Sunday, October 28, 2018

#WFPB Cooking Demo at ShopRite

OK, today was a collaborative event with Community Board #9 and ShopRite, hosted by Ms. Angela Vita, retail dietitian at ShopRite at Bruckner Commons, and held in the upstairs community room at the ShopRite.

Obviously, the nutritional theory is important, but food shopping, food preparation and cooking is where the rubber meets the road, and it is truly a privilege to have this new ShopRite in our community with the services of a "retail dietitian." Already we have a budding, informal network which includes the plant-based doctors in the area.


The purpose today was just a food "demo," just to give people some idea of what can be done.

ShopRite offers a remarkably rich palette of foods and ingredients that are great for the plant-based cuisine and Angela has developed a shopping guide on a flyer that is available at the reception.
Angela Vita did the cooking

Salad Dressing

The Esselstyns call this 3/2/1 dressing, but I call it 1/2/3 dressing for practical reasons which I explain below.
For household use, you would commonly use a tablespoon as a measure, but depending on how many people you cook for, it could be 1/4 cup or whatever.

  • 1 tbsp Maple Syrup
  • 2 tbsp Dijon Mustard
  • 3 tbsp Balsamic Vinegar
  • optional: make it thinner with lemon/lime juice
  • optional: you can add any spices you like, chopped garlic, chopped parsley, cilantro, chilis, micro-planed ginger or turmeric, on and on. 
The bottom line is, starting from this basic mix, you can improvise a thousand different dressings, and it keeps fairly well to, for the vinegar is a good preservative, so you can make it for a few days in a row and keep it in your fridge.

Angela Vita at Work at ShopRite Bruckner

Sweet Potato Noodles

Personal note: Just this week I was given a package of sweet potato noodles, and was deliberating what I was going to make with them. Today's recipe is certainly one delicious possibility. Today we used fresh noodles from the store.

  • 1 lb raw sweet potato noodles
  • 3 cloves of garlic, smashed and cut-up
  • 1/2 cup broccoly florets
  • 1/4 cup shiitake mushrooms
  • 2 tbsp Braggs Liquid Aminos
  • 1 tsp. date sugar
  • 1/4 cup cut-up green onions in 1/8" slices
  • 1 cup of water
  • 1 tsp sesame seeds
 Whisk the Liquid Aminos with the date sugar in a cup and set it aside. Heat the pan on medium and add the noodles, broccoli and one cup of water. Cover and let steam for 3-5 minutes. Add mushrooms and liquid amino mixture. Stir together for 3-5 minutes. Add green onions and sesame seeds before serving.


Well enjoy we did!
This was the whole room, we had about 15 people.


Some of the ingredients merit comments.
  • Braggs Liquid Aminos has a lot less salt than even low sodium soy sauce, so it is a great solution, if you are trying to use less salt, which is generally the principle of the Whole Foods, Plant-Based diet. 
  • Date sugar is a good sweetener, because it is purely pulverized whole dates, so the sugar is still complete with the fibers from the fruit. The same would not apply to date syrup or even to maple syrup. All in all date sugar, or even cut-up whole dates is a great solution for a sweetener, which is sometimes needed, such as in tomato sauces, to cut the acidity.
  • As mentioned above, the 1/2/3 dressing can be the basis of a thousand different dressings. I refer to it as 1/2/3 because the balsamic comes last that way and can be used to clean the last bit of mustard from your spoon. I personally extend it usually with the juice of a lemon and a lime, and I could use anything for spices, cut-up parsley, garlic, cut-up red onions, cut-up tomatoes and/or cut-up sundried tomatoes, etc. The sky is the limit.

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