Canadian Thanksgiving: Homemade Cranberry Sauce with Ginger and Pear

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We all know how much I love to host, and that I jump at any opportunity to fill my home with those I cherish most.  So needless to say I wrangled 15 of my nearest and dearest to come celebrate Canadian Thanksgiving with us.  Since moving to NYC I have only gotten more patriotic so naturally I love showcasing some of our Canadian culture (even if Canadian thanksgiving is merely a carbon copy of the American version save for the pilgrims and Plymouth rock). This year we were so, so fortunate to have two very exceptional Canadians in town visiting, bringing the Canadian representation up to five speculator people.  We love guests, and getting a chance to connect with Rachel and Courtney was a real treat (thanks guys for playing with us!)

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We had an amazing time eating ourselves into a turkey coma while savoring the exceptional company.   Now undertaking an entire turkey feast is always a touch daunting because I have spent every Thanksgivings at an my aunt’s home.  So this year not only was I longing to be there to snuggle all the new babies, but I was very rightfully concerned that my meal just wouldn’t be up to snuff.  That woman knows how to host something fierce, and so the bar of excellence has been set high.

However, I managed to pull out a meal that was lauded by everyone.  Not only was everyone angling for seconds (the highest form of praise) but is was a super healthy supper that met all the varying dietary needs of our beautiful guests. As such, most of the dishes were either vegan, paleo or gluten free.  I will be be sharing a bunch of these recipes over the course of the next few days and weeks (some Americans you can steal them for your approaching Thanksgiving feasts).   Furthermore, I would also like to give myself some self praise in that this was the first time I tackled homemade bread and cheese cake without my Kitchenaid mixer (which is safely stowed in storage back home) which is no easy feat.  This whole meal was prepared from scratch the tech-free, old school way.  So needless to say I got my upper body workout in. Overall the meal was a success, but by far the brightest part of the evening was being surround by our New York family.  Although it didn’t completely erase my homesickness for those back home, at least my heart and home was filled with so much love nevertheless. Continue reading “Canadian Thanksgiving: Homemade Cranberry Sauce with Ginger and Pear”

Roasted Fall Veggie Quesadillas

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I am on a winning streak this week with new recipes.  This creation came after going for all you can eat quesadillas and margaritas at Amigos in Morningside heights last week with three dear friends.  Thank you Elliot for being in town and being our excuse to stuff ourselves to breaking point on Mexican food.  Come back soon.

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I for one had never had a margarita, but after last tuesday I can call myself a fan of this grown up version of a slurpee.  However, better than those frozen margaritas were the quesadillas served alongside them.  So after eating my fill (and I mean my actual fill) and still craving more I decided to try my hand at a healthy recreation and lucked out with exceptional success.  So enjoy these quick, simple and hearty variation of veggie quesadillas.  Continue reading “Roasted Fall Veggie Quesadillas”

Reader Creations: Joanna Eats

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The past few weeks I have begun a new segment where I post reader renditions of my recipes.

Today’s reader is extra special because not only is she great encouragement for what what we do here at The Jordan Project, but she herself is also undertaking a nutrition program, making her an exceptional resource for promoting a healthy lifestyle. So check her out, follow her Instagram and in the process glean great meal ideas, educated information on healthy eating. This woman will leave you inspired. Not only is she one hot mama of two little ones and a dedicated wife but she still manages to find time to cook healthy meals for her family and maintain an active lifestyle. Like really?

Recipes highlighted by Joanna:

Hearty Chicken and Vegetable Soup

Energizing Green Soup

Cobb Salad with a Tangy Oil Free Garlic-Mustard Vinaigrette

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You may have noticed the onslaught of new delectable recipes up over the past month.  Classes didn’t start again until last week so I have had a little more time to putter around in the kitchen.  It has been fun, but now I am back in full swing of grad school madness so the numbers may dwindle in the coming weeks.

On Thursday nights my classes don’t start until late, so my truly wonderful friend Vanessa came over for dinner to help me kill some time.  I kept it simple with this filling, substantial salad that is packed with just the right proteins and nutrition that your brain needs to sit through two hour evening courses. The best part is that it is simple to accommodate all dietary restraints and still leave your diners happy.  Vegan? Skip the meat, egg and cheese and the yams and avocado still taste divine.  Vegetarian? forgo the meat and the resulting salad will leave you just as satisfied.   Strict Paleo? set aside the cheese and yams and what you have left is more or less pure protein for your carnivorous needs.

So however you elect to eat-enjoy. Continue reading “Cobb Salad with a Tangy Oil Free Garlic-Mustard Vinaigrette”

Hearty Chicken and Vegetable Soup

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When Jay and I started planning our move to the states the first query from friends and family was about healthcare.  As in how were we going to tackle the starkly different system.  After our voyage home for the holidays, the plane ride left me with a burst blood vessel which turned into a painful but run of the mill ear infection that landed us in an NYC emerge late last Thursday night.  Now I should preface my detailing of our first healthcare encounter with that Jay and I are crazy fortunate to have spectacular health coverage through his company, which makes all the difference.

photoThe hospital and doctors were of similar quality to back home.  As far as atmosphere goes it was nice to have a private room to wait in rather than a curtained off quadrant of  bustling emergency department.  We did note a shorter wait time and an extra level of thoughtfulness on part of the  staff as they spent a touch more time with us that we have been used to.   To cement this feeling of extreme attention to care we even got a call the next day from Columbia health to check on us because the hospital had taken the time to call them to inform them one of their students was in the evening prior. However, the true free nature of the Canadian system is hard to beat, and the fact that it is universally free for every member of our society is not only wonderful but admirable.  The real concerns come for Americans who don’t have access to health care and can’t afford private coverage, which I think is where the heart of the debate truly lies.

At the end of the day the hospital in our neighborhood was great and we left well cared for.  Besides, the hospital even had a twitter account and they favorited my lobby room waiting tweet. So the way I see it is that is winning no matter how you swing it.

As for now, I am on the mend but Jay has picked up the flu complete with fever and chills. So in our household we are waiting out this snow storm by taking the time to nurture ourselves back to health by with a good books, a stream of Frasier episodes, hot baths and nutritious eats.  This is a healthy twist of a classic get well soon chicken soup.  If you are vegan or vegetarian you can simple skip the chicken and it will remaining equally as scrumptious and nutritious.  This is a hearty, savory filling meal that is perfect for a cold winters day or any time that you are feeling a little under the weather.  Enjoy. Continue reading “Hearty Chicken and Vegetable Soup”

Creamy Coconut, Sweet Potato and Avocado Soup

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Everyone in this city is fascinated with juicing (not the performance enhancing drugs), and we are frequently asked if we partake in such pleasures.  I  have a smoothie each morning for breakfast but I don’t think that would constitute me a juicer.  What we do in fact do though is make everything from scratch.  Be is hummus or salsa to pasta sauce or soup, we whip it without using extra sugars, oils or any manufactured additives and preservatives.  We eat whole foods, and make most of our meals in house so we don’t do anything to supplement our nutritional needs in terms of different diets and cleanses.  Tonight’s soup is one such example of this philosophy, which I shared with my lovely friend Madeline, as we caught up on the coming semester and our time over the holidays. So if you want a nutrient rich, hearty, veggie laden meal that is as tasty as it is healthy this would be the soup for you. Enjoy 🙂 Continue reading “Creamy Coconut, Sweet Potato and Avocado Soup”

Sweet Butternut Squash Soup

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It’s fall in the city, and it is chilly outside. So inside we Jordan’s are keeping it warm and cozy.  Butternut Squash soup my favorite soup, and one of the best ways to stay toasty.  For the longest time I never attempted it on my own because I had written it off as too complex and time consumptive.  My mom also makes a killer butternut soup, that even still mine can’t hold a candle to.  Although maybe that is just the sentimentality inside me speaking since I tend to whip up this soup on the days I miss her a little more than usual.  Nonetheless, this soup isn’t complicated and is actually pretty efficient to make.  A quick chop, boil and purée and you are set to serve.   Enjoy. Continue reading “Sweet Butternut Squash Soup”

Roasted Eggplant and Goat Cheese Pizza

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Well midterms have started, and as such my diet has succumb to diners of ease and a few too many carbs.  Tonight I decided my body needed some real fuel to tackle the coming week, and my mind was in desperate need of a distraction from the books.  So I decided to try my hand at a little culinary creativity and to devise our own, nutrient rich version of pizza.  We loved it, although sadly it was sufficiently efficient to concoct so it wasn’t the time killer, procrastinating activity I was craving. So as such I am back at it, so wish me luck this week. I think I will need it. Continue reading “Roasted Eggplant and Goat Cheese Pizza”

Roasted Yam and Avocado Salad

It has been awhile since my last post.  We have been busy this summer in the best possible way.  We have been..

Welcoming new babies

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Catching up with old (amazing) friends

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Having family time before our big move

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Celebrating new marriages of very old friends

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Packing and planning our road trip to New York

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and enjoying the lake and saying our good byes

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In the midst of it all we have craved simple, quick meals that mandate very few ingredients so we could clean out our fridge pre-move.  This Roasted Yam and Avocado salad is just that and is loaded with flavour and freshness.  This salads minimal  list of ingredients makes it prefect for a last minute market shop after a luxurious day at the beach.  So when life is filled with all sorts of good things and your time for meal prep is limited by your desire to have fun give this recipe a try.

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Continue reading “Roasted Yam and Avocado Salad”