Cooking on a budget with Quest
Yesterday, we took Farm Kitchen on the road to visit one of our favourite partners, Quest Food Exchange in East Vancouver.
Hieke had the honour of hosting a cooking class with one of Quest’s volunteers, Rick Gibbs, with a focus on creating delicious healthy family meals on a budget.
Quest is a not-for-profit food exchange program which offers healthy, affordable food to those who face barriers to accessing these staples through traditional means.
All ingredients for the class were purchased in Quest’s grocery market before the team proceeded to the custom designed kitchen at the back of the store to cook up a storm.
Here’s what they created (thanks Rick for sharing your recipes):
Szechuan green beans
– 1 lb Green beans, washed and ends cut off
– 2 cloves garlic, finely chopped
– 2 green onions, finely chopped
– 1 small carrot, finely chopped
– 2 jalapeno peppers, deseeded and rinsed, finely chopped
– Pepper and Salt
– Olive oil for frying
– 2 table spoons Szechuan sauce (can substitute honey, maple syrup or brown sugar)
Fry garlic, onions, carrot and peppers for a few minutes on high, then add green beans. Cover and let simmer on low to med for 4 or 5 minutes. Take lid off, turn burner to high and add Szechuan sauce. Toss for a couple minutes, remove from heat then serve.
Swiss Chard, in ¾” strips, discard stems
1 cup Grapes, sliced into thin pieces
1 Apple, cut into matchsticks
1 Carrot, cut into matchsticks
2 celery stalks, thin cut diagonally
1 Orange, peeled and finely chopped
1 Orange Pepper, cut into slices
Pepper & Salt
½ cup cooked Quinoa (cooks the same as white rice)
All washed, chopped and mixed together. Add the quinoa at the end, drizzle with olive oil – no dressing needed on this salad!
Penne tossed with Sausage and Red Peppers, served with toasted garlic bread
– 5 bratwurst sausages, sliced into 1/8” pieces
– 1 jar red peppers, finely chopped
– 1 bag penne (enough for 6 to 8)
– 2 cloves garlic (or more if you love garlic), finely chopped
– 2 green onions, cut into ¼” pieces
– 2 stalks Celery, diagonally cut
– 2 carrots, cut into matchsticks
– Pepper and Salt
– Olive Oil
Fry the sausage, green onion, garlic, carrot, pepper and salt on high heat for a few minutes, until the sausage is just about cooked. Turn heat to medium, add the red peppers and put the lid on for a couple minutes. Turn off heat.
Separately, boil water for pasta and cook, drain and set aside until sauce is ready.
We used a nice big bowl, put the pasta in first and covered it with the sausage and red peppers.
Garlic Bread: we took day old buns, cut then into 3/8” slices, arranged them on a baking sheet. Then we blended about ½ cup of olive oil and 6 cloves of garlic (yikes!). We brushed the blended mix over the bread, sprinkled with some dried oregano, basil, pepper and salt and grilled it under the broiler for a couple of minutes.
Total bill at Quest’s market for all of the above (enough to feed 8 people with leftovers): $13.36!