Tag Archives: cook

How to peel a pomegranate

Are you looking to add a pop of colour & burst of flavour to your salads & roasted veggies? Pomegranate seeds are all the rage. Getting to the seeds can be messy, but by removing them under water you keep the seeds from taking over your kitchen. Scroll on for my tips on how to get to the best part of this tasty fruit.

  1. Cut off the top of the pomegranate with a sharp knife. (The top is end is crown shaped, not flat)
  2. Cut into the skin of the pomegranate from top to bottom and place pomegranate in a large bowl of water. Be sure its fully covered to keep the juices from splattering.
  3. Pull apart the fruit under water to expose the seeds and separate them from the membrane. The seeds tend to sink in water while the white membrane holding the seeds floats to the top. Just skim it off. Drain the seeds & enjoy as is, or add to salads & roasted veggies.

How do you like to eat pomegranate?

Pumpkin Spice Latte

Do you love pumpkin flavoured beverages? Here is a tasty & better for you version that’s homemade & dietitian approved.
Enjoy as flavoured milk or add it to brewed coffee for a tasty latte. Scroll on for how to make it. ⁣

Yields 3 servings. ⁣

Ingredients:

  • 2 cups skim milk
  • 4 Tbsp pumpkin puree
  • 1 tsp pumpkin spice
  • 1 tsp vanilla
  • 1 tsp maple syrup. ⁣

Preparation:

  1. In a large measuring cup or bowl, warm the milk in the microwave for 3 minutes on medium high.
  2. Add pumpkin puree and whisk it into the warm milk.
  3. Add 1 tsp pumpkin spice, 1 tsp vanilla and 1 tsp maple syrup to the ‘pumpkin milk’.
  4. Mix well to keep pumpkin purée from settling on the bottom of this flavoured milk.⁣⁣
  5. Enjoy as ‘pumpkin milk’ or add to freshly brewed coffee for a delicious latte. Top with frothed milk & sprinkle with ground cinnamon or nutmeg. ⁣
    How do you like your pumpkin spice drinks?

5 learnings from the Food and Nutrition Forum at The Royal Winter Fair

Lucia at royal 2018

Do you love food and care about how it’s grown, handled and brought to market? We do! As part of staying on top of emerging trends and new research we joined experts in food and nutrition to engage in conversation at the Royal Winter Fair Food and Nutrition Forum. As a Registered Dietitian, Lucia was invited to welcome delegates to a day of learning, getting ‘agricultured’ and celebrating the power of farming, food and nutrition. Inspiring speakers included professors, farmers, authors, dietitians and home economists. Working hand in hand, our passion for wellness and good food united us all!

Here are 5 top learnings from the sessions:

1. Farmers feed Cities
An amazing panel of 3 women farmers shared about their lives and the challenges they face in working on their farms of grain, eggs & beef. Taking care of their land and livestock is a passion and a profession. Their stories showed how deeply they care about the work they do, and how much environmental stewardship matters to each of them. Thank you Jenn Doleman, Tonya Havercamp and Sandra Vos for being the farmers who feed cities!

2. Taking care of the planet
Biodiversity & food production are deeply connected. Dr. Christian Artuso studies grassland birds and found that an important way to preserve their biodiversity is linked to cattle farming. His Grassland Bird studies are part of an award winning conservation movement in South America.

3. Teach Food and Nutrition to Students
Food and nutrition know-how are life skills with significant short and long term benefits. Although healthy lifestyle is a trend, it’s evident that many of today’s young Canadians lack even the most basic food preparation skills. Let’s give kids the best chance possible to nourish their bodies. An important consideration is expanding high school curriculum to include some mandatory food education. The Ontario Home Economics Association (OHEA) calls on the Government of Ontario to make at least one food & nutrition course compulsory. To support this petition or for more information visit www.food-literacy.ca

4. Translating the science – how to spot the fake news and alternative food facts.
Bestselling Author, Dr Joe Schwarcz shared stories of science misuse. We were reminded that correlation is an easy sway for the scientifically challenged consumer and it does NOT mean cause and effect. His latest book, A Feast of Science is an entertaining read of fact vs fiction. To help you navigate through fake nutrition news reach out to your nearest Registered Dietitian, the experts who can translate the science of nutrition and help you unlock food’s potential to support healthy living.

5. What’s next?
Let’s keep the farm to table conversations going! The more we know about where our food comes from, how it’s grown and handled the more grounded we will be. We also love sharing credible insights and resources! Check out our blogs and writing at  and Contact us about your questions on the power of food and its connection to health.

Dietary tips for people with type 2 diabetes

one in three live with diabetes Feb 2017

Diabetes and PRE Diabetes affect many people. If you have diabetes or PRE-diabetes you know that managing the condition is key to your health and wellness. This however can be overwhelming and some people aren’t sure where to start or how to get back on track. The good news is that type 2 diabetes can be prevented or delayed with appropriate lifestyle changes. [1]

Food is a key component in managing diabetes so having a dietitian as part of your care team will help you achieve your health goals. [2]  There is not a simple ‘one-diet-fits’ all approach. A dietitian is a credible trusted nutrition expert who works with you to meet your individual goals. Here are 5 tips to help you manage diabetes.

  1. Focus on small gradual dietary changes that you can stick with.
  2. Keep portion sizes in check. Consider the plate method – making half your plate veggies.
  3. Understand carbohydrates – it’s not just sugars, but starch also breaks down to sugars!
  4. Monitory your blood sugar levels.
  5. Trust a Registered Dietitian with your nutritional health.  You can DO IT, ask for help when you need it.

[1] Today’s Dietitian (2017)
[2] Dietitians of Canada Nutrition Month (2017)

How to Cook Perfect Green Veggies – make ahead 2 step blanching method

green-veg-cook-recipeHere is my secret tip for tasty make ahead vibrant green veggies. It’s called blanching – where the veggies are placed briefly into boiling water then removed and plunged into an ice bath that stops the cooking. Blanching is a terrific preparation method to partially cook veggies making them a bit softer and removing any strong taste without compromising nutrition. You can serve blanched veggies directly or keep them in the fridge for up to 5 days. Use blanched veggies as salad boosters or reheat for a quick dinner side dish. It’s also a terrific pot luck dinner contribution where you prep ahead at home, store in fridge and upon arrival at the host’s home you only need to reheat briefly for a healthy and tasty side dish.

  1. Boil a large pot of water (you can add 2 Tbsp lemon juice to the water for flavour boost). Prepare your ice water bath and a dish with a tea towel to dry the veggies. (see pictures top row)
  2. Wash and clean you green veggies.
  3. Drop a small batch of veggies into boiling water for 2 min (3 min max. if you must). Repeat steps below until all your veggies are blanched.
  4. Take out veggies from boiling water using long handle tongs or slotted spoon & toss them into ice water bath for a few minutes to stop the cooking.
  5. Remove cooled veggies from ice bath, shake out water and place them on clean tea towel to dry.
  6. Place all your blanched veggies in a covered container and store in the fridge for up to 5 days.
  7. Enjoy cold in salads or reheat on stove top in a pan with 1 Tbsp vegetable oil. Top with toasted almonds for a tasty and nutritious side dish.

Bon appétit

Simply Cook and Enjoy!

best bean salad pictureMarch in Nutrition Month and dietitians across Canada are celebrating by cooking with you! We know it can be challenging to prepare nutritious meals and snacks day in and day out, so Nutrition Month 2014 is here to help.  On the nutritionmonth.ca  website and in the book COOK! you will find recipes, eating tips, resources and more to make wholesome coming a part of our family’s daily routine.

For your inspiration, here is one of my favourite quotes and recipes. Enjoy!

“The only real stumbling block is fear of failure. In cooking you’ve got to have a what-the-hell attitude.” Julia Child

Best Bean Salad by Lucia Weiler, RD as published in COOK! by Dietitians of Canada

Canned beans are a time saver and work very well in this dish.

2               large tomatoes, chopped
1               can (540 mL/19 oz.) mixed bean medley, drained and rinsed
¼   cup     finely sliced red or greeen onion
¼   cup     chopped fresh cilantro
2   tbsp     chopped fresh basil

Dressing

1               clove garlic, minced
¼   tsp      hot pepper flakes
¼   tsp      freshly ground black pepper
Pinch        salt
1 ½ tbsp   extra virgin olive oil
2   tsp       balsamic vinegar
1   tsp      freshly squeezed lemon juice

  1. In a medium bowl, combine tomatoes, bean medley, red onion, cilantro and basil
  2. Dressing: In a small bowl, whisk together garlic, hot pepper flakes, black pepper, salt, oil, vinegar and lemon juice
  3. Pour dressing over bean mixture and toss gently to coat. Cover and refrigerate for at least 1 hour, until chilled, or for up to 1 day.

Makes 6 servings

Tip:      Be sure to wash cilantro thoroughly, as it may have some soil hidden among the leaves
Serving Idea:   Add half an egg salad sandwich and a glass of milk for a satisfying lunch.

Nutrients per serving:  Energy:  143 calories,  Fat  4.3 g, Saturated fat 0.7 g, Sodium 379 mg (16 %DV)  Carbohydrate 21 g, Fibre  6  g (24 % DV),   Protein: 7  g,  Calcium 43 mg (4%DV)  Iron  1.2 mg (9% DV),  High in Vitamin A, C and Folate