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Cooking Up Kalettes

Post written by contributor Katie Bartel

Okay, so let’s be honest here for a second shall we. I am not a master of the kitchen, not even close. Before my husband, I lived on omelettes and grilled cheese sandwiches. But that’s not to say the kitchen doesn’t fascinate me. I grew up with parents who both are fantastic in the cooking realm, I have always been drawn to recipe magazines, and when on maternity leave a few years ago, after being gifted a subscription to Cook’s Country by my pops, I embarked on a 12-month challenge that had me trying my hand in the savoury world once a month. And you know what, I totally I didn’t poison us! Quite the feat. Still, though, unless it’s a birthday, or some other special sort of event, it is rare that I am the one with chef’s apron on in our house.

Well folks, that is about to change.

A new challenge has been steeping in my brain for about a month now – and it’s all about the fresh, local, awesomeness of the Royal City Farmers Market. Every market day, I have committed to seeking out the strangest, unique, most oddball ingredient I can find, and working a recipe from it.

First up: kalettes.


Have you heard of kalettes? I hadn’t, not until I showed up at Ossome Acres’ booth on the morning of Feb. 6 and saw these little puffs of purple-greens. Hey, what are those, I asked. Why, kalettes of course – the love child of kale and Brussels sprouts. W’oh! Who knew?

Although the brainchild of this hybrid was developed 15 years ago in Europe, it wasn’t debuted until 2010 and only hit North American soil two years ago. And still, you’d be hard pressed to find it in grocery stores, said Noella Oss of Ossome Acres, a Chilliwack farm that prides itself on standing out with its crops. “I’m pretty sure we’re the only ones growing it out here.”


A mix of nutty and sweet, chewy and crunchy, these guys are good raw, roasted, blanched and steamed, said Oss. They’re huge in fibre; it doesn’t take much to fill a belly. In fact, one $4 bag got us five meals worth.

And the flavour, “is so nice and sweet right now because of the snow and frost,” said Oss. “They’re full of concentrated sugars.”

So, how did I use them?

I threw a few rosettes into a kitchen sink soup, lightly roasted a bunch on the barbecue with sea salt oil and balsamic vinegar, (I think they may even be better than kale chips!) and put together this sweet and salty salad from www.kalettes.com – they EVEN have their own website!


Happy kalettes eating my friends.

Recipe: Kalettes Salad with Apples and Bacon

5 oz Kalettes
1/8 c. apple cider vinegar
1/4 tsp. salt, divided
1/8 c. extra virgin olive oil
1 apple, cored and sliced
2 slices bacon
1 onion, sliced

1. Slice stem end from Kalettes, allowing some leaves to fall loose and leaving centre leaves intact. In salad bowl, add Kalettes and drizzle with vinegar. Sprinkle with 1/8 tsp. salt and toss to coat. Set aside for 10 minutes.

2. In a skillet over medium, add 2 slices of bacon. Cook until brown and slightly crunchy. Remove bacon from pan, leaving grease, and drain on paper towel. Add sliced onion to pan and sauté over medium high until carmelized, about 10-15 minutes. When bacon is cool, crumble into small pieces.

3. In a measuring cup, add extra virgin olive oil, 1/8 tsp. salt, and pepper to taste. Shake or stir to combine dressing. Add the sliced apple, bacon and onions to bowl with Kalettes. Pour the dressing over the salad and toss to coat.

Slow Cooker Chicken & Roasted Onion Gravy


By Elizabeth Whalley, RHN

Celebrate Earth Day this month by making your kitchen its most sustainable! Animal products are one of the areas you can easily make a big impact. I’ll admit it, chicken breast is pretty tasty, but by buying a whole chicken not only are you able to take advantage of every part of the bird, you can also be sure you’re making the most economical choice for your grocery budget.

This recipe has quickly become a new favourite of mine. With a little planning (and not a lot of prep) a roast chicken dinner can be achieved even on a weeknight!

Slow Cooker Chicken & Roasted Onion Gravy

1 large cooking onion, roughly sliced
1 whole chicken, giblets removed
6 leaves fresh sage
2 sprigs fresh rosemary, stems removed
2 sprigs fresh thyme, stems removed
1 clove garlic, minced
1 tsp black pepper
1 tsp salt


1. Cover the bottom of your crock pot with the chopped onion.

2. Rub chicken with garlic, salt and pepper and place on top of onions. Place herbs on top of the chicken and cook on high for 4-6 hours until juices run clear.

3. Place chicken in a roasting pan and let the skin brown under you broiler for 5-10 minutes. Check on the bird frequently, the skin goes from golden to black very quickly.

4. While the the chicken is browning pour the onion and juices from the crockpot into a sauce pan and set on medium.

5. Use an immersion blender to blend onions until smooth. Season to taste with salt and pepper. Voila thick (gluten-free) gravy in a snap!

Serve with lots of roasted veggies or a simple green salad. Stretch this bird a little further and make a flavourful stock from the leftover bones, get my favourite recipe here.

Red Velvet Smoothie

IMG_1656-0.JPGBy Elizabeth Whalley, RHN

Show your body some love this Valentine’s day by adding a few beets to your market bag. As a storage crop this is one of the few veggies we are lucky enough to find a market stalls all year long. Here’s the shortlist of reasons why nothing beats the humble beet, especially in your morning smoothie;

  • They add a bright pop of colour to any recipe and where there’s colour you’re sure to find lots of antioxidants. Betalains the phytonutrient unique to beets has incredible antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties.
  • Show your liver some love with beets! A side from bitter greens, beets are one of the best vegetables for liver detox – helping to flush out toxins and process hormones more efficiently.
  • Adding a serving of veggies to your morning meal is a great way to boost your fibre intake for the day and keep your cholesterol levels in check.
  • They are incredibly versatile! Beets are delicious grated raw into salads, oven-roasted, pureed into soups. They can even help to add a touch of sweetness along with their amazing colour to baking.

Red Velvet Smoothie


  • 1/2 medium beet, washed peeled*
  • 2 medjool dates
  • raw cacao powder
  • 3/4 frozen strawberries
  • 3/4 almond milk
  • 1/2 tsp pure vanilla extract
  • 2 tbsp hemp seeds

*For this recipe I like to keep my beets washed, peeled, chopped and ready to go in the freezer


1. Combine all ingredient in a blender starting with the beets, strawberries and dates.

2. Blend all ingredients until smooth.

3. Slurp up while it’s still cold!

Makes approximately 2 cups.


Hearty Carrot Lentil Salad


By Elizabeth Whalley, RHN

This salad is the perfect compliment to any New Year’s resolution whether it’s to eat more veggies, be more organized with your meal prep or trim your waistline. Unlike other salads filled with fragile greens, a base of carrots means it can be dressed ahead. Plus, the addition of lentils and walnuts give this salad a healthful hit of fibre, protein and omega-3 fats, so it’s sure to keep you satisfied. Go ahead, make a big batch and enjoy it for lunch or as a side for dinner all week long.

Quick Tip: Skip the canned lentils to save money and avoid BPAs from can linings. Make lentils in a big batch and freeze to easily add them to all your recipes. Freeze the cooked and cooled lentils on a cookie sheet before transferring to a freezer bag, so they don’t freeze in an unmanageable clump.

Hearty Carrot Lentil Salad

• 2 large carrots, grated
• 1 cup cooked or sprouted lentils
• ½ cup walnuts, toasted
• 1/2 cup raisins
• 2 green onions, chopped
• ¼ cup chopped cilantro
• ½ tsp cumin

• 2 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
• Juice of a lemon
• 1 tsp maple syrup
• ½ tsp salt
• 1 clove garlic

Crush garlic with the heel of your knife. Combine all of the dressing ingredients in a jar or bottle and shake vigorously. Set aside to let the flavour of the garlic infuse.
In a large bowl combine the carrots, lentils, walnuts, raisins, onion, cilantro and cumin and toss until well combined. Drizzle your desired amount of dressing ensuring to strain out the garlic. Serve.

Spiced Pumpkin Pancakes


By Elizabeth Whalley, RHN

Last week I could not believe my eyes when when I found a pantry staple I had written off as a “must buy imported” at the Red Barn Plants & Produce stall. Ken was offering up a Maple Ridge grown variety of my favourite rhizome… Ginger!

Ginger packs quite the nutritional punch for such a humble root. Not only does it boost powerful immune boosting properties, but it calms tummy troubles like nausea even that associated with motion or morning sickness. This rhizome also works as a potent anti-inflammatory and has been studied for its effectiveness in relieving the pain associated with arthritis to boot.

The pungent market root is so fresh that even the skin can be grated right into this recipe. Plus is its spicy flavour is the perfect compliment to October’s staple squash varietal: pumpkin. Ken from Red Barn suggests saving the shots in your freezer to add an extra zing to your next cup of tea. The fresher the ginger the more potent its effects, so be sure to stock up at the last market of the season because you can’t get any fresher!

Spiced Pumpkin Pancakes


  • 2 eggs, beaten
  • 1 cup fresh pumpkin puree*
  • 1 tbsp maple syrup
  • 2 tbsp molasses
  • 1 inch fresh ginger, grated (approximately 1 tbsp)
  • 1 tsp cinnamon
  • 1/4 tsp ground cloves
  • 1/4 tsp ground nutmeg
  • 1/4 tsp sea or rock salt
  • 1 tsp aluminum free baking powder
  • 1 1/2 cups spelt flour
  • water, milk or nut milk
  • butter


In a medium bowl, combine eggs, pumpkin, maple syrup, molasses, spices, baking powder and salt and whisk until pumpkin has reached a smooth consistency.

Add in spelt flour a
1/2 cup at a time, thinning with enough water to reach a consistency that will easily form pancake rounds in your frying pan (approximately 1 cup).

Heat 1/2 tbsp of butter in a frying pan over medium heat. Spoon 1/4 cup portions of the batter into the hot pan. A spatula may come in handy for smoothing out the batter as it can be quite thick. Flip once the sheen from the batter has disappeared and the underside is gold brown and cook for another few minutes. Continue until all batter is cooked adding more butter if necessary.

Top off with butter, maple syrup and toasted pumpkin seeds and enjoy!

*For simple instructions on making puree from your market pumpkin check out Smitten Kitchen’s how to here.


Double the batter when making your Sunday breakfast and store the extras in the freezer for convenient home-made toaster pancakes all week long!



No-Bake Gluten-Free Stone Fruit Crisp


By Elizabeth Whalley, RHN

It’s the most wonderful time of the year! Yes, that’s right, peach season tops my list of best seasons of the year. Stone fruits like cherries, peaches and plums, are original BC superfoods, that unlike broccoli, you can actually get excited about eating. Their range of deep colours like brilliant reds and sunny oranges signify their antioxidant punch – simply put they help us too stay looking young and promote good health. Plums and their unique antioxidants especially, have been shown to help protect against memory decline. Stone fruits are also full of fibre : great for improving digestive health, and are super hydrating: essential for a midsummer heat wave.

Take full advantage of the peaches and other stone fruits popping up at almost every produce stall the market features with this quick recipe that makes the perfect breakfast, dessert or snack!

No-Bake Gluten Free Stone Fruit Crisp



  • 4 cups stone fruit of your choice (I used a mixture of cherries, apricots and peaches)
  • 1 Tbsp honey or maple syrup

Crisp Topping

  • 1 cup almonds
  • 1 cup hazelnuts
  • 3 Tbsp honey or maple syrup
  • 2 Tbsp room temperature butter
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • ¼ tsp sea or rock salt
  • 1 tsp cinnamon


Preheat oven to 200⁰F. Place nuts on a baking sheet and bake for 15 to 20 minutes, shaking the tray every 5 minutes to avoid burning.

Wash and slice fruit in to bite-sized piece and mix together in a large bowl along with the honey. Spread evenly into a medium-sized casserole dish and set aside.

Combine all of the crisp topping ingredients in a food processor or blender and pulse until you have reached a very grainy consistency. Top off the fruit with the crisp topping, pressing the mixture down with a spatula to smooth it out evenly.

This dish works well as a sweet breakfast or a no bake dessert, but if a crumble hot from the oven is more appealing pop it into a 325⁰F oven for approximately 45 minutes and top off with extra thick strained yogurt.

 Adapted from ohsheglows.com


Zucchini Pad Thai


By Elizabeth Whalley, RHN

Has the July heat got you sweating over the thought of turning on your oven? Beat the heat with this week with a fresh take on an ethnic classic: my twist on traditional Pad Thai that can easily be modified to suit any vegan pallet.

The unconventional use of smoked tofu in this recipe is a great way to satisfy any protein craving. Even if you’re not a tofu lover I suggest you seek some out and give it a try, you may be pleasantly surprised. Worried about genetically modified soy? Go for organic soy as GM ingredients cannot be certified organic in Canada.

Opting for raw veggie noodles instead of the traditional rice noodles makes for a light, refreshing and super hydrating entrée – great for a supper on the patio or packed up for lunch!

Zucchini Pad Thai


  • 1 Medium Zucchini
  • 1 cup Bean Sprouts
  • 2 Medium Carrots
  • ½ Red Pepper, sliced
  • ½ Smoked Organic Tofu, cubed*
  • 2 Tbsp Cilantro, chopped
  • 2 Tbsp Thai Basil, chopped
  • 1-2 Spring Onions, sliced on the diagonal
  • ¼ cup Roasted Peanuts
  • ½ Lime, reserve the other ½ for the sauce

*Option: substitute tofu with 2 eggs beaten with 3 drops of tamari & 3 drops sesame oil and cook like an omelette over medium heat, slide on to your cutting board and slice into thin strips.

Satay Sauce:

  • 3 Tbsp Peanut Butter
  • 1 Tbsp Tamari
  • 1 Tbsp Fish Sauce (if vegan use 1 Tbsp Apple Cider Vinegar instead)
  •  juice of ½ Lime
  • 1 Tbsp Sesame Oil
  • 1 Tbsp Maple Syrup
  • 1 clove Garlic, crushed
  • 1 inch Ginger, thickly sliced
  • For an extra kick: 1 tsp Thai Red Curry Paste or Sriracha Sauce


Start by preparing the dressing to allow the flavours to develop. Combine all ingredients in a jar and shake vigorously. Because of the consistency of the peanut butter and curry paste a little hand whisking may be necessary to make a smooth dressing. Keep the ginger and garlic in large pieces, so they can easily be retrieved after they have infused their flavour. In the event that you love the bite of raw garlic and ginger chop it up finely and bring on the heat!

Use a mandoline with a grater attachment to grate the zucchini into “noodles”. If you don’t have a mandoline you can simply chop the zucchini lengthwise into thin slices and then cut those slices again into thin strips that resemble noodles.

Place the “noodles” in a medium sized bowl and begin to layer the remaining ingredients on top; bean sprouts, sliced pepper, grated or mandolined carrots, tofu (or egg), basil, cilantro, spring onion and peanuts. Drizzle with satay sauce, serve with a lime wedge and enjoy!

Serves 2.


Cruciferous Calcannon

By Elizabeth Whalley, RHN

Enough can never really be said about the vegetables in the Brassicaceae or Cruciferae family. They are often touted as being nutrition powerhouses that work to fight cancer. The phytonutrient responsible for this nutritional clout is called indol-3 carbinol – a special chemical found in cruciferous vegetables that help the liver in detoxifying carcinogens (cancer causing compounds) found in our diets and environment. They have also been established to reduce the growth of breast cancer cells and to prevent the spread of various types of cancers . Eating a serving of these magnificent vegetables has been proven to not only reduce your risk of cancer but their high vitamin and mineral content, like vitamin K and C as well as folate has been associated with a reduction in macular degeneration.- making them quite capable at keeping your eyes healthy and keeping you looking young and radiant!

This recipe is my take on a traditional Irish side dish, calcannon, that is sure to satisfy your cruciferous cravings! Try it hot, cold, as a main or as a side dish. The featured flavours are so versatile they will  perfectly compliment any protein.

Cruciferous Calcannon 



  • 6 yellow fleshed potatoes, scrubbed and chopped into small pieces
  • 1 small onion, diced
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1/4 green cabbage, chopped
  • 3 leaves kale, minced
  • 3 Tbsp butter
  • salt and pepper to taste


Boil the chopped potatoes in salted water until fork tender, strain and set aside.

In the same pot, melt 1 Tbsp butter over medium high heat. Add garlic, onion and cabbage and saute until translucent.

Remove from heat and add reaming butter, kale and cooked potatoes. Season with salt and pepper to taste and mash until potatoes are smooth.


Reference whfoods.com


Forget-Me-Not Frittata


By Elizabeth Whalley, RHN

This is a great recipe for the end of the week when your vegetable drawer is full of those last few veggies that are past their prime. In my frittatta, I used lots of winter market staples like potatoes and carrots, however this recipe is so versatile that almost any veggie combo could work. This recipe’s flexibility goes beyond its ingredients; transform those veggies headed for the bin into a quick weeknight dinner, weekend breakfast or even serve it cold for lunch. Fritattas work well served with a salad or even on toast.

My heart breaks every time I see an egg white omelette on a brunch menu, somehow egg yolks have gotten a bad rap! Perhaps in the wake of the low fat diet craze or in an effort to avoid high cholesterol foods. I want to shed some light on these misconceptions. The simple facts are that our bodies needs some good quality fat, like that which is found in egg yolks, to function properly and eating high cholesterol foods do not increase our bodies’ cholesterol. Egg yolks are a great source of vitamins A, E and K as well as omega-3 fats and a whole host of other nutritious minerals. Most of the an eggs selenium, a powerful antioxidant hard to find in today’s food supply, is found in the yolk.  The better part of the nutrition in a egg is in fact packed inside the yolk. So make whole eggs part of your regular routine and reap all the benefits!

Forget-Me-Not Frittata


  • 6 eggs
  • 1 small potato
  • 1 small onion
  • 1 large carrot
  • 1 small bunch greens*
  • 2 Tbsp butter
  • salt and pepper to taste

*I used Swiss chard in my frittata but any green would work depending on what you can find at the market or at the back of your fridge. Kale, collard greens, spinach, beet greens, ect.


Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Mandoline your potato into thin slices. Grease the bottom of a pie dish with 1 Tbsp butter and layer the potatoes along the bottom and sides of the dish. Pop the pie dish lined with potato into the oven while you prepare the vegetables.

Heat a pan over medium heat with the remaining butter. Dice the onion and carrot and sweat in the preheated pan. While your onion and carrot are sauteing chop your greens and beat your eggs in a small bowl. Add the greens in with the onions and carrots once they have become translucent and saute for a few minutes more. Season as desired.

Remove the pie dish from the oven and spread the cooked  vegetables evenly over the potatoes. Pour the beaten eggs over the top and spread them evenly with a rubber spatula if needed. Reduce of the oven to 325 degrees and bake the frittata for 25 minutes or until the egg is the centre has hardened.

Once baked flip over onto a cutting board and serve.

Serves 4-6

Roasted Beet Borscht


By Elizabeth Whalley, RHN

Spread the love this February with this heart-y healthy soup, chock-full of winter market staples! Beets are not only high in fibre (essential for moving cholesterol out of your colon), but they are also a great source of potassium (a key mineral in maintaining a healthy blood pressure). This powerful heart-saver is paired with the incredible cholesterol fighting super powers of the humble cabbage.

My borscht has even more hearty flavour for your heart to enjoy with a few simple twists on tradition;

  • Forget the pesky peeler and leave the skins on for even more fibre
  • Add a dash of cayenne or red pepper flakes for a kick AND a great boost in circulation.
  • Swap your regular refined salt for a pink (Himalayan rock) or grey (unrefined sea) salt and reap the benefits from less sodium

Roasted Beet Borscht


  • 3 large red beets
  • 1 large onion, diced
  • 1 large carrot, diced
  • 1 small head cabbage (I used a neat heirloom variety I found at the market; January King)
  • 1 1/2 – 2 litres of vegetable stock (or if your feeling particularly resourceful make your own veggie or chicken stock, the flavour is always unbeatable!)
  • 2 Tbsp apple cider vinegar (a beautiful little gem you can pick up at the market!)
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 2 Tbsp fresh dill (1 Tbsp dried will work just fine this time of year)
  • Olive oil
  • Pepper and quality salt to taste
  • Cayenne powder or red pepper flakes to taste
  • Quality sour cream and extra dill for garnish


IMG_1432 (2)Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Scrub the beets well and chop into 1 inch cubes. Place the chopped beets on a baking tray and drizzle with 1 Tbsp extra virgin olive oil and sprinkle with salt and pepper. Pop them into the oven for about 20 minutes. No need to fuss over their tenderness, the beets can finish cooking in your soup pot.

While the beets are roasting, heat 1 Tbsp of olive oil on medium heat in a large saucepan. Add the diced carrots and onions and sweat until the onions become translucent. Then add your chopped head of cabbage, dill and bay and continue sweating for approximately 5 minutes. Add the stock, vinegar and roasted beets to the pot, turn the heat to medium low and simmer for 30 minutes.

Once the soup has simmered, blend with an immersion blender until the beets look as though they were grated.

Serve with a sprinkle of dill and a dollop of sour cream. This soup is great either hot or cold, especially as the veggies are in season almost all year round.