This past Tuesday we had the pleasure of having Liza Baker as the leader of the Lunch N’ Learn . Liza is a certified Health Coach and chef that likes to place great emphasis on SOLE food: Seasonal, Organic, Local and Ethical and “from scratch” cooking.
- Seasonal: Try to eat food that is in season—and with hoop houses, that variety has increased, even in the winter in Michigan!
- Organic (and/or sustainably grown). Food should be raised in a way that is most beneficial (or at a minimum, the least harmful) to the environment.
- Local: you can get at least 80% of your food—vegetables, some fruit, milk, meat, poultry, and eggs—directly from local farms.
- Ethical: Try to purchase food that is grown/picked/transported in such a way that all the human beings who touch it along the food chain earn enough to feed themselves and their families and have other basic needs of stable work, shelter, clean air, and water taken care of.
Liza follows the belief of food being “healthful, “green”, fair and affordable for all”. She also takes the approach of simple, easy steps for at home cooking. Through fulfilling many roles in her life (one of the few being a busy parent), Liza identified a system to decrease the burden of from-scratch-at-home-cooking. Fl!P Your Kitchen is a system (and cookbook) that follows 4 basic steps:
- create a whole foods pantry
- learn some basic recipes and techniques
- plan your meals for the week
- ALWAYS cook for more than 1 meal
Liza applied these to the cooking demonstrations here at 320.
For example, during our lunch n’ learn, she created 4 meals using the main staple of rice and beans. Notice that these 2 ingredients are “whole” foods (no preservatives or other additives) that were cooked ahead of time and in bulk (several servings). Utilizing this method allowed Liza to quickly put together 4 meals: Southwest Rice & Beans Casserole, Black Bean Rollups, Tortilla Soup and Rice Fritters -all within an hour!
Liza’s goal is to “bring a deep mindfulness to cooking—not only by teaching people how to get back into the kitchen cooking from scratch on a regular basis but also by helping them see how our food can connect us to our own health, the health of the environment, and the health of our local community and economy”.
Liza’s recommendation for local sourcing (eating SOLE-fully):
*right click the links
You can always search for local sources by ZIP code at LocalHarvest.org
If you are interested in getting her cookbook right-click HERE!
For a copy of the recipes cooked during the Lunch N’ Learn right-click https://is.gd/FlipMcKinley
Plus, a bonus recipe for her Mexican Spice Blend:
(combine in these proportions and keep in a tightly covered container at room temperature):
- 1 T chili powder (or use 1/2 tsp pure ground chile + 2.5 tsp paprika)
- 1 tsp dried cumin
- 1 tsp dried coriander
- 1 tsp dried oregano
- (salt + pepper to taste—start with 1/2 tsp salt, 1/4 tsp pepper, or add to final seasoning of dish)
Please feel free to connect with myself or Meredith!