Three Ways to Practice Self-love Through Our Eating Habits
Ah, February, the month of love. A time to focus on matters of the heart and emphasize the importance of love in our lives… And what love could be more important than self-love? More and more we are seeing the value of self-love and how it has far reaching effects into almost every realm of our lives. When we hold ourselves in high esteem we are more likely to maintain happy and healthy relationships, discover and pursue our passions, cultivate empathy, compassion and gratitude and make healthier decisions. The simplest and most far-reaching way we can exercise mindful self-care is through our food choices and the decisions we making in regards to how we choose to nourish ourselves? Here are three simple ways to show yourself some love through dietary practices:
Practice Eating Mindfully
Don’t worry! When we refer to the concept of eating mindfully we’re not talking about meditating over your food or having to create some elaborate ceremony before you eat. Eating mindfully simply means to practice making conscious decisions about what you choose to put in your body and to be present while you eat it. Sounds simple, and it is, but in a society where we are habitually eating on the go and fueling our bodies with convenience foods mindful eating can require dedicated practice. Eating mindfully requires one to eat without distractions; like watching tv, working or driving that engage with our senses, mindful of scents, textures, sound and taste, being more aware of how foods make us feel, and to cultivate a sense of gratitude for the food we put in our bodies. These simple habits of mindful eating are proven to optimize digestion, minimize bloating and assist in healthy weight loss.
Practice Listening To Your Body
The term ‘healthy eating’ has become a bit of a blanket statement in recent years with the implication that one is to survive off of salad alone in order to be healthy. The problem with this is that our bodies are living, ever changing and ever evolving organisms with constantly changing needs. Learning to listen to our bodies starts with mindful eating so that we can create time and space for our bodies to communicate with us, but also entails letting go of overly rigid dietary practices. In Eastern traditions, it is customary to change your diet with the seasons, consuming cooling foods in the summer and warming foods in the winter. It is important to acknowledge that a diet, whether vegetarian, paleolithic, ketogenic, or any other that may have worked well for us in the past, may not be what we need in this moment. Learning to listen to the cues our body gives us is the ultimate show of self-love and self-trust. Who can possibly know what’s best for us other than ourselves?
Make Ethical Food Choices
What does eating in an ethical way have to do with self-love? First, let’s take a look at what eating ‘ethically’ means. The concept of eating ethically and what it involves will vary depending on one’s own moral and ethical viewpoints. For the sake of this discussion we’ll define it as: sourcing foods that are raised humanely (if omnivore), supporting local farms and eating locally when possible, supporting sustainable farming practices and practicing gratitude for our food. When we acknowledge our indisputable interconnectedness it’s easy to see how ethical food choices reflect self-love. When we make more ethical food choices not only do we benefit our local economy, we’re also lessening our carbon footprint. Foods that are grown locally are harvested at their peak and are therefore significantly more nutritious than foods that are artificially and chemically ripened on their way to your grocery store. Ethical food choices benefit our planet, our communities and our bodies. What a beautiful way to spread love.
Contributor: Shannon Gilchrist, RHN
Our feature cocktail, The Sun Salutation is available all month at Pure Kitchen locations in Westboro, Elgin, and Kanata. This cocktail is the perfect way to treat yourself. It is sweet while at the same time offering a well-balanced flavour profile perfect for any occasion. The Sun Salutation features Pure Kitchen’s organic cold-pressed orange and grapefruit juice, which are now available pre-bottled at all of our locations. The backbone of this delicious cocktail combines Bols Apricot Brandy, locally produced Top Shelf Vodka, and Tawse ‘Spark’ sparkling Riesling.
The cocktail’s colour and garnish harken to the flow of a yoga practice and the camaraderie of a Sunday brunch enjoyed with friends, The candied orange garnish is dried over a 24-hour period, providing both a stunning sun-esque visual and sweet accompaniment to the cocktail. Pick up a sixteen-ounce bottle of Pure Kitchen’s orange and grapefruit juice to give the recipe a try at home. Or better yet, join us this month to enjoy the Sun Salutation in its full radiance.
* Pour into cocktail shaker *
• 1 ounce Bols Apricot Brandy
• ½ ounce Top Shelf Vodka
• 1 ½ ounce Cold-pressed Orange Juice
• 1 ½ ounce Cold-pressed Grapefruit Juice
– Add light scoop of ice
– Light Shake
– Strain into flute
Pour into flute: 4 ounces/Top with Tawse ‘Spark’ Sparkling Riesling
Garnish with: Wheel cut candied orange
Comfort food - it’s different for everyone, but we all have our go to dishes we crave! Executive Chef Olivia Cruickshank has created this vegan and gluten free twist on Mac & Cheeze - perfect for cozy winter nights.
Mac + Cheez
Allergens: (garlic, onion, canola, sunflower, coconut, soy, vinegar - cheez sauce), (sweetener, sesame - breadcrumbs)
• 3 packs of Gogo Quinoa GF fusilli (227g)
• 1 batch of cheeze sauce
• 6 Tbsp GF bread crumbs
• 6 Tbsp coconut bacon (or your favourite vegan bacon)
• Parsley, finely chopped for garnish
1. Once the cheez sauce is made, add the cooked pasta and stir well to combine.
2. Divide evenly between 4 bowls.
3. Top with bread crumbs, coconut bacon, and parsley.
• 3 x Gogo Quinoa GF fusilli (227g)
Bring salted water to a boil.
Add GF pasta and cook about 5-7 minutes, until al dente.
Drain and rinse.
• 2 Gf buns of your choice (we use O’Doughs burger buns)
• 2 Tbsp vegan parmesan
• 2 Tbsp olive oil
• 2 Tbsp dried oregano
• 2 Tbsp dried parsley
• 1 Tbsp dried thyme
• ½ tsp salt
Break up buns and blitz in your food processor until they turn to crumbs.
Place in bowl and toss with remaining ingredients.
Lay out on a baking sheet and toast in a 300 oven for 8-12 minutes, tossing the crumbs over half way through the cooking time.
Cool and store in an airtight container.
• ¼ cup olive oil
• 1 onion, minced in food processor
• 6 Tbsp garlic, minced
• ½ tsp salt
Heat oil in a pot.
Add onions, garlic and salt and cook until translucent.
Remove from pot and reserve for cheeze sauce.
• ¼ cup earth balance or other vegan margarine
• ¼ cup GF AP flour
• 5 ½ cups soy milk
• 4 cups (400g) daiya shredded mozza
• 2 Tbsp smooth dijon mustard
• 1 tsp salt
• 1 tbsp black pepper ground
• 2 Tbsp dried oregano
• 2 tbsp dried parsley
• 1 Tbsp dried thyme
Heat earth balance in a pot on medium- low heat until melted.
Add flour and whisk, cooking for a minute or two once combined.
Add dijon, milk and cheeze, heating through and stirring continuously.
Add remaining ingredients including onion mixture, combining thoroughly.
Contributor: Olivia Cruickshank
The staff of Pure Kitchen recently took a trip to two of our local suppliers, Culture Kombucha & Dominion City Brewing to learn more about what they do and discover what makes them such inspired industry leaders in their respective fields.
Our first stop brought us to Culture Kombucha - one of Pure Kitchen’s original suppliers since 2015 ! Owned and operated by Wentsi Yeung - Culture Kombucha is a small batch kombuchary that offers five certified organic kombucha flavours by the bottle, along with creative flavours by the keg - often using locally sourced ingredients to impart the freshest of flavours for inspiration. With Wentsi’s biology and a deep and genuine appreciation for the many health benefits of the ages old drink - what started as a passion project for herself and family has turned into a successful and growing business!
If you have never had the chance to try kombucha - this drink is said to have been around since 221 BC in China, so it’s had a chance to make a name for itself. The probiotic benefits of kombucha support gastronomic & gut health; the enzymes, nutrients and acids found within lend to support the bodies energy, immune system and more! Kombucha is a wonderful alternative to alcohol and sugar-loaded sodas, providing a refreshing carbonated beverage suitable for social situations while still providing a myriad of health benefits.
We had the opportunity to touch one of the largest scoby’s one can imagine(pictured here), to learn about the business evolution of Culture Kombucha and the best part? We brought along our cold-pressed & organic juice to make a collaborative Pure Kitchen & Culture Kombucha keg! We will be tapping this collaboration brew this week at our Elgin St. location - stay tuned on social to find out when you can enjoy an Electrify kombucha glass!
Our next stop brought us to Dominion City Brewing - an exceptional Ottawa brewery that has a tasting room with 12 taps, bottles or cans in the fridge ready to adventure home with you, along with snacks and an exceptionally knowledgeable & friendly team to help you out. While we were there, they were just wrapping up their first pop-up brunch with our pals over at Citizen serving four exceptionally tasty brunch items. It was a very delicious and extra convenient bonus for our tour.
Established in 2014, Dominion City has stayed consistent in their dedication to crafting artisanal beer that highlights the regional ingredients available while raising up the businesses in the community alongside them with fun partnerships, pop-ups and celebrations.
Reasons to head to their Canotek Road location? They only sell a handful of their beer at the LCBO or grocery store partners. To enjoy their brew gems (go for the gems), you’ll need to either go to their supporting restaurants or to their shop.
Visiting these local suppliers left us feeling inspired and proud to be a part of such an exceptional community of food & drink purveyors who share the same love for well sourced ingredients and local community as ourselves.. Find cans or bottles from these Ottawa owned drink masters on our menu at any location. Stay tuned for Spring adventures to other suppliers - where you’ll be able to join us!
Contributor: Tara Porter