May 2022's Meal

Prepared by Chef Paddy Townsend
May be an image of 1 person, standing and indoor
.

The meal I have chosen is inspired by my desire to create a healthy and affordable offering for those in need in our community. At the same time, being able to bring to them the flavours and techniques of traditional Mexican food.

An effective community food system is one that is being contributed to and prepared by as many local businesses as possible to create the largest pool of resources for those in need throughout our community.

King Oyster Mushroom Plate

About the meal:

The juicy, earthy texture of glazed cremini and king oyster mushrooms makes this vegetarian plate hearty and delicious. The incorporation of Mexican red rice, refried beans, and sautéed peppers, onion, and zucchini adds texture, colour, and taste. The tanginess and kick from the pickled onions and pasilla chiles finishes the dish off to make a well rounded and flavoursome plate. 

This meal is vegetarian, gluten-free and contains cheese. Can be made vegan upon request. 

Ingredients:

Cremini and king oysters mushrooms, Mexican red rice, refried beans, sautéed vegetables (poblano peppers, red bell peppers, red onion, white onion, zucchini), pickled onions, cotija cheese, pasilla chiles.

About the meal:

The carrot korma is inspired by a very popular East Indian dish.

It is a warm and deeply flavorful dish with tropical notes of coconut and cashews. Slow roasted carrots provide a unique sweetness to this typically heavy meal and bursts of fresh cilantro helps the move from dark winter weather to warm spring sun. It's served on a base of aged basmati rice.

This meal is vegan and contains cashews.

Ingredients:

Carrot, tomato, cashew, oil, garlic, spices, seasonings, coconut milk, cilantro, basmati rice.

Kale Palak Paneer

About the meal:

The vibrant green kale makes a beautiful addition to this vegetarian classic. Aromatic garam masala stewed palak creates a refreshing base to the protein packed creamy buffalo milk soft cheese. Aged basmati rice completes this exotic summer ready meal with the nutrients of homegrown community sustaining produce.

This meal is vegetarian and includes dairy.

Ingredients:

Kale, spinach, paneer, cilantro, butter, oil, garlic, spices & seasonings, cream, onion, basmati rice

April 2022's Meal

Prepared by Chef Kay Miller.

Chef Kay Miller has over a decade of experience in the food industry. She has her own catering company, Braai Butter, that specializes in South African food. Braai is a South African word for BBQ and Butter incorporates her pastry background.

Wanting to be a part of a better food system, Chef Kay accepted an opportunity to be the community chef at Hope House. As part of her role, she also supports Hope House and their partnerships in community with organizations like Parkwood Gardens Neighbourhood Group.

Chef Kay prepared two meals for us:

Carrot Korma

About the meal:

The carrot korma is inspired by a very popular East Indian dish.

It is a warm and deeply flavorful dish with tropical notes of coconut and cashews. Slow roasted carrots provide a unique sweetness to this typically heavy meal and bursts of fresh cilantro helps the move from dark winter weather to warm spring sun. It's served on a base of aged basmati rice.

This meal is vegan and contains cashews.

Ingredients:

Carrot, tomato, cashew, oil, garlic, spices, seasonings, coconut milk, cilantro, basmati rice.

Kale Palak Paneer

About the meal:

The vibrant green kale makes a beautiful addition to this vegetarian classic. Aromatic garam masala stewed palak creates a refreshing base to the protein packed creamy buffalo milk soft cheese. Aged basmati rice completes this exotic summer ready meal with the nutrients of homegrown community sustaining produce.

This meal is vegetarian and includes dairy.

Ingredients:

Kale, spinach, paneer, cilantro, butter, oil, garlic, spices & seasonings, cream, onion, basmati rice

 

March 2022's Meal

Prepared by Chef Johl Whiteduck Ringuette.

Chef Johl is Anishnaabeg and Algonquin. He was born in North Bay, Ontario, and his grandmother is from Nippissing First Nation.
He is the owner of NishDish Marketeria & Catering, a Toronto restaurant focused on traditional Anishnaabeg food, and also the founder of the Ojibiikaan Indigenous Cultural Network, an organization advocating for Indigenous Food Sovereignty.
Education about Indigenous Food Sovereignty is an important part of NishDish and is part of Johl's passion to rebuild Indigenous food lines.
It's part of the journey of trying to get everybody - Indigenous people and non-Indigenous people - to turn our consciousness to our relationship to food, our relationship to land, our relationship to plants, and what it takes to have an understanding of that balance.

Chef Johl prepared two meals for us:

Three Sisters Stew & Wild Rice - With Elk Sausage

About the meal:

“The Three Sisters (corn, beans and squash) have been cultivated together for many thousands of years by Indigenous farmers in the traditional agro-ecology - they provide a complete nutrition for the body and when grown in this way they also nourish the soil.”

"The ‘Three Sisters’ is also a teaching about the different roles that each one brings, how they thrive together and mutually benefit each other. Stories and teachings of the ‘Three Sisters’ story are shared by many Indigenous traditions."

“Manoomin (wild rice) is an important part of the original diet of the original people on the land, and these food lines no longer exist, so they have to be completely restored."

“From the Anishinaabe creation story, and one of the reasons we got here to the territories of the Great Lakes, we know that Nanabozho led us to the wild rice waters during a time of starvation. We began to follow those paths of wild rice, which is one of the reasons we're known as the wild rice people.”

Ingredients:

We don't normally sell dishes with meat, but we've made an exception for our March meal as Elk is part of the Anishinaabe diet. Sourced from Indigenous communities where possible.

Three Sisters Stew: Butternut squash, green beans, sweet corn, garlic, vegetable broth, dill, olive oil, salt, and pepper.

Wild Rice Casserole: Wild rice, brown rice, celery, mushrooms, mixed peppers, rice vinegar, sunflower oil, parsley, salt and pepper.

Elk Sausage: Elk, cranberries, chicken fat, herbs. This is a sample size portion of Elk Sausage.

Three Sisters Stew & Wild Rice - With Black Beans

Ingredients:

A vegan dish. Sourced from the Indigenous communities where possible.

Three Sisters Stew: Butternut squash, green beans, sweet corn, garlic, vegetable broth, dill, olive oil, salt, and pepper.

Wild Rice Casserole: Wild rice, brown rice, celery, mushrooms, mixed peppers, rice vinegar, sunflower oil, parsley, salt and pepper.

Black Beans: Black beans, spices, onion, olive oil.

 

February 2022's Meal

Prepared by Chef Yasi Zorlutuna.
Chef Yasi has been working in the hospitality industry for over 20 years including running her own restaurant, teaching hands-on cooking classes, and large scale cooking at the University of Guelph.
At the beginning of the pandemic, Chef Yasi worked with the team at the SEED producing the meals for their emergency home delivery program.
Most recently she has been working with the GNSC and Our Food Future to launch a Community Food Truck that addresses food insecurity.
Chef Yasi prepared two soups for us:
Lentil & Tahini Soup:

About the meal:

"The soup is inspired by a Moroccan stew and it is a party in your mouth. There is texture, flavour, and the tahini brings that bit of creaminess. I love the combination of cumin and cinnamon together because it makes it both sweet and spicy."

"I use this dish in my cooking to show the amazingness that can be created from plant-based ingredients. The flavours are exciting and adding the pomegranate molasses, olive oil, and fresh herb finish brings it home and will make you feel energized." 

The soup is 24oz (a double serving) and includes a side of flatbread from SAFA Middle Eastern in Guelph.

Ingredients:

Vegan. Sourced from Hope House's farm or from Ontario when possible.

Lentils, onions, carrots, butternut squash, potatoes, celery, tomato, vegetable broth, dry mint, chili flakes, cinnamon sticks, cumin, coriander, walnuts, parsley, tahini, garlic, ginger, pomegranate molasses. 

Minted Yogurt & Chickpea Soup:

About the meal:

"The combination of the sour from the yogurt and the freshness from the mint is soothing and it's a soup you can serve in the dead of winter to warm you up and make you feel refreshed."

"The mint, yogurt, and red pepper paste uses flavours from Turkish cuisine and it reminds me of my aunt Bahar who I visited every summer as a child in Turkey. She made this Minted Yogurt soup for me after I had my first child, so this soup to me feels like that love and maternal care."

The soup is 24oz (a double serving) and includes a side of flatbread from SAFA Middle Eastern in Guelph.

Ingredients:

Vegetarian. Sourced from Hope House's farm or from Ontario when possible.

Chickpeas, carrots, onions, vegetable broth, butter, mint, potatoes, parsley, celery, yogurt, red pepper paste, flour, white rice, lemon. Served with flatbread. 

 

January 2022's Meal

Prepared by Chef Dan Baker.

Chef Dan Baker is the Executive Chef of Delicious Direct and an avid Hope House supporter. He has over 30 years of experience in food service and is a Red Seal Certified Chef.

Dan created Delicious Direct to offer nutritious and full course meals at an affordable price in the Guelph area. All recipes are made using fresh, seasonal, and local ingredients, and are reviewed by health care professionals to ensure the meals are healthy and balanced.

Chef Dan prepared the Black Bean Loaf & Risotto for us:

Black Bean Loaf & Risotto:

"Our Black Bean Loaf is a savoury take on the classic meatloaf dish. It is drizzled with a delicious homemade marinara sauce with a side of cinnamon glazed carrots. To balance the meal, we've prepared a creamy steel-cut oat Risotto mixed with Hope House butternut squash and kale."

"This is a filling winter meal made with healthy and local ingredients." 

Ingredients:

Vegetarian. Sourced from Hope House's farm or from Ontario when possible.

Black Bean Loaf with Marinara: Black Turtle Beans, Celery, Pepper, Garlic, Worchestershire Sauce, Tomato, Egg, Bread Crumbs, Seasoning, Tomatoes, Spanish Onion

Risotto & Carrots: Red Onion, Butternut Squash, Kale, Steel-cut Oats, Garlic, Parmesan Cheese, Butter, Lemon Juice, Seasoning, Carrots

December 2021's Meal

Prepared by Chef Kay Miller.

Chef Kay is Hope House's new Community Chef.

With deep roots in South African cooking and few avenues for practice, Kay Miller focused her decade long career working among the best rated restaurants in Guelph learning the different styles, techniques and flavor profiles of Canadian culture.

With award winning fusion recipes and an unfaltering dedication to scratch-based cooking, she rose to running several successful locations where she began consulting on new menu designs and food service branding.

Chef Miller prepared the Squash & Peanut Winter Stew for us:

Squash & Peanut Winter Stew:

"Our stew has warm familiar flavours of roasted peanuts infused with exotic smokey coriander seed and Hope House's delicata squash. This meal is made entirely of local products and a vegan relief to heavy Christmas fare overload."

Ingredients:

Vegan. All ingredients sourced from Hope House's farm or within Southern Ontario. Containers are BPI and ASTM Certified compostable.

Carrot, onion, squash, garlic, tomato, micro-greens (corn, cilantro, pea, broccoli), brown lentils, roasted peanuts, coriander seed, vegetable stock, cornstarch, apple cider.

 

November 2021's Meal

Prepared by Chef Jonathan Gushue.

 

Jonathan is one of Canada's most decorated chefs.


He has been recognized as Ontario's and Canada's Chef of the Year. He was a competitor on Iron Chef Canada. He was formerly the Executive Chef for Elora Mill, Langdon Hall, and Fogo Island Inn.

His proudest career accomplishment is working with and training chefs, some for over 10 years. He has enjoyed seeing them grow, change, and now run their own kitchens.

Chef Gushue prepared two meals for us:

Squash & Sage Lasagna:

"It's a warm spiced fall harvest lasagna with sweet roasted butternut sliced with lacinato kale and blanketed in a caramelized garlic sauce, topped with autumn sage. Designed to warm your soul after a cold Canadian day."

Ingredients:

Vegetarian, 100% Made in Guelph.

Ricotta, shredded cheese, lasagna sheets, butternut squash, olive oil, brown sugar, butter, garlic, flour, whole milk, grated nutmeg, kale, basil, pecan pieces, fresh sage, salt, pepper.

Root Vegetable Curry:

“The vegetable curry is our most well-rounded dish, it has a bit of spice but it’s not spicy. Because of the mustard seed and ginger, it leans a little towards the bright or aggressive, but again, it’s balanced really well with the tomato and also the apricot. It’s comforting and it’s relaxing.”
“We started with onion and garlic as a nice base. It’s more of a substantial dish in the way of flavour. We added turmeric in there to lift it up and it also mellows out the tomato in our curry. The dried apricot adds a bit of fun and gives it the appearance of a more sweet and sour dish. The shredded coconut at the end gives it a nutty edge. I love texture in food so the toasted shredded coconut adds that bit of crunch.”
Ingredients:
Vegan, 100% Made in Guelph.
Root vegetables (carrot, turnip), potato, garlic, onion, ginger, curry powder, mustard seed, turmeric, crushed tomato, dried apricot, shredded coconut.

 

 

October 2021's Meal

Prepared by Crafty Ramen

 

A message from Jared & Miki, founders of Crafty Ramen:

"Crafty Ramen was founded in a city that has supported us so greatly from the beginning. It's important that we take time to participate in our community and be part of a meaningful initiative like The Better Food Company. If a project benefits our community, it benefits us all."

Crafty Ramen prepared The Harvest Bowl for us:

The Harvest Bowl:

 "The name speaks for itself - it is a harvest bowl. It looks and tastes and feels like the harvest, in a bowl of ramen. It has the autumn colours in it, the browns and the greens. When you bite into the wonton itself, it has the yellow of the corn, and the flavours of the potatoes and onions."

"You also have the cabbage and the carrots of the slaw, and a beautiful piece of squash to top it all off."

Ingredients:

Vegan, all harvest produce grown in Guelph.

Thin noodles, vegetarian stock, miso vegetarian broth, kohlrabi & carrot slaw, squash, wonton skins, potatoes, corn, onions, apple.

September 2021's Meal

Prepared by Executive Chef Jonathan Gushue

 

Jonathan is one of Canada's most decorated chefs.


He has been recognized as Ontario's and Canada's Chef of the Year. He was a competitor on Iron Chef Canada. He was formerly the Executive Chef for Elora Mill, Langdon Hall, and Fogo Island Inn.

His proudest career accomplishment is working with and training chefs, some for over 10 years. He has enjoyed seeing them grow, change, and now run their own kitchens.

"I believe in sense-of-place cooking This means cooking using the food and the cues around you. For example, we decided on using carrots. But what grows around the carrot? Are there underground streams connecting to other vegetables? Local is also more than just the product, it's also the people. You can learn a lot from the area. It's a cycle of shared knowledge."


Jonathan prepared three meals for us, which sold out in 72 hours!

 

Beet & Lentil Stew

"If you’re looking for a nutritious and ultimately all-around satisfying dish, our Beet & Lentil Stew is it. It’s got sweet, salty and nutty flavours, and a great texture."
“To me, a beet is totally complete. It has a lot of character and a lot of natural perceived acidity that balances the sweetness. I love the way that the sweetness of the beets goes with the walnuts and the cumin, combined with the backdrop finish of the fresh orange juice, which brightens up the entire dish. You get everything in this dish. The lentils provide an instant energy, and we finish it off with feta, which is grimy and salty.”
Ingredients:
Vegetarian, 100% Made in Guelph.
Beets, walnuts, cumin, orange juice, feta, kale, lentils.
 

Root Vegetable Curry

“The vegetable curry is our most well-rounded dish, it has a bit of spice but it’s not spicy. Because of the mustard seed and ginger, it leans a little towards the bright or aggressive, but again, it’s balanced really well with the tomato and also the apricot. It’s comforting and it’s relaxing.”
“We started with onion and garlic as a nice base. It’s more of a substantial dish in the way of flavour. We added turmeric in there to lift it up and it also mellows out the tomato in our curry. The dried apricot adds a bit of fun and gives it the appearance of a more sweet and sour dish. The shredded coconut at the end gives it a nutty edge. I love texture in food so the toasted shredded coconut adds that bit of crunch.”
Ingredients:
Vegan, 100% Made in Guelph.
Root vegetables (carrot, turnip), potato, garlic, onion, ginger, curry powder, mustard seed, turmeric, crushed tomato, dried apricot, shredded coconut.

Carrot & Almond Chili

“Some food may slow you down, but this isn’t it. This is a dish that will provide you the energy you need for the day. It’s uplifting. The carrot is the focus of this meal. We added the white beans and almonds in there for your protein, and the potatoes were added for texture.”
"We wanted to bring all these things together, the garlic, especially the ginger, cumin, coriander, and even the cinnamon, to help bring out the flavours of these carrots. We added some warmer spices, and we also added some brighter flavours like the fresh chili. We framed this like a southwestern chili.”
Ingredients:
Vegan, 100% Made in Guelph.
Carrot, almond, potato, white beans, onion, garlic, ginger, fresh chili, cumin, coriander ground, cinnamon, raisins, brown sugar, red wine vinegar.