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A Tuesday Evening

Today was a long day. It started with my phone’s alarm going off at 5:40am, and that was not an accident. My intern partner and I had to be at Royal Inland Hospital by 6:30am so we could hit the road with our preceptor to head to Kelowna. In Kelowna we would be attending a group ordering session with our preceptor, and many other foodservice managers from across the Interior Health Authority.

It was a long day, both interesting and dull. Seeing how a health authority goes about ordering their food through one source for multiple different health service areas (IHA stretches across a large part of BC) is interesting. A meeting that lasts all day and talks about stuff you don’t know all the details about? Not interesting.

It was a day that needed an evening worth getting to. In my head while sitting in the meeting and trying not to nod off, I pictured a bag of fresh carrots I knew we had in our fridge. I knew what I wanted for supper.

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Is there anything like ginger? Yum.

I chopped up some onions, garlic, ginger and carrots.

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Threw them all in the pot and let them boil away. 

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My brother was helpful and made a salad to go along with the soup.

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Looks like a delicious meal, no? It was, oh it was.

I’ve also spent a great deal of time in the kitchen at the hospital testing out the recipes for my cafeteria special. Man is it intimidating cooking in a facility like that! Very scary. But sort of exciting too.

How has your week been going?

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Filed under school, Work

2 Weeks

I’m officially two weeks into my internship, and boy has it been keeping me busy. It feels more like a month really. Time wise, not so much in terms of the amount I’ve learned.

The biggest difference so far for me personally is how self directed it is. I’m used to having something to measure my accomplishes against, and while we do have some assignments that will be “graded” at the same time it’s up to us to know what we should be learning. What will make me competent in foodservice? What should I be thinking about, and what do I need to be paying attention to as I follow my preceptor?

So far so good, I’m on my way to learning all sorts of interesting administrative stuff, and about all the different areas in the foodservice at Royal Inland Hospital.

I’ve been spending lots of time in my kitchen as well, one of the projects we have involves creating a “cafeteria special”. I didn’t want to use recipes I’ve never tried, so I made sure I tested them out on my parents, not that they mind.

Speaking of recipes, I owe you one don’t I?

Grandmi’s Fudgies:

Ingredients:

1 cup margarine or butter
4 squares unsweetened baking chocolate
4 eggs
2 cup sugar
1 1/3 cups flour
1 tsp vanilla
Dash Salt

Directions:
Preheat oven to 350*.
Grease two 8×8 or one 8×15 size pan.

1. Melt the chocolate and margarine in a double boiler or microwave. Once a smooth mixture, remove from the double boiler and allow to cool while you perform step 2.
2. Mean while beat the eggs with the sugar until light in colour and fluffy, add vanilla and salt.
3. Add in the chocolate and margarine mixture slowly to egg and sugar, stir as you pour.
4. Next add in flour and salt.
5. Transfer to the two pans, and put in the oven. Cook for 25 to 30 minutes. And this is the secret key: do not over cook. Test them a little before you think they’ll be done, and stick a toothpick or knife in the middle. If it comes out just barely clean it’s perfect. (in kamloops I cooked them for 25minutes exactly).

Sorry for the lack of pictures on this post, what can I say? This post was a little spontaneous!

Adios, hope your weekend is going well!

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Filed under baking, Recipe, school

Where have I been?

I have this habit of disappearing over the summer. It happened last year, it happened this year. Maybe it will happen again, who knows?

But I have to say, I was busy this summer, really busy. I took some courses, one that was full time (actually 8 to 4, five days a week). Then I went on a trip. Yes, well trip might be an understatement.

I spent six weeks in the gorgeous country of Kenya, teaching kids about HIV & AIDS:

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It was crazy, it was intense. It brought up so many emotions, I don’t think I could describe them all. In some ways I still cannot describe what I’m feeling. Mostly good, mostly. How can it not be, when I was out teaching kids as cute as these:

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It was a crazy trip, and I of course did a lot of traveling afterwards too. Saw some of these:

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A few of these:

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Some of these:

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And about a gazillion of these:

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And of course zebras, antelope, fancy birds, waterbufalo, but you know there’s only so much room for photos.

I don’t have a lot of time this evening for a long post, but I thought an update would be good, and I’ll try and keep blogging as I get started with my dietetic internship.

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Filed under Volunteer

Stages of Change

I really am not too sure what I wanted to write about this week. It’s felt crazy and not so crazy all at the same time. I had an interview for a great summer opportunity, that would entail me going abroad for awhile volunteering.

I also found out that there is a very good chance I could get advanced placement for my internship (meaning it would start sept 2011 instead of sept 2012).

But still so much is undecided.

And I don’t like that. I am not a “by-the-seat-of-my-pants” kinda girl. I really do like a plan more then anything. Even if I’m going to make a change to things or something I have to have some time to think about it. I bet one day someone will ask me to marry them and I’ll respond, “I just need to think about it.” Because I don’t really know if I have a spontaneous bone in my body.

Having so much of my future right now in other people’s hands is sort of driving me insane. That said there are some things I’m working on changing in my own life, but like everything else they’re going to require some thought. I guess if we looked at the Stages of Change theory, I’d often be found in the “pre-contemplation” or “contemplation” stage.

One other thing went really well this week, a yummy recipe I’ll share with you. IMG_1498

Cinnamon-Coco-Quinoa

1 cup Quinoa
1 cup water
1 cup coconut milk
1-2tsp cinnamon
1/4 cup raisins
1 apple
1-2 tbsp agave syrup

1. Gather ingredients.

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2. Through the first five ingredients, throw into a pot and bring to a boil. Lower temperature and allow to simmer until liquid is gone and quinoa is cooked.

3. Meanwhile core and chop the apple, through into a medium sized mixing bowl.

4. Put quinoa in the bowl with the apple and mix all together with agave.

5. Enjoy! This makes 3-4 servings, though if you’re REALLY hungry it could serve two as well.

I ate it the following day for breakfast topped with some almond butter. I think it would probably taste great even if you didn’t use coconut milk to make the quinoa.

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Filed under Recipe

That Time of Year

It’s that time of year.

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Where there’s ribbons and bows, and candles.

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We celebrate with friends, classmates, and co-workers; Happy Holidays! Another year comes to an end.

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Where frost is on the ground, and leaves have fallen down.

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It’s that time of year where procrastination becomes an art.

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Be it baking, photography, or internet surfing.

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It’s that time of year that I’d much rather be outside walking around.

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Then cooped up in here, hovering over my textbook.

But if I want to pass, I guess I should get to work.

So goodnight blog world, I’ll see you again tomorrow!

PS The Ginger cookies are a vegan recipe I’m working on, it’s not quite ready, when it is, I’ll let you know. 😉

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Filed under Fun, school

Bonjour! Je suis un Oignon

Ok not really. In fact I don’t think you’d have a lot of fun (or friends) as an onion). Then again, maybe that’s what you’d prefer, sort of like Shrek and his “onions have layers” speech.

But I’m getting off track. There really is only one thing that’s both French and an Onion, and it’s:

French Onion Soup

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Strictly speaking, traditional French Onion soup is definitely NOT vegetarian. And because I’ve been vegetarian since a time when I would have wrinkled my nose at French Onion soup, I have no idea if this is even close to being authentic. But here is a yummy soup I’ve been enjoying all week.

Ingredients

5 small onions
3 cloves garlic
4 cups vegetable broth (low sodium)
1/4 c soy sauce (I used low sodium)
2 tbsp margarine (I probably used almost three)
2 tbsp balsamic vinegar
1 tbsp brown sugar
1 tbsp molasses

Bread & cheese (I totally splurged and used gruyere.).

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1. Slice the onions so you get nice thin strands. As you do this melt the margarine in a large pot. Put the onions in the pot. This is the key step. You want to use low-medium to medium heat, and you want to cook the onions down. this takes about 20 mins. Be patient, it’s so worth it for those lovely carmalized onions. Mine went from this:

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To This:

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2. Once your onions are all tiny and deliciously shrunk, add in the remaining ingredients. I added in everything but the broth mixed, then added in the broth.

3. Bring to a boil, then simmer for about 10min. Preheat the oven for broiling.

4. Place a bowl in a pan, scoop in some soup, top with bread and shredded cheese. (note: I used a full piece of bread that made eating it difficult. I would definitely chop up the bread next time)

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5. Place under the broiler for 2min, or until cheese is bubblin’.

6. Devour.

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Hmmm. It is so delicious. though if you really know what French Onion soup tastes like, my apologies if this is as far from it as it gets, it can be hard as vegetarians to get that meaty taste, if you know what I mean, I think it’s almost what is being called “umami”.

Even though it’s exam time and I should be studying (uh, this post might be procrastination numero 5 today) I actually have quite a few posts planned for the next few weeks. What can I say? I’m in such a blogging mood it isn’t even funny. 🙂

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Filed under Dinner, Recipe

Sweet Potato

The weather here in Vancouver is absolutely crazy. For Vancouver that is. The view from my place on Saturday was rather odd.IMG_0917

I know, this looks pretty normal for all you other Canadians, but really, this is not normal winter weather, let alone November weather for Vancouver.

But the truth is I love it! I always miss the normal winter weather when I’m in Vancouver over the winter. It’s just so dreary and grey normally, it brings me down.

This weekend I also attended The LFS Community Harvest Dinner. This was a dinner put on my several of my classmates, and it’s a tradition in the Land and Food Systems Faculty. It was an amazing five course meal. Three of them stood out: Fig and Goat Cheese Compte on homemade rainforest type crackers, Roasted Sweet Potato & Red Onion Soup, and the Winter Fruit with spiced Chiffon Cake Trifle. Delicious.

Needless to say when my dad came to town this week, and the temperature outside was hitting –10, I knew that on my grocery shopping list would be sweet potatoes and red onions. (Yes I’m that spoiled college girl whose parents visit and buy her groceries. :)) I of course invited him over to enjoy the delicious soup.

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Sprinkled with a little goat cheese.

Just to compare and contrast, Saturday’s version:

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Since I don’t have their recipe (yet, I’m gonna get it though) I’ll share with you mine.

Roasted Sweet Potato & Red Onion Soup

makes 3-6 servings depending on size you choose.

Ingredients

1-2 large sweet potatoes (I used sweet potatoes, not yams)
1 large red onion
2 tbsp Olive oil
Salt & Pepper (to taste)

3 cloves garlic
4 cups vegetable Broth
Pinch Paprika
1 tbsp Cumin

– knife & cutting board.
– large mixing bowl
– baking sheet
– pot
– blender

Directions

1. Preheat Oven to 375. Wash potatoes, and peel onion. Chop up into fairly small chunks for both. Throw together into a bowl and coat with olive oil (get in there use your hands). Add some salt and pepper.
2. Take those vegetables and spread them over a cookie sheet. Roast in the oven for 25minutes. Make sure they’re cooked through when you take them out.
3. When the potatoes and onion have about 5mins to go, bring your broth to a low boil or simmer.
4. Remove the vegetables from the oven and scoop into blender. Add the broth. Blend until smooth. I added it all slowly, because I’m scared of breaking my blender. Oh and good tip, keep your oven mitt on if you’re like me and keep your hand on top of your blender’s lid when you use it, because damn boiled water and fresh cooked potatoes are hot!
5. Serve promptly. If you keep it for later, it definitely thickens up, so you might want to water it down to reheat.

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But seriously so good, and so perfect for winter.

What are you enjoying about the winter season?

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Filed under Dinner, Recipe