Making love in the kitchen Part 1

Friday, May 15, 2009

Yoga + delicious food + great company = one amazing night.

After work I headed to an AMAZING yoga class at Yoga Queen. If you are ever in the West end, you should definitely check out this studio. Heather was so wonderful and there were only 6 people in the class. It was challenging but revitalizing and I'm definitely feeling it (in a good way) in my muscles today.

After yoga I headed to my first cooking class with (my new hero) Meghan Telpner. I discovered Meghan's blog a few months ago and have been corresponding with her through email ever since. You can read Meghan's story, but to sum it up she was diagnosed with Crohn's, told she was going to have to go on a whole lotta meds, have surgery and basically just enjoy life and deal with her illness. Instead of going along with these recommendations she decided to move to California, change her eating, and receive acupuncture treatments and has now been symptom free for three years. Upon her return to Canada, she enrolled in nutrition school and is now a nutritionist and lifestyle consultant.

Meghan offers cooking classes each month and I treated myself to a 4-week session as a birthday gift to myself. The classes are small - 6-7 people max. and each week has a theme. Meghan discusses the week's focus and its benefits and then we get cookin'! Over the next four weeks I'm going to document the class and post pictures of all the yummy food we create. I told the other participants about my blog and that I'll be taking pictures of all the food and stuff going on in the class and they were perfectly happy to comply! (hi guys!)

Last night's class was all about the benefits of whole foods and the glycemic index. Meghan discussed some of the benefits of eating whole foods and foods from all colours on the rainbow and also reviewed the glycemic index. She gave us handouts with all the recipes were were going to make as well with a shopping list as more information about the evening's theme. Love it!

Our menu:
  • Sunflower seed pate on cucumber slices
  • Lemon & lentil vegetable soup
  • CranApple salad with honey apple dressing
  • Sweet potato kugel
  • Veggie rice paper wraps with almond dipping sauce
  • Coconut ice cream
  • Almond honey crisp
Are ya drooling yet?

We started with a demo of the rice paper wraps and each made one. 

Aren't they pretty? Colourful food is wonderful. 

They were super easy and I got the package so I can find them on my own. Rice paper wraps are gluten free (yay!) and have only 45 calories, (0 fat & fiber) making them a great vehicle for other things.

We each chose a recipe to make. I was partnered with Mark to make the sweet potato kugel

It was really easy (once we figured out the food processor) and this would be a great side dish for company or as a side for your lunch. It felt like dessert, but it wasn't and I enjoyed some leftovers for lunch today. So delicious!!! 

Everyone who attended the party was really nice and we all chatted about the food, our jobs, and various other topics (including Biggest Loser, Meghan's friend's book, macrobiotic cooking, and how they make the green coleslaw at KFC)

Everything turned out amazing! Check it out:

I was so excited to have discovered Meghan's blog and then signed up for her classes and now that I've got one under my belt I'm so excited for the rest!! I love Meghan's philosophy about food and it really aligns with the way my own eating has been going lately. I'm self taught when it comes to cooking and nutrition so learning new things is a definite plus and it's a really wonderful experience to spend an evening with lovely people preparing amazing food!! It has also been great to connect with someone who has taken such a holistic approach to their Crohn's. I recognize that everyone is different and what worked for Meghan, won't necessarily work for me, but it's just nice to have someone to relate to! I'm totally looking forward to next week's class and will be posting more recaps over the next few weeks. 


Anonymous said...

So awesome to meet you! You are delightful and totally sasstatic fashionista. We have such a great group for this round of classes. So glad you had a good time and enjoyed the yummy food. Have a great long weekend and see you Thursday!

M and A said...

where can i find the rice paper. at the thai restaurant i LOVE spring rolls!

Ashley Gibson said...

I will let you know where I find the rice paper wraps. I think Meghan said she had found them in Kensington Market (if you're in Toronto) I'm sure they should have them at various asian food markets...

Anonymous said...

Just stumbled upon your blog. My sister was just diagnosed with Crohn's so I am definitely going to refer her to your friend's blog. Thanks for sharing!

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