Sloppy Vanessas From Scratch

Sloppy Joes are most certainly on my list of foods that make my tummy smile. Eating hot, saucy beef slopped down on a bun is the best. I also love the amazing fun in trying to scoop the sandwich up … Continue reading

Easy Chicken Shawarma Kebobs

My last post was almost a month ago! Life gets busy sometimes and finding moments to sit and reflect don’t come around often enough. I have been on a journey to better health, and it’s been wonderful!

I think we’ve all experienced that moment, day, week, (year?!) where you feel tired, heavy, bloated, just not right. I felt myself sort of falling into that funk and realized that I wanted things to change. I am by no means a doctor or nutritional expert, but I’ve put myself on the path to success by focusing on sleep, exercise, hydration and (OF COURSE) eating healthy, yet DELICIOUS, food.

Shawarma kebobs served with leafy greens and golden sweet potato rounds. Drizzled with tahini dressing.

The idea that “healthy” food doesn’t taste good is a complete myth. I am a food lover, seafood maniac, obsessed cook and comfort food junkie, and I am loving this. I’m focusing on a diet with less high-calorie, highly-processed ingredients, while cutting back on refined sugar, salt, dairy and most grains. (Following paleo diet rules, with a few exceptions.) ๐Ÿ™‚ It’s all about what foods work for you, so change up whichever ingredients and foods make you happy.

Click here to check out my latest healthy creations on Instagram. You might get some ideas for yummy meals at home.

I am so completely delighted by the amazing food and recipes I’m adding to my repertoire, I haven’t looked back. I am so excited to share these recipes on the blog, because they are SO DELICIOUS and SO EASY.

Chicken shawarma makes me drool. It’s one of my fave dishes. If you haven’t heard of it, shawarma is a meat dish with variations all over the Middle East, Europe and the UK (all over the world!). Layers of seasoned meat (chicken, lamb, turkey, beef) and fat are speared and cooked on a rotating spit. The juices drip down the stack and the meat is shaved off around the outside as it becomes cooked. It’s usually served as “fast food” in a pita as a sandwich, on rice, or with fries. (I’m drooling.)

Photo cred: Wikipedia

Making my own version of chicken shawarma at home is one of the best things I’ve done in a while (could possibly become the worst, because I can’t stop making it). I use chicken breast, shawarma spices, no salt and grill these on the stove on my grill pan (this recipe is paleo-friendly). (My recipe was inspired by a recipe from Paleo Cupboard.) You could do this on the barbecue and stick the chicken on skewers too, perfect for the summer!

Chicken shawarma kebobs, served with garlic zucchini hummus.

Chicken Shawarma Kebobs Continue reading

Homecooking Made Easy Peasy With Prepd: Toronto Launch & Giveaway!

Life, as we know it, is becoming increasinglyย busy. As a young professional myself, I know thatย timeย is something, it seems, we have less and less of. To make time for work, friends, family, studies and all the other little things, it seems the trend is to make sacrifices where it matters most!ย In what we eat!ย As fast food and “take-out” meals are becomingly more and more readily available to us, cooking wholesome meals at home is becoming a thing of the past. In a world of reality TV and “top chefs”, we’ve been fooled into thinking that cooking a delicious meal is something best left to the experts.

If you’re a Torontonian, as busy as a bee and guilty of slacking in the kitchen, I’ve found you a solution for making delicious, healthy meals at home without costing you your valuable time. Continue reading

Make Jujube Tea, Not War.

The health benefits of dates have been well-known in China for thousands of years, They are believed to cleanse and enrich the blood, enhance immunity, promote white cell formation, reduce cholesterol and protect the liver, among many other supposedย gains. Dates are rich in vitamin C, calcium and iron and are believed to be therapeutic for the elderly as well as growing children and those with anemia. Red dates (hong zao in Chinese) areย also known as jujubes. For more on China’s “cure-all” fruit, click here.


I’ve been drinking red date (orย jujube)ย tea since I was a child. It was something my mother would make for my sister and I to keep our little bodies strong. Growing up, I thought of this as some sort ofย magical mommy-creation. I had no idea how easy it was to make! Continue reading

The Best Kale Recipe: Fritters!


Kale is the new black. (At least I think it kind of still is…) I’ve never seen a leafy green so in-fashion! A few years ago, when I first heard rumours of this new “thing”, everyone was talking about it. “Kale is SO good!”, “Have you tried kale?”, “Superfood!”, “Nutrients!”, “Kale saves lives!”. It was all around me. Kale salad, kale smoothies, kale chips, sauteed kale…everyone in the world, it seemed, was being kale-ified.ย Of course I had to taste this veggie for myself!

Kale is a leafy green vegetable that belongs to the Brassica family, a group of veggies including cabbage and brussels sprouts. I always say it looks like huge, curly spinach. It’s a little bit tougher, and some say it has a bit more of a bitter flavour. It has been called a superfood and one of the healthiest foods in the world. It is packed with nutrients and has a ton of health benefits, while also low in calories. Here’s a top 10 list of kale health benefits.

Kale can be eaten raw or cooked. I absolutely love it (although I don’t think there’s a single vegetable that I don’t love). The problem I had with kale was that I didn’t know a lot of kale recipes. I never knew what else I could do with it, other than sauteeing it with garlic or making a salad. I mean, I love kale salad, but there’s got to be other ways to eat this stuff… And I found out thatย there definitely are! Here is one of my new kale favourites! Delicious kale fritters! Flavourful and full of kale (and spicy if you want). They’re so hard to resist! Continue reading

Burger Safety This Hamburger Season

As a microbiologist, I feel the need to share the importance of fully cooking ground beef. This sort of popped into my mind while I was writing about making ground beef tacos. It’s barbecue season: the season of the hamburger. This isn’t to scare you! It’s just to keep everyone aware of these safety tips on how to cook safe and stay healthy.

brickhand burger

You want to fully cook ground beef to avoid food poisoning. Food poisoning associated with ground beef is also known as Hamburger Disease. Beef can be contaminated with bacteria like E. coli. Ground beef, in particular, puts you at a higher risk for becoming ill. The most common ways of getting sick from ground beef

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