.
  • Pour in 1/4 to 1/3 cup of batter (for small pancakes) or 1/2 cup batter for large pancakes. Cook for about 1 1/2 to 2 minutes or until small bubbles begin to appear and the pancake begins to set. The bottoms should be golden. Flip the pancake and cook for another 30 seconds to 1 minute or until set.
  • Enjoy with your favourite toppings! Makes 12-16 small pancakes or 8 large pancakes.

What are pink strawberries?

A cluster of pink strawberries with an overlay of Sue's headshot and the words "What are pink strawberries?"

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Have you seen these little pink strawberries at Costco or your local grocery store?

They look like underripe strawberries, but they’re not. These little gems are actually pineberries – which is a fusion of the words “pineapple” and “strawberry” although there isn’t any pineapple in them. In fact, the pineberry belongs to the strawberry family and is a cross between the strawberries native to North America (Fragaria virginiana) and strawberries native to Chile (Fragaria chiloensis). Inside, the flesh is white. You may also see these cute little berries called pineberry strawberries or hula pineberries.

What do pineberries taste like?

Pineberries have a softer and creamier texture than a red strawberry. There are subtle aromas and flavours of pineapple (thus the name pineberry), pear and apricot.

What about nutrition?

Both pineberries and strawberries contain vitamin C, folate, fibre and potassium. Strawberries will have higher levels of “anthocyanins” – which are the healthy plant compounds that give strawberries their beautiful red colour. Since they’re more rare than red strawberries, pineberries tend to be more expensive.

How to eat pineberries?

Ripe pineberries will have a blush pink colour and bright red seeds. Eat pineberries the same way you would strawberries! Add them to your yogurt bowl, toss into a salad or add a handful to a snack board.

Will you try them? Have you tried them? Tell me what you think in the comments!

 

My interview with Chef Bruno Feldeisen – Pastry Chef & Judge on Great Canadian Baking Show

Chef Bruno standing at a bookstore and holding his cookbook

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

What an honour and joy to interview Chef Bruno Feldeisen!

You may know him as a celebrated pastry chef and judge on CBC’s Great Canadian Baking Show!

In my one-on-one interview with Chef Bruno, we talk about his cookbook Baking with Bruno, his baking career, his journey with anxiety and what’s next.

A few memorable quotes from the Chef:

  • “The idea of the my cookbook is to create memories in the kitchen, spend time together and have a good time…it’s not about the end product, it’s about the process!”
  • “The kitchen is the heartbeat of my house.”
  • Advice for bakers: “It’s all about trial and error!”

Click on the image below to watch or check out the interview on my YouTube channel! Enjoy this special conversation!

Chef Bruno is standing on set at the Great Canadian Baking Show

 

Healthy Recipes for the Whole Family

Two glasses of berry smoothie, each with a paper straw.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

As parents, sometimes we sacrifice our own taste buds to please our kids’ preferences. But we don’t have to! Here are 2 easy recipes for everyone in the family to enjoy!

 

3 pizzas made on naan. One pizza has red and green peppers; one pizza has ham and pineapple; one pizza has olives, roasted red peppers, artichokes, red onion and feta cheese.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Naan Pizzas

Get the kids in the kitchen! Kids are more likely to try the foods that they’ve helped to make. Get all of the pizza ingredients ready and each person can make their own.

Ingredients:

  • Naan (regular sized and / or mini; or use flatbread, tortilla wraps, English muffin or bagel)
  • Tomato / Pasta sauce
  • Mozzarella cheese
  • Feta cheese
  • Your favourite toppings: e.g. red peppers, green peppers, ham, diced pineapple, olives, artichokes, sliced red onion, roasted red peppers

Directions:

  1. Spread 1-2 Tbsp of tomato sauce on each naan.
  2. Sprinkle on Mozzarella cheese.
  3. Add your favourite toppings.
  4. Bake at 375 F for about 5-10 minutes or until the Mozzarella cheese has melted.

 

2 glasses of berry smoothies, each with a paper straw.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Banana Berry Smoothies

We’ve all had smoothies with banana and berries. But this version also calls for cauliflower which adds a creaminess to the smoothie! Give it a try!

Ingredients:*

  • ½ banana (fresh or frozen)
  • 1½-2 cups strawberries (fresh or frozen)
  • ¼ cup pineapple chunks (fresh or frozen)
  • ¼ cup frozen cauliflower (raw; fresh or frozen; optional)
  • ¾ cup Greek yogurt (plain or flavoured; more or less)
  • ½ cup milk (more or less)

Directions:

  1. Put all of the ingredients in a blender. Blend until smooth.
  2. Add more Greek yogurt to thicken the smoothie, or more milk to thin it out.

Makes 4 servings.

*Notes: At least one of the fruits or the cauliflower should be frozen. I use vanilla flavoured Greek yogurt.

 

Food & Nutrition Trends for 2022

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Food prices, sustainability and the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic will be the key influences on our eating habits and practices this year. Here’s our roundup of the top 10 food and nutrition trends to watch in 2022.

1. Pantry to Plate

Who can forget the sourdough baking craze in 2020? The cooking and baking skills we built at the beginning of the pandemic will stick with us. With food prices expected to rise 5 to 7% this year, an average family of four can expect to pay an extra $966 in groceries this year according to the annual Canada’s Food Price Report. Consumers will be looking for creative ways to use up those ingredients at the back of the pantry and fridge. What’s more, this trend will help to tackle food waste in our kitchens.

2. Streamlined Menus

Look for smaller menus as restaurant operators are adapting with potential supply chain snags. They’ll be innovating with local ingredients already on hand and opting for simple prix fixe menus rather than bringing in new SKUs. Food and Wine magazine reports that with rising food prices, chefs will be taking creative approaches to minimize waste and streamlining their menus to effectively manage their costs.

3. Plant based – The Next Generation

While sales of plant-based burgers appear to be declining, food giants such as Unilever are still committed to offering plant-based options to help reduce the environmental impact of the global food chain. In fact, the company is calling for public health strategies that facilitate the transition to a balanced diet with more diverse nutrient-dense plant foods through consumer education, food fortification and possibly supplementation. Insights from the 2022 Trend Report by Nourish suggests that there are gaps in plant-based categories like snacks, desserts and bakery. Keep your eyes out for novel plant-based ingredients and offerings.

4. Bye Bye Plastics

­Not only are sustainability and climate concerns driving our food choices, but they’re also inspiring positive changes in the use of plastics. Just last month, Walmart Canada officially announced the elimination of single use plastic bags from in-store shopping as well as online grocery pickup and delivery orders from each of their 400 stores across the country. This would amount to eliminating almost 750 million plastic bags each year. Biodegradable, compostable cucumber wraps are already on the market, and we can expect to see more innovations from grocers and food manufacturers.

5. Packaging

With a move towards take-out and meal delivery, chefs surveyed in the “What’s Hot 2022 Culinary Forecast” by the National Restaurant Association have actually ranked packaging four times in their top 10 trends for 2022:

  • Trend #1 – Packaging that is sustainable / reusable / recyclable
  • Trend #2 – Packaging that travels intact to maintain food quality
  • Trend #3 -Packaging that retains temperature
  • Trend #9 – Packaging that is tamper proof for food security

6. Immunity Support

As the pandemic continues, immunity remains top of mind. Findings from the 10th annual “What’s Trending in Nutrition” survey commissioned by Today’s Dietitian and Pollock Communications predicts that immunity support will remain a key purchase driver for 2022. Instead of “boosting” the immune system, consumers will realize that daily nutrition is important to keep the immune system strong and functioning well. Key supports for the immune system include protein, probiotics, selenium, zinc and vitamins A, C and D. Other purchase drivers identified from the dietitian survey are: affordable and value-based items, as well as food and beverages which offer comfort and emotional well-being.

7. Digital Do’s and Don’ts

Digital ordering capabilities, QR menus and touchless payment options will continue to become mainstream in restaurants and food service. In the survey of almost 1,200 dietitians, 90% of them cited online food shopping as the biggest trend from the pandemic that they believe will continue. This will compel marketers to reimagine ways to reach consumers on virtual shopping platforms, such as online promotions, digital coupons and immersive virtual branding experiences. On the other hand, the digital world is fuelling false nutrition news and dietitians say that social media is the top source of nutrition misinformation, with friends / family coming in second, and celebrities a close third.

8. Fuel for Remote Working & Learning

Working remotely from home, hybrid work models and even online schooling mean that more breakfasts and lunches will be made and enjoyed at home. Nestle USA predicts that consumers will be on the lookout for more at-home breakfast and lunch options such as heat-and-eat meals. According to top chefs, breakfast trends will include non-traditional proteins such as chorizo or vegan bacon, plant-based breakfast sandwiches and egg-base breakfast bowls. For lunch, trends point to globally inspired salads and grain-based bowls.

9. Non-alcoholic Beverages

Research from Whole Foods and The Hartman Group are noticing a growing community of “sober curious” millennials and Gen Z-ers. During pandemic lockdowns and restrictions on indoor gatherings, consumers are taking a more mindful approach to enjoying alcohol and embracing a world of “dry-solation”. Enter beverages without the buzz such as dealcoholized wines, low-alcohol beers, mocktails, and drinks with functional ingredients and adaptogens to enhance mood and relaxation.

10. Top 5 Regional Cuisines

Chefs surveyed by The National Restaurant Association and the American Culinary Federation predict that these top 5 regions and cuisines will influence the menus of 2022:

  1. Southeast Asian – Vietnamese, Singaporean, Philippine
  2. South American – Argentinian, Brazilian, Chilean
  3. Caribbean – Puerto Rican, Cuban, Dominican
  4. North African – Moroccan, Algerian, Libyan
  5. Western African – Nigerian, Ghanan, Western Saharan

 

Which of these trends are you most excited about? Let me know in the comments!

 

Is it OK to eat processed foods?

young adult reaching for a box of foods at a grocery store

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

In short, the answer is YES! As a Registered Dietitian, I believe that all foods can be part of a healthy diet, in sensible amounts. But there are actually different categories of processed foods, and some are better choices than others. Let’s break it down.

When you hear the term “processed foods”, you may automatically think of foods that come in a box or package. There’s more to the term “processed foods” though. Scientists at the School of Public Health at the University of Sao Paulo in Brazil developed a classification system called NOVA (it’s not an acronym) that groups foods into 4 different categories depending on the extent of the processing:

Unprocessed or Minimally Processed Foods: 

Unprocessed foods have not undergone any changes whatsoever. Some examples are fresh fruit and veggies as well as plain unseasoned fish and meats. Minimally processed foods are essentially unprocessed foods that have been cleaned, dried, ground, pasteurized, fermented or frozen. No oils, fats, sugars, salt or other substances have been added to the original food. Dried fruit, frozen veggies, dried beans, dried herbs and ground spices are just a few examples of minimally processed foods. Both unprocessed and minimally processed foods should from the foundation of a healthy, balanced diet.

Processed Culinary Ingredients: 

These are oils, fats, salt and sugars. These ingredients have been extracted from whole foods using processes such as pressing, grinding, refining and crushing. Vegetable oils for example are made from crushed seeds, nuts and fruit. Table sugar and molasses are obtained from sugarcane or sugar beet. Maple syrup is extracted from maple trees, and sea salt is mined from sea water. 

Processed Foods:

These are unprocessed foods with added oils, fats, salt or sugars. Most processed foods have just 2 or 3 ingredients. Some examples are salted nuts, smoked fish, fruit packed in syrup, pickled veggies, and homemade / bakery-made bread. These foods can still be enjoyed as part of an overall healthy diet. 

Ultra-processed Foods:

Most ready-to-eat and ready-to-heat products would be considered as ultra-processed foods. These are foods that are made by a series of processes and have extra ingredients such as additives, colours, flavours, emulsifiers, thickeners. Some examples are cake mixes, packaged pasta dishes, frozen entrées, reconstituted meat products and seasoned packaged snacks. While these foods can be convenient, enjoy them occasionally and in sensible amounts.

 

Webinar Replay – Food and Nutrition Trends

a glass of orange juice beside a white mug and a plate of fresh fruit

Join Sue Mah and Jo-Ann McArthur President at Nourish Food Marketing, as they reveal the top 6 food and nutrition trends that are driving consumers’ food decisions.

* Discover how the last year has changed consumers’ relationship to health, food and beverage
* Take away tips / tools that are relevant to you, your clients and your business

Watch the recording here!

Webinar Replay – Nutrition Myth-busting!

Webinar title Nutrition Myth-busting written on a small blackboard, surrounded by images of fruit, a headshot of Lucia and Sue, and the logos for Nutrition for NON-Nutritionists, Royal Fair and Florida Department of Citrus.

Do you love food? We sure do! But there are so many nutrition myths out there.

Get the facts on food and beverage in this fun, interactive presentation. Join award-winning dietitians Lucia Weiler and Sue Mah as they share the science of nutrition, offer credible advice for healthy living, and answer your burning questions. Sponsored by Florida Department of Citrus. Hosted by The Royal Agricultural Virtual Experience – Summer 2021.

To view the recording, login (or create a free login), go to the Auditorium tab, and then click on the June 16th to find the webinar recording.

Summertime Eating Tips – from a Dietitian who LOVES dessert!

Collage of fresh summer produce including peaches, lettuce, cherries and red peppers

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Helloooo Summer!

Who’s ready to fire up the BBQ and enjoy all the glorious seasonal produce? As an award-winning dietitian and daughter of a chef, I’m first in line for delicious, wholesome food – and yes, that includes dessert!

Here are my 4 tips for guilt-free summertime eating, with inspiring recipe ideas from my friends Nik and Carol over at Weekend at the Cottage!

1. Colour it up!

Think of fruits and veggies as Mother Nature’s superheroes – not only are they rich in vitamins and minerals, but they’re also filled with different disease-fighting plant-nutrients also called ‘phyto-nutrients’.

Tomatoes and watermelon for example, are packed with lycopene – it’s what gives these foods a red pigment. Lycopene may help lower your risk for heart disease and prostate cancer. Orange coloured produce such as carrots, cantaloupe, peaches and apricots contain carotenoids like beta-carotene to support your vision and reduces your risk for heart disease and some types of cancer.

Love blueberries? Me too! They contain a special plant nutrient called anthocyanins that are linked to healthy aging and brain health. And what about spinach, kale and Swiss chard? Well, all those leafy greens are packed with lutein, a special antioxidant that lowers your chances of developing age-related macular degeneration.

Dietitian Sue’s tip: At every meal, fill half your plate or bowl with colourful fruits and veggies. Salads are an easy way to get in those colours. Try this Tomato Avocado Salad or Chopped Kale Salad.

 2. Pick your protein

What’s calling your name? Burgers, ribs, poultry, tofu, shrimp?

Pick a protein at every meal. Protein helps you feel alert and full for longer. As part of a meal, protein also slows down the digestion of carbohydrates. This gives you a slow, steady rise in blood sugar levels which is beneficial for anyone with prediabetes or diabetes.

Dietitian Sue’s Tip: Choose lean proteins more often. One of my family faves are Mediterranean Chicken Kebabs and you could swap out the chicken for pork or cubes of firm tofu. For a smart protein choice that’s packed with heart-healthy omega-3 fats, aim for two fish meals a week – like Nik’s Grilled Salmon Burgers and Barbecued Salmon.

3. Find the fibre

We need 25-38 grams of fibre a day. But guess what? Most of us are only getting half that amount. Soluble fibre, found in strawberries, oatmeal and apples play a role in keeping our blood cholesterol levels healthy. Insoluble fibre, found in beans, bran and broccoli, help to keep us regular.

Dietitian Sue’s Tip: If you’re filling half your plate or bowl with fruit and veggies, then you’re already off to a great start! Try Granola or a high fibre breakfast cereal that contains at least 4 grams of fibre per serving. Check out my TV interview ‘Simple Ways to Boost Your Fibre’ for easy ways to pump up the fibre in a day’s worth of meals.

4. Make room for dessert

 I love dessert…as in, I eat dessert every night! For me, it’s really the best part of the meal! Sometimes, dessert is a bowl of fresh fruit salad or a few slices of ice cold watermelon. And sometimes, it’s Peach Cobbler or French vanilla ice cream on a waffle cone or a slice of gluten-free Chickpea Chocolate Cake. Whatever you choose for dessert, dig in and enjoy!

Dietitian Sue’s Tip: Let go of the ‘good food’ versus ‘bad food’ thinking. Give yourself permission to enjoy all foods in moderation without any guilt. Food is joy, and eating together with family / friends is always a celebration!

What recipes are you most excited to try? Let me know in the comments. Happy summer, everyone!

 

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