“And now, back to your regularly scheduled programming.”
March is Nutrition Month here on the blog (even though we’ve been talking about other things lately), and we wanted to end the month on a high note. So we decided to pay a visit to Yvonne, one of our favourite Today’s Family cooks. Yvonne has been with us for the past four years at our CH Norton location in Burlington, but she recently moved over to our brand-new Tiffany Hills location.
TODAY’S FAMILY: I guess we should start by asking, what’s on the menu today?
YVONNE: Today is vegetable soup, made from scratch, with cheese sandwiches, and I sliced up some strawberries and other fruit for them too.
TODAY’S FAMILY: What are some highlights of the job here?
YVONNE: Getting to interact with the children is great. I love experimenting with recipes and menus and seeing how they enjoy it when I bring it in. I also enjoy seeing, when a parent comes in and tells me that their child has mentioned my cooking. Or that they’re playing in the kitchen because Ms. Yvonne is. Those kinds of things make the job really rewarding.
TODAY’S FAMILY: We like to put a lot of emphasis on healthy eating here.
YVONNE: Yes, we do.
TODAY’S FAMILY: And some children don’t really like their vegetables.
YVONNE: Well, they don’t think they do.
TODAY’S FAMILY: What do you do to make sure the children eat healthy?
YVONNE: We make sure every child gets all their food groups. If we make a brownie, they don’t necessarily know that there’s cans of black beans in there – it’s a healthy brownie. Sauces are good too – you can hide your beans or other vegetables in your sauces so they’re always eating them. And you find out what they like too. You change little things here and there until they eat everything. You have to experiment a little bit.
TODAY’S FAMILY: What about the food itself? Obviously that’s important too.
YVONNE: We use all fresh fruits and vegetables. I buy them straight from a local farm. And that gives me a little flexibility. If it’s a vegetable soup today, it can be a potato soup next time, or a broccoli and cheese soup. And we make everything from scratch.
TODAY’S FAMILY: Sounds like home cooking.
YVONNE: That’s what I do. I do home cooking when I’m cooking for the children. And I find that they really like that.
TODAY’S FAMILY: One of the things we want to talk about is the Canadian Food Guide. What’s a good way to describe it?
YVONNE: It’s basically a recommendation of how much you should eat of each food group. This many servings of dairy, this many servings of meat, stuff like that. We use it to plan our menus – when we have our kitchen meetings and talk about what we’re going to make, we make sure to use the Guide to make sure we’re making healthy foods.
TODAY’S FAMILY: Can we talk about this vegetable soup? It smells delicious. Can you tell us what’s in here, or is it a secret?
YVONNE: I put some egg noodles in there, because the kids like the soup to be thick, so it’s not so watery. It’s got some barley in there, some gnocchi, all the vegetables, fresh broccoli, green beans, some carrots, and corn. And I season it, with all my seasonings. Let it simmer, and let it cool down a bit before serving.
We managed to steal a bowl (or two) before getting out of Yvonne’s way, and wow. It was good soup. A big Thank You to Yvonne for taking time right before lunch to sit down and talk with us. And a big Thank You to you, for reading! Tune in next week for a new blog post (and a new theme for the month of April!). If you can’t wait until then, check out our Facebook, or our Twitter (@TodaysFamilyOnt). We’d love to hear from you!
Until next time!
– Today’s Family