World Inspired Meals with Local Ingredients

The following blog and recipes appeared on Life’s Simple Ingredient as part of a collaboration with Revive Wellness. 

 Has anyone else gotten the travel but these days? During the pandemic, there definitely was a decline in travel and everyone kept closer to home for obvious reasons, but now that restrictions are being lifted, the excitement for travel is returning. Travelling is a fantastic way to explore, discover and learn about new places and cultures and even push our taste buds and palettes when trying new foods. 

Although food is often viewed as a source of “fuel” or for “nutrition” and “health,” food is much more than that. Food brings people together during the good times, the bad times or times of comfort. Food is used as a connection that can bring communities and groups of people together. There are many traditions surrounding food that are passed down over multiple generations and are unique to a culture, country, or province.   

Maybe we are not able to fully travel around the world to experience other cultures, but we can think about how we can incorporate a variety of new food experiences influenced by different cultures right here in Canada. And to take that even further, our food diversity found on local levels will differ from province to province and coast to coast. 

We can expand our food experiences by embracing new ingredients, spices and cooking techniques in everyday dishes. Here are some great tips!  

  1. Look at your own cultural heritage and reach out to family or friends who could show you how to continue passing on traditional foods and cooking techniques. 
  2. Start with finding one new spice or ingredient that is influenced by another culture or your region. Then find a recipe from a cookbook, internet or the library to learn how to use it. 
  3. Learn more about the region you live in and what is considered a local ingredient:

    a. Wheat is the largest crop grown in western Canada

    b. Canada is one of the largest producers in the world of pulses

    c. Wild rice is grown in Saskatchewan 

    d. Fruit and mushrooms are found in British Columbia 

    e. Atlantic provinces have rich aquaculture (mussels, salmon, trout, oysters)  

  4. Find ways to learn more about cooking styles by searching out cooking classes or demonstrations put on by different cultures and communities. 

We have put together two recipes with flavours influenced by some of the spices commonly used in Mexican and Indian cuisine: Lentil Tacos and Apple and Curry Turkey Wrap

Happy cooking! 


About Andrea Shackel, Registered Dietitian

Growing up in an agricultural family in rural Manitoba, Andrea had always had an interest in food and an appreciation of where it comes from. After being a Registered Dietitian for over 10 years, becoming a Certified Diabetes Educator (CDE), and being a Strategic Centre for Obesity Professional Education (SCOPE) Certified Dietitian, Andrea’s interest in nutrition and food has continued to evolve and grow. 

Andrea has come to realize that being a Registered Dietitian is looking at not just what we eat but the bigger picture. Food is delicious, food can be therapeutic, food is complicated and messy, food is a part of our culture and passed down from each generation, food is enjoyment and social and part of an emotional roller coaster. Learning how to recognize our relationship with food and how complex it can be allows us to understand our ability to unlock our potential to move forward with our health goals. 

Andrea is honoured to be a part of an amazing team at Revive Wellness and to be able to offer unique opportunities and services to all clients.