Tag Archive for East Vancouver

@Flourist Chocolate Chip Cookies

Things I think a lot about: sustainability, the environment, and how we can save the planet. 

Well that’s a bright and cheery intro, hey? 

Okay. But seriously. The main reason I gave up eating meat all those years ago is because of the environment. And while I totally get that not everyone is going to stop eating meat, if we all just ate less meat, it would make the world a better place. I loved this recent article in The Atlantic that advocates that we even just give up beef, and how much of a change that could make to our planet. 

Flourist Chocolate Chip Cookie baked in a large cast iron sklllet

Another option for those of you who are concerned about the environment, but aren’t ready to give up meat, is to only buy locally-farmed, pasture-raised meat. These animals are better cared for, and put less of a toll on the environment. 

In fact, there’s a lot of research out there that advocates for eating locally, and that doing so could actually be the best thing for the environment. There is a lower carbon footprint if you have to ship food a shorter distance. For me, also, I prefer to support our local businesses if possible, keeping more money in our local economy. 

But you know what else I think about?? Bread. And the best chocolate chip cookie recipe. And pizza dough. And Focaccia with rosemary and sea salt, dipped in good olive oil and balsamic. 

round loaves of sourdough bread

Yesssssss. 

And so it was, for all these various reasons, that I was super happy to see that Flourist finally was able to open up a bricks and mortar location here in Vancouver. 

I’ve been fans of them for a long time (since before they rebranded in their current iteration). They sell local (well, from as far away as the prairies) grains and pulses that are locally milled and high quality. We’re talking heritage grains and Canadian pulses that are a real staple of our economy. 

I used to buy their stuff in local specialty markets, but now they have their own location, so you can go straight to the source! 

Flourist’s location, just off of Commercial Drive in East Van, also houses a mill, a cafe, and space for cooking classes and demos. 

Shelves of dried goods

And–oh joy! They sell sourdough starter, too. 

The space itself is super adorbs, and the cafe itself sells, in addition to baked goods made with their flour, lighter meals like salads made with beans, chickpeas, and millet, as well as toasts made with their homemade bread. 

It honestly makes me so happy to witness and be a part of this whole food revolution. I love that people are beginning to understand that convenience food comes at a price, and we’re starting to look back to the eating habits of our ancestors. 

By the way, if you’re gluten free, you may be able to tolerate this kind of bread. The flour it’s made with is less processed and refined, and its genetic footprint is less refined. In addition, sourdough partially ferments the dough, making it easier to digest. 

a plate of cookies

When I was recently at the new Flourist location, checking it out, I tried one of their Chocolate Chip Cookies.  And then, a couple days later, not shockingly, they showed up on this list of where to get the best Chocolate Chip Cookies in Vancouver. 

At Flourist they bake the entire recipe in a big cast iron fry pan and cut it into wedges, so I’ve done that here. You can either bake your own or head over to Commercial Street to buy them. While you’re there, you’re going to want to pick up some bread, flour, and probably some chickpeas, too. 🙂 

Oh–one last thing. All of the packaging at Flourist is recyclable. Your “to go” coffee will come in a mason jar that you pay a deposit on and then either bring back or keep. Pulses are sold in jars as well. The owners, Janna and Shira, are passionate about the local food movement, and Shira is a long-time plant-based advocate and food blogger. So yeah, this is a small local business you can feel good about supporting. 

Wedges of chocolate chip cookies

Especially when the chocolate chip cookies are made with whole grain flour, and they taste this good. 

 

Kimchi Fried Rice from Well Fed, Flat Broke

I’m a localvore. I know, it sounds like some dumb, new-age, hipster thing, but really it just means that I like to support local business when I can. Usually, that means shopping at small, locally-owned stores and restaurants over larger, US-owned ones, or buying directly from producers at Farmer’s Markets.

So, there are few things that make me happier than when one of my fellow local food bloggers makes it big. Elizabeth Nyland over at Guilty Kitchen now has two cookbooks, and just this month, Emily Wight of Well Fed, Flat Broke just published hers: Well Fed, Flat Broke: Recipes for Modest Budgets & Messy Kitchens.

Now, Emily and I have some common philosophies. Vancouver is a notoriously expensive city to live in. It is normal for us to spend 50% of our incomes (and sometimes more) on housing, as compared to most places, where that stat is around 30%. In my single-income household, housing charges are our biggest expense. The second biggest chunk of money that goes out the door? Can you guess? Food. Because we like to eat good. Both at home, and when we go out.

Shopping at local produce markets (I love Donald’s), and shopping seasonally are both great ways to save money.

The thing I love the most about Well Fed, Flat Broke, is how well it reflects our multi-cultural city. I’ve lived in other places, and struggled to get authentic ingredients to make dishes from other cultures. Here in Vancouver, we don’t have that problem–pretty much anything you need is readily available, although it may merit a trip across town.

Emily’s recipes reflect the influence of all these different cultures: Asian, Italian, Mexian, Korean, Indian, all with the whimsical touch of a gal from East Van.

I’ve made about half a dozen of the recipes from this book so far, and loved them all, including a fantastic bread recipe the incorporated garlic scapes and cheese. Today, though, I’m sharing her recipe for Kimchi Fried Rice. I recently got turned on to the world of fermentation, and am now making my own kimchi. Emily uses it in many recipes in this book (Emily is also a little obsessed with your digestive health). I loved this as a quick and easy dinner or lunch–you could also omit the egg and the bacon (or use a veggie bacon) to make it vegan.

You can meet Emily at the Well Fed, Flat Broke book launch at Barbara Jo’s on April 19.

 

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