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Back to School Tricks and Tips – Inside Toronto Blog

As Fall arrives, we get ready to celebrate a new school year and all the wonderful things that come with the changing of the seasons. Of course back to school, and for some of us back to work, takes up the majority of our time with planning, buying school supplies, clothing and sometimes moving. Whether you’re a parent with children going back to school or a university student starting first ...
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Spotlight on Moroccan Cuisine

Moroccan cuisine is very well known for being important and diverse, thanks to the interactions taken place between various countries over the centuries. The Berbers, who were the first inhibitors of Morocco, introduced staple dishes that still exist today, such as the ever-popular dish, couscous. The Arabs brought to Morocco ingredients that are key to many dishes today, such as spices, nuts and ...
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Spotlight on Spanish Cuisine

Like many other cultures Spain’s cuisine has been influenced by many outside sources. However, this European country has developed a cuisine that is uniquely its own. Spain’s location (connected to France, and close to Morocco) puts the country in a good position to trade, and be influenced by other cultures. The Moors introduced the Spanish to fruits, fish, meats nuts, rice (the Spanish stapl...
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Spotlight on Lebanese Cuisine

Lebanese food is one of the most popular of all the Middle Eastern cultures. For the most part, Lebanon has always been ruled by other countries, which in turn influenced the type of foods the Lebanese served and ate. At first the Ottoman Turks had a large influence on Lebanon, introducing foods such as olive oil, bread, stuffed veggies, various nuts and more. They also increased the popularity of...
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Niger Seed: More than just a Food for Birds

It is supposed that the endeavor of a great portion of vegetarian cuisine is to maintain great flavour in dishes that must go without the otherwise helpful attributes of preparation alongside meat. Therefore, it could be said that Ethiopia’s geographical proximity to the development of ancient Orthodox religions and their subsequent cultural practices (that include fasting as one of many dietar...
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Spotlight on Ethiopian Cuisine

Ethiopia is a very small country located in Eastern Africa, and because of its mountainous terrain, neighboring countries are prevented from exercising much influence over the country’s culture and cuisine. This has helped Ethiopia to keep its purity, in terms of food. The small amount of trade that has occurred includes chili peppers imported from Portugal and ginger from India. During the late...
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Spotlight on Brazilian Cuisine

Traditional Brazilian food is shaped by the combination of various different cultures coming together to mix and exchange dishes. Originally the food in Brazil came from the main roots of the country, but over time it has adopted food traditions from the Lebanese, Germans, Italians, Japanese, Spanish and most influentially, the Africans and Portuguese. Like the country itself, the Brazilian cui...
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Feature Foodie Blog: Breakaway Cook

Introducing Feature Foodie and Author, Eric Gower. As part of our spotlight on Japanese Cuisine we really wanted to share with you this amazing recipe for Pickled Ginger from Eric Gower's blog, “Breakaway Cook”. Eric is also the author of four cook books: The Breakaway Vegetarian Cook, The Breakaway Cook, The Breakaway Japanese Kitchen, and Eric's Kitchen. Contact Eric: Website: http://break...
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Simply Seaweed: Wakame

If you enjoy a side dish with your sushi or sashimi then you have most likely come across wakame before. At my favourite Japanese restaurant in Toronto Goma Wakame started to be offered to me in generous portions as a freebie years ago - after I had established myself as a regular lunch customer. At first, I remained more enthusiastic about my Red Dragon roll, but quickly relented after my fiancé...
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Spotlight on Japanese Cuisine

Toronto's reputation for fantastic Japanese food does leave something to be desired, at least in the eyes of our West Coast counterparts. But our love affair with sushi can not be denied. From AYCE lunch specials, to fresh, delicate sashimi, we love our Japanese cuisine. However, I think there are some misconceptions in Toronto about Japanese cuisine. That isn't to say that there aren't some wo...
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Eat Well this Winter – The non-resolution guide!

We hope that one of the things that comes across from our posts at Toronto Cooking is that we are firm believers in eating well. Healthy eating is as simple as cooking as many meals as possible at home! We know that this can get difficult with our busy life styles, but not only can it improve your health, it can make staying indoors much more bearable! Therefore, we dedicate this week's spotlight...
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The Best of 2011

As the year grows to a close and we’re all still recovering from our Christmas and Hanukkah tables, we thought it would only be appropriate to recap some of our favourite spotlights, recipes, bloggers, stores and articles. Those leftovers are bound to run out eventually so this is the perfect time to take a stroll through our archives to remember some of our best food posts! Italy There was no...
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One Controversial Christmas Cake – The Panettone

Every year my mother makes a Christmas fruit cake for my father. It is dense, moist, rich and packed with nuts and candied fruit - a sure first sign of the season in my parent’s home since childhood. However, it looks and tastes considerably different than the festive version that adorned my local deli on Davenport Rd. when I first moved to Toronto. The panettone, as it is called, is a sweet bre...
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Sweet Stories: Shortbread & Sugarplums

When it comes to these two Holiday culinary traditions, which came first: sugarplums or shortbread? It surprised some family and friends to discover that shortbread, originating in Scotland, is the elder of the two. The sheer simplicity of its ingredients (butter/shortening, oat flour, and sugar) and preparation make it a favourite throughout the year. Its overall versatility as a bread, biscuit,...
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A Nod to Eggnog

When it started to snow in Toronto this week, it was a big deal. Signing onto Twitter, #snow was the highest trending topic, followed by #HappyDecember – which is still going strong, although the white stuff didn’t stick around for long. The first snowfall and eggnog have a lot in common. They usually appear in December, give us a wonderful Holiday feeling and come January we wonder why the lo...
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Spotlight on Holiday Food

December is almost upon us, which really is an alarming thought! When did it sneak up on so quickly? We suspect that it's about now that the trees and decorations are going up many of your homes. This is the perfect opportunity to tell you all a neat Christmas story. Some of you may know of the horrific Halifax Explosion of 1917. Halfiax was devastated by a huge explosion on the 6th of December w...
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Schmecking Good Fare in Germanic Waterloo Region!

This week we want to welcome guest blogger, Andrew Coppolino. Andrew is a food writer and host of the 570 News Food Show. He's introducing us to the rich Germanic culture of the Kitchner/Waterloo region. If you really want to experience true Germanic fare, it's worth the trip! It’s true that early October brings the annual feting of our German heritage in Waterloo Region, but the traditional...
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The Best of German Food in Toronto

Although it may not seem like it there is a rich German food culture in Toronto, you just have to know where to go to find it. Bakeries, delis, and restaurants all abound serving up some very satisfying German food. Our job, as we see it, is to find the best of the best for you. We've put together our top five and we urge you to go and try them out! WVRST - An ode, a shrine, a dedication to the g...
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Spotlight on German Cuisine

What comes to mind when you think of German cuisine? Metwursts, sauerkraut, cold cuts, perhaps apple strudel? Those are all truly wonderful winter comfort foods. When you sit down to tuck into a German meal, it can often feel like you’re settling in for something very special and generous. I think German cuisine has suffered somewhat in the health conscious environment we live in. Wursts and po...
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Bush Tucker

Bush Tucker is the colloquial term for native bush foods of Australia. It is now much prized for its strong flavours, and many Modern Australian gourmet restaurants use bush tucker ingredients in familiar recipes. Home cooks are experimenting more and more with flavours much familiar to the aboriginal people of Australia for thousands of years. However, it was not always so in vogue. Bush Tucker...
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Australian Lamb: There's an iPhone App for That

Many Canadians are familiar with seeing New Zealand lamb products in their local grocery stores, but according to the United Nations, neighbouring Australia tops the list of indigenous sheep meat producing countries that also includes: Iran, the United Kingdom, and Turkey in the top five. In the early 1800s, both wheat and sheep farming were determined as ideal agricultural endeavours during explo...
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Australian Wine Part One

How to even begin to address the monster that is the Australian wine industry? Australia is the world’s 4th largest exporter of wine, with over 760 million litres a year leaving the country. At home, Aussies drink over 500 million litres of domestic wine each year. The cool southern parts of the country present perfect micro climates and topographies for the growing of a diverse range of varieti...
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The Eight Traditions of Chinese Cuisine

Culinary heritage is due largely to the intersection of geography and history. Where a region is located on the world map is important, however, the topographic elements play a factor, as well. In a country as expansive as China the development of the eight culinary traditions and the maintenance of their individuality over time is testament to a diverse terrain and climate. The eight culinary tr...
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Spotlight on Australian Cuisine

How to describe a cuisine of a country that has no defined cultural identity? Much like Canada, Australia is defined by its Aboriginal past and its multicultural present. It is a modern country, with a modern pan-Asian cuisine. One of the lines in the Australian National Anthem says, “Our home is girt by sea”. We know that the country is famous for its stunning coastline, which is home to t...
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Canadian Chinese Food

It seems every small town in Ontario, and perhaps even Canada, has a Chinese restaurant. I remember as a child rolling chicken balls and that bright, but familiar ‘red sauce’ around on a paper plate at Oakville Place, in the mall’s hub of activity that was the 1980s food court. This was my first interaction with ‘Chinese food’, though surely not Chinese cuisine?! As a cynical adult, I w...
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Spotlight on Chinese Cuisine

Chinese Cuisine, one of the world’s most popular and well-known cuisines, is hundreds if not thousands of years old. The Chinese pride themselves on eating a variety of foods, even dog. Chinese cuisine can be categorised into one of eight Culinary Traditions, or regional cuisines. The best known of these are Cantonese, Shandong, Jiangsu and Szechuan cuisines. The styles are influenced by factors...
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Indian Cuisine: A Few Fresh Fundamentals

Living in Toronto, one is lucky to have access to many fabulous Indian restaurants. Finding excellent East Indian cuisine is certainly not difficult, but there is a misconception that cooking it is. Sure, adding in some onions, potatoes, garlic and buying the best basmati you can get your hands on are valid – but it doesn’t really mean you’re cooking Indian. The major issue is spices and ...
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The Last Bite

October 7, 2011 Happy weekend, Foodies! Can you believe it’s already Thanksgiving? Here at TorontoCooking.ca we’ve been busy beavers this week! We started off with a visit to Food Truck Eats #3 – Nuit Blanche edition. We shivered, we laughed and most importantly, we ate. There are some wonderful local Food Trucks, we support these local businesses! Check out our video post. This week we ...
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10 places to eat in Toronto, and feel like you’re 100 miles away.

Today, in the world of the foodie – everyone has an opinion. They are made fast and furious via check-ins with everything from Foursquare to the more ‘traditional’ Facebook status. It doesn’t seem so long ago as a kid that my Uncle simply photographed us (with a film camera!) eating at his favourite haunts, like Rodney’s, and that was enough. Now, it’s pictures of the food, not people ...
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Spotlight on Indian Cuisine

Over 5,000 years of history, India has welcomed a multitude of settlers with a variety of belief systems. Regions and religions make up a large portion of the cultural elements of the food. In the northernmost areas of India, close to the Himalayas, the weather is mild. Wheat is the primary grain and meat dishes can be elaborate. Most food is cooked in oil. To the south towards the equator, dis...
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Spotlight on French Cuisine

French cuisine is extremely diverse, This variety is supported by the French passion for good food in all its forms, France's extraordinary range of different geographies and climates which support the local production of all types of ingredients, and France's long and varied history. Meals range from the very basic, such as the traditional baguette plus cheese plus inexpensive wine, to very el...
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TorontoCooking.ca does the Vegetarian Food Festival

We visited The Vegetarian Food Festival and spoke to some of the vendors while taking in the delicious smells, tastes and sounds. As first-timers at the festival we had such an amazing experience. The weather was great and the food was even better. From fresh coconut juice from Coconut Joe to seeing yellow and purple cauliflower from Mama Earth Organics, we took it all in! A little bit about th...
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Feature Foodie Blog: Life's A Feast

Introducing Feature Foodie "Jamie Schler, founder of Life’s a Feast" We are excited to share with you a wonderful recipe for our Spotlight on Italian Cuisine from Jamie at Life's a Feast! About Jamie & Life's a Feast: My home is a jumble of cultures, my kitchen a merry tumult of cuisines, each one a source and inspiration for both my cooking and my writing. I am an American of Eastern European ...
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Feature Foodie Blog: Closet Cooking

Introducing Feature Foodie "Kevin Lynch, founder of Closet Cooking". We are excited to share with you this wonderful recipe for our Spotlight on Italian Cuisine from Kevin at Closet Cooking! About Kevin & Closet Cooking: We asked Kevin to tell us a little about himself and how he began his adventure with food: "I had never really paid all that much attention to food and eating was just somethin...
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Spotlight on Italian Cuisine

The richness of Italian cuisine lies in its diversity. Every town has a distinctive way of making sausage, special types of cheese and wine, and a local type of bread. Variations in the universal pasta are another example of the multiplicity of Italian recipes: soft egg noodles in the north, hard-boiled spaghetti in the south, with every conceivable variation in size and shape. Not only does ea...
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Spotlight on Vietnamese Cuisine

Vietnam boasts one of the most diverse, delicious and healthiest gastronomies in the world. Vietnam’s ingredients reflect its geography and climate. Rice (grown in water paddies throughout the country) is the main starch used in everyday meals, and is also made into different kind of cakes and noodles. Besides a number of Buddhist vegetarian dishes, most Vietnamese dishes or meals are a combi...
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Spotlight on Persian Cuisine

Persian cuisine is filled with strong tastes and wonderful aromas. In the old days, Iranian families gathered around a sofreh which was a table cloth or spread on the floor over a Persian carpet or kilim. The sofreh was and still is the corner stone of Persian cuisine and a place of gathering, laughter, relaxation, and enjoyment. Persians have very tolerant palates as the cuisine ranges in tast...
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Spotlight on Greek Cuisine

Greek cooking offers an incredibly rich and diverse array of foods and beverages. Greece is a nation of small farmers who produce an incredible array of mainly organically produced cheeses, oils, fruits, nuts, grains, legumes, and vegetables, supplemented by an array of greens and herbs that grow in the wild. These are the foods that form the base of the traditional Greek regimen, to which they...
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Spotlight on Polish Cuisine

Polish traditional food, a cuisine that was suppressed during Communist times, is now making a comeback. Polish traditional foods consists of traditional Slavic fare, but also has influences from Italy and France that date back to the medieval Polish court. The Polish traditional foods you will encounter today are flavorful, hearty, and complex, but they have a lighter side, too. Polish cooking c...
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Spotlight on Guyana

The cuisine of Guyana shows a combination of ingredients and traditions from indigenous people, east Indians, Europeans, and Africans, among others. This causes the gastronomy of Guyana to be very varied and interesting with generations born from African, French or Indian descent. This mixed culture also influenced its food, and because of that, either Chinese food or spices used by the Indians...
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Spotlight on Colombian Cuisine

Colombian Cuisine is very diverse and varies depending on the different regions of Colombia. In some areas you will find specialties like roasted ants or guinea pigs while in other areas Colombians wouldn't even touch those dishes. You can divide Colombian foods culture by regions, and rural vs. urban. That, and of course, wealth. Colombia is not a paradise for vegetarians as the Colombian die...
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Korean Cuisine

Korean food is famous for being hot and spicy, having an array of unique and delicious flavours, and also being very healthy. It has a distinct national identity that, in its contemporary form, combines dishes and techniques from both peasant diets and royal palace foods. Korea is surrounded on four sides by water -- so, besides rice, seafood is the staple food. The markets overflow with fish,...
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Spotlight on Dutch Cuisine

We are very lucky this week to have one of our employees utilize her personal connections to bring us some fascinating information and treats. Recipes were received from an old cookbook from 1910 that was passed down by her grandmother. It is the 11th edition and was used at Amsterdamse Huishoudschool "Amsterdam Housekeeping School" where young women were domestically trained during that time....
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Celebrate the cooler weather with Moira Sanders

By Darlene Morrison As we get closer to winter and the cold temperatures arrive, we tend to bundle up in layers to stay warm. Do you ever notice that with food, we do the same thing? Fall and winter seem to bring out the comfort food in all of us. I like to bake and use my slow cooker for many hot meals during the months to come. I love to cook soups, chili, hot chocolate for the kids and yummy...
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Gluten Freedom Week in Toronto

GlutenFreedom Week is a week-long event that will take place at Toronto’s finest dining establishments from November 8-15, 2014. The participating restaurants will offer patrons a delicious selection of 3-course gluten-free fare for a fixed price. Each restaurant has created a 3-course gluten-free menu at varying price points.  Guests will make reservations as instructed under Restaurant tab...
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Roasted Pumpkin Seeds, Yum!

Halloween is a fun time of the year for children and mine are no exception.  After the decorations are put up, costumes are picked and pumpkins are carved, there is still one thing missing that has become a yearly tradition in my house.  The fun isn't quite over.  What do you do with your pumpkin seeds?  We baked Roasted Pumpkin seeds.  There are so many recipes for roasting pumpkin seeds...
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Cooking In The Kitchen With Kids

Do you ever wonder how to get your children involved and having fun with the cooking process? Here are a few ideas for cooking in the kitchen with kids that come to mind. As a mother of four, I am always trying to engage my children in the decision making process as to what they put into their body.  When the meal plan gets made for the next two weeks, I ask them what type of food they would l...
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TorontoCooking.ca offers Thanksgiving tips and tricks including cooking your turkey upside down for a juicy bird

On Monday, Oct. 13, the time arrives where the whole family gathers around the table and shares stories while dining on great dishes such as cranberry sauce, mashed potatoes and of course a big juicy turkey. Thanksgiving is a wonderful time of year, but it can also be incredibly stressful as well. Preparing a meal for a lot of people can add complex elements to a usually enjoyable task. Man...
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A History of Recipes – Inside Toronto Blog

Did you know that the earliest recorded recipes come from 1600 BC? Recipes have been around longer than we could ever imagine - the joy of cooking and creating meals has been a significant part of our history. Arabic recipes are documented as far back as the 10th century and King Richard II is known to have commissioned a book called ‘Forme of Cury’ (Forms of Cooking) in 1390. Around this time...
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Spring Cleaning Your Kitchen – Inside Toronto Blog

After this long and brutal winter, spring is on its way and we could not be more excited! One of the best things (or the worst, depending how you look at it) about the arrival of flower buds and sunshine is spring cleaning! It’s the perfect time to rid your home of excess clutter and to welcome a new season. Since we specialize in cooking and kitchens at TorontoCooking.ca, we thought we’d s...
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New Year’s Resolutions – Inside Toronto Blog

This month we welcomed the coming of a new year and of course with that comes New Year’s resolutions. New Year’s resolutions usually result in a influx of people at the gym, eating better and being kind to your friends and family. At TorontoCooking.ca we wanted to help with your 2014 resolutions by coming up with some fun cooking ideas to get you going! You don’t have to be an expert chef...
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‘Tis the Season – Inside Toronto Blog

Tis the season of giving so I was trying to think of what I could give to you that would be useful. Now, I know you’d all love it if I gave you $10,000, that would certainly be useful, but let’s not get ahead of ourselves here… Something I thought would be a little more practical and carried through your life are some innovative and useful cooking tips and tricks that we’ve gathered at Tor...
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Thanksgiving Tips and Tricks – Inside Toronto Blog

It’s that time of year, when long lost family packs around the dining room table to catch up, share stories and of course, break bread. Thanksgiving is one of the most stressful times for a home cook, making sure everything is right – people all get along, the turkey comes out moist and everyone’s dietary needs are met. It’s times like these where we seem forget what the holiday is actuall...
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My Big Fat Greek Kitchen – Inside Toronto Blog

There are almost 60,000 Greek people living in this beautiful city, making up about 2% of our city’s population. So in celebration of one of Toronto’s favourite festivals taking place this August, Taste of the Danforth, we decided explore the wonderful world of Greek gastronomy. Greek cuisine is a great example of a Mediterranean diet, based on a variety of fresh ingredients that are low in fa...
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Gluten Free In the City – Inside Toronto Blog

Gluten Free in the City Over the past year the food industry has exploded with ‘gluten free’ labels, announcements and specialized products. For many, ‘gluten free’ seems like a current food fad, like Atkins or the Paleo diet. However, if you’re one of 2 million people who suffer from Celiac disease, eating gluten free is a way of life. Whether you are Celiac or just trying to chan...
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Toronto’s Gluten Freedom Week – A Chat with Rachael Hunt

If you live in the city of Toronto lately, or pretty much anywhere in North America, you've heard of the gluten free movement. Many people feel that going gluten free is simply just a passing food fad, or the latest diet trend, but what many don't realize is that gluten allergies have been around far longer than a few months.  Many of those who suffer from this allergy experience pain and discomf...
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Spotlight: Aboriginal Canadian Cuisine

Greatly differing in their background, culture, and traditional cuisine, the Aboriginal people can be divided into cultural groupings, each with a distinct cuisine. European settlers and traders account for the culinary influences across the regions of Canada. Most Aboriginal traditional dishes consist of fried pickerel, fried pickerel cheeks, wild rice casseroles, fried bread with bologna, ...
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Angel Foundation for Learning – Recipes and more!

angelfoundationforlearning.org Just $5 can feed a hungry child breakfast for a week. Please donate today! How One School Lunch = Five Nutritious Breakfasts Three of Toronto’s top chefs are sharing their personal, childhood-inspired school lunch recipes* here. Their only ask: as you make these lunches for your children, please consider donating to the Angel Foundatio...
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Quick and Delicious Back-to-School Lunches

After a long and beautiful summer, it feels almost strange to welcome fall, but alas we must! With most parents celebrating back to school, and most of the children dreading it, we thought that we could make the transition a bit easier by providing some quick and delicious recipes that are easy to make and fun to eat. These recipes are quick, healthy and delicious. If you're unsure... try 'em o...
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Labor Day Menu Ideas

It's 4:30 on Friday and the Labour Day long weekend is almost upon us! Whether you're staying at home, going to the cottage, camping or taking it easy, we've collected some fun and delicious recipes to help you celebrate the end of the summer and welcome the fall. Have a great weekend!! Sweet Potato and Goat Cheese Bruschetta Ingredients: serves 4-6 1 1/2 - 2 pounds sweet potatoes, p...
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Spotlight on Venezuelan Cuisine

The cuisine in Venezuela has a lot of European influences (especially Italian, Spanish and French) and is quite flavourful. Venezuelan food is one of the country's best kept secrets. There are many very unique dishes that use local roots and vegetables, infused by cumin and saffron. The most common meat dishes in Venezuela are fried and grilled fish and meats usually served with rice. Generally, ...
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Pantry Soap

Make Mother's Day complete with fragrant homemade soaps using honey, ginger, cinnamon, and other items from your cupboard. Tools and materials: Honey Ginger Cinnamon Ground clove Oatmeal Chamomile tea Yogurt cups, 1 1/4 inches deep, or cottage cheese containers From top: Honey-ginger (for each cup of glycerin, add 1 teaspoon honey and 2 pinches ginger);cinnamon-clove (2 pinches cinnamon, 2 pinc...
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