Yoda soda summer punch bowl

Punch bowl

May the fourth be with you!

Enjoy a replay of a recipe we posted a few years back for a summertime drink that’s as good for you as it tastes. Fresh lime juice gives this cooler its Yoda color, and sparkling water adds the bubbles. For a gourmet touch, add some lime sorbet.

Click here for the recipe.

Chocolate-and-pear tart for Marie-Laure

Saint Malo

Saint Malo

A blind orphan threads her way through the streets of Saint Malo at the end of the World War II, with a fresh-baked loaf under her arm. Her name is Marie-Laure and dry bread is all she will have to eat for several days… .

Hidden in the loaf are coordinates destined for the Allied Forces, pin-pointing where the Nazis are headquartered in the town, where their supplies are stored, where their ammunition is kept. Marie-Laure’s uncle radios this vital information across the airwaves on a powerful set hidden in their attic. More

Cherry clafouti solves one omnivore’s dilemma

Omnivore's dilemma - Pollan

What’s for dinner?

Once upon a time some friends formed a neighborhood reading salon. One night they slogged through the snow to sit by a fire together and discuss a book Michael Pollan wrote nearly 10 years ago — The Omnivore’s Dilemma.

Pollan’s story lifts the blinders to show where our food comes from, just as deftly as if he wrote it, well, yesterday.

More

Round Vinny Grette’s kitchen in pictures – best recipes of 2013

Here Vinny presents his best efforts for 2013 –
easy, healthy, and kid friendly food.
For a glimpse into Vinny’s kitchen, click on any picture.

For recipes, copy and paste the link that appears below each caption. More

Mood Foods

Christmas bread

Christmas bread smells like good times

Study Guide for Cook Up A Story

CHAPTER 6

This is the last in my series on study guides for the print version of Cook Up A Story. Chapter 6 is about how our moods affect our food choices. We’re wired that way. The part of the brain that stores memory and feelings detects smells, too.

Our last story, Melting Moments, shows how cheery memories are braided together with smells, sounds and tastes. That’s why when we’re blue, we crave foods that remind us of good times. When a small boy finds himself missing his grandmother at Christmas, he takes comfort in his family and its holiday traditions.

More

Don’t be shy… Milk’s got it!

Joe is quite the artist - More milk please

Study Guide to Cook Up A Story

CHAPTER 5

The many faces of milk is what Chapter 5 of the print version of Cook Up A Story is all about. The story, More Milk Please, offers a time-honored recipe for getting along with people—especially people of the opposite gender. Izzi’s best friend Jill and a jug of milk is all it takes to help her overcome her awkward shyness. More

Friendly fiber… When things go wrong, move on

Make magic with prunes

Make magic with prunes

Study Guide to Cook Up A Story

CHAPTER 4

Chapter 4 of the print version of Cook Up A Story  is all about fiber… a subject that can sometimes veer sadly toward the gross. The story, Prune Puff,  doesn’t disappoint. It’s all about how ridiculously wrong things can go in the kitchen. It starts when Clark tries to come up with a good science project. But you can do better than Clark. Follow Vinny’s simple recipe and concoct a delicious light luscious delectable cake… full of healthy fiber. Then, test your food science know-how. Take a quiz on fiber and do an experiment on the ingredient that puffs cakes up – baking powder.

The story underlines how important it is to label foods carefully. And not just in your own kitchen. All processed foods we buy have to be labeled. Vinny shows us how to understand the information on food labels.  Everybody can take a minute to refresh their know-how in this area – so important! More

Remembering old soldiers with Clementine’s oxtail stew

Dad in the kitchenLest we forget…

In honor of Remembrance Day, on what would have been my dad’s 94rd birthday, I’m re-posting a feature that touches on times during the Second World War. More

Meal time is family time

Holiday  turkey

Study Guide to Cook Up A Story

CHAPTER 3

Chapter 3 of the print version of Cook Up A Story  offers kids a family ghost to scare them silly. Little Miss Ellie and the princess’s pie makes for a tasty Halloween treat. Then bake two delicious dishes from Ellie’s past. Ellie’s mixed French and Native background helps us learn to appreciate foods from other cultures. Sit down for a cozy chat with your folks and unmask recipes that conjure up your own family’s skeletons. Vinny uses Ellie’s Native roots to discuss food labels we see at the store: natural, organic, local, large-scale producers… We soon see that no one size fits all. There’s a lot to learn and the choice is up to us. More

Vinny’s first give-away garners bouquets from Singapore

package

Happiness often slips in through a door you never knew you left open. That’s my calendar’s message this morning, and it’s proving true in many ways. Here’s one example. Vinny’s pleased to announce that his first attempt at a give-away is all tidied up. His prize, a copy of his book, goes global! More

Study Guide – Turning a New Page

A family's guide to healthy eating

Making nutrition fun through stories

I’m helping Vinny set up a new page in his main menu, called Study Guide.

The plan is to present a guide to healthy eating at home and school, for parents and teachers, based on Cook Up A Story.

Cook Up A Story started out as a way to introduce kids and their families to healthy eating ideas. I hoped to make nutrition fun through stories.

I began with a print book of six adventures for kids, where food is a part of the plot. The stories make bridges to nonfiction articles on the basics of nutrition the whole family can enjoy. The book also features recipes with healthy ingredients, so families can cook up the dishes that star in the tales. More

Wheat and the Glycemic Index… Loaded question!

Wheat

The glycemic load might be a better guide to healthy eating than the glycemic index

What should we believe? The Internet bombards us with so many facts, ideas, opinions and outright lies, it’s hard to make out the signal from the noise.

Dr. Davis in his book Wheat Belly makes a lot of noise about wheat. He calls it a blight and a poison and says no-one should eat it, not just the 6% of us who are gluten intolerant. But many of his statements are misleading. More

Wheat is not satan… but look out for those sneaky little sugar devils

This sinister gilded crust was the model for Salvador Dali's famous painting Bread 1926.

This sinister gilded crust was the model for Salvador Dali’s famous painting, “Bread 1926.”

Is bread the only villain in today’s battle with obesity?

How did this food, which people have enjoyed since the dawn of agriculture, get such a bad rap?

Doctor William Davis leads the attack. In his book Wheat Belly, he blames wheat and wheat alone for everything from heart disease to diabetes to arthritis and everything in between. His inflammatory accusations have some validity, of course. But overall, I think the good doctor is stirring the pot with too big a spoon. More

The 17-day diet, starring Dr. Mike Morano

17-day diet

A doctor’s plan for rapid weight loss
Sharon talks to Vinny about her adventures with the 17-day diet

Vinny: How fast can you lose weight on this diet plan?

Sharon: Ok. Right off the bat my radar goes up. Anybody knows you can’t expect to lose weight fast… and keep it off. But Mike says, yes you can! He promises results that last. It’s right there on the front cover.

When I crack the book open, his first words to me are, “Just give me 17 days.”

Vinny: How is this plan any different from all the other pitches out there? More

Fave fotos à la 2012

A year in review, through Vinny’s favorite pictures. The pictures are a fun way to index some of  the posts you liked best. Should old acquaintance be forgot… click through and remember! More

Thumbs Up! Awards and Feedback

DSCN0402_edited

We’re delighted to have received a number of lovely awards and comments from you over the past year. It’s encouraging to know that people are reading some of the stories we’re putting together and starting conversations with us about them. Even better, More

A Few Crunchy Numbers to Munch On… What was hot in 2012?

DSCN1607

Low-sugar cookies

"Skinny" Brownies

“Skinny” Brownies

Mohawk Gardens Public School

Vinny goes back to school

Beet cake

Choco-beet cake

Tibetan pie with it's hat off, so you can see what's inside

Yak’s Sherpa pie

Let's make some chips!

Kale and coconut oil

 

 Click the pics to view the posts   The carrots are cooked! Thanks to the WordPress gurus, we now know our blog, Cook Up A Story, got 11,000 views in 2012. People from all around the world logged on to read Vinny’s 41 stories over the year and to check out the 242 pictures we uploaded. I know there are lots of blogs out there with far bigger readerships, but I’m thrilled with the faithful following we’ve grown over the past year. Thanks so much to our readers who make blogging such a lot of  fun! More

Help, I’m Drowning in Sugar!

Artwork by Salvador Dali, Dali Museum-Theatre, Figueres, Spain

Sculpture by Salvador Dali, Dali Museum-Theatre, Figueres, Spain. Photo by me!

If, like me, you’ve found yourself drowning in a tsunami of baked goodies this holiday season, perhaps you’ll want to make a New Year’s resolution.

Repeat with  me: In 2013,  I promise to choose fruit instead of baked sweets for treats, snacks, and dessert. More

You are my sunshine!

sunshine-award

Vinny and I just got an early Christmas present. Casey of  Case of the Munchies has given us a Sunshine Award! What could be warmer at this time of year than to be recognized for working with children? More

Count Down to Christmas, Sugar Free!

 

Here we are, boys and girls, December First! It’s that magical time of the year when we start celebrating all things family, beginning with that special couple 2000 years ago who  rejoiced together  in a stable over the birth of their new-born son.

One fun tradition of the season is the Advent Calendar. Kids everywhere will be More

Mini Chefs Dish up Maxi Nutrition

This spring Cook Up A Story caught the imagination of a public school teacher in Burlington, Ontario. John Highley, who teaches at Mohawk Gardens Public School, said, “If we can  get the word out to schools, this thing might take right off. I see teachers using Cook Up a Story as a resource in their classrooms for nutrition/health units from grades 1 to 6, as well as the grade 5 chemistry unit.” More

Bouquets!

Everyone deserves a little recognition now and then. So today, I’ll take a minute to shine a light on two wonderful bloggers. More

Inspiring blogger? Who, me?

Many thanks to fsszj of Household arts and science fame for awarding me the Inspiring Blog Award.

It’s an honor to be recognized by a person like fssz.  Her blog is the epitome of the art of home management. More

Cook up a treat from Redwall Abbey

Cooking up stories from Redwall Abbey

These traditional recipes were born during the scarce years of the Second World War… but many probably go back much farther than that, handed down by mothers and mother’s mothers in Britain ever since they began to grow potatoes and cabbages. More

One Lovely Blog Award

Thanks so much to Household Science and Arts for awarding me the One Lovely Blog Award.  Especially so, as the honor comes from such a wonderful and prolific blogger herself. More

Win a free copy of “Cook Up A Story!”

Win your own copy!

Yes, it’s true! All you have to do is publish a review for Vinny’s book Cook Up A Story, somewhere on the web. Include a link to Vinny’s book details.

Then on Vinny’s Feedback page,  let me know where you’ve posted your review. More

Six great food blogs: Liebster shares the luvin’!

Liebster award

Sharing mostly free resources for young families, Florence is proactive and enthusiastic in imparting her local knowledge.

Last week when I opened my email I got a wonderful birthday present…  Mother on Edge  had given the Liebster award to Cook Up A Story! More

“Eat more leaves,” says Pollan

Reviewing “In Defense of Food”

“Eat food. Not too much. Mostly plants.” Thank you, Michael Pollan, for this simple advice. You’ve researched the heck out of the Western diet to show us it’s this easy to eat for better health. We just need to stop eating packaged food… especially those with packages boasting health benefits. And although you want us to eat more plants, you don’t make us give up on meat completely. Thank goodness! More

Tell us what you think about Vinny’s book

How did you like the soup?

Vinny wants to create a place on his blog where you can post comments about his book. This is that space! More

The latke who couldn’t stop screaming – a Christmas story

Let’s make a latke!

I dare you to read The Latke Who Couldn’t Stop Screaming without immediately jumping up to make a Latke. More

Curioddities… how curious!

An exercise in thinking

Vinny’s got a few new snippets for you about keeping our bodies in tip-top shape, from Ripley’s Curioddities. More

Gonna try with a little help from my friends

Vinny and friends

Cook Up A Story  is ready! This morning the first copy came out of the oven and is sitting on my kitchen counter. Once it’s cool, we’ll let you sample it. Hope you’ll like the flavor! More

Yoda soda

Copyright Tim Ketzer

What a lovely limey shade!—Yoda image from Tim Ketzer, as used in “Star Wars”

Soda might taste good but the science cannot be ignored.  It’s bad for your innards. Drink water, instead.

For those good times when you want something special, though, here’s a recipe you might like. It’s perfect for the hot weather (should it ever arrive…). Or mix up a big bowlful for Christmas… Yoda Soda is as lovely a shade of Yule-tide green as Yoda’s complexion!

More

Passover foods

http://www.eichlers.com/Product/Holiday_Store/Pesach_-_Passover_Store/Haggadahs/English_Haggadahs/All_Haggadahs/The-Animated-Haggadah-For-Children-_JD0264.html

What do a roasted bone, a hard-boiled egg, and some horseradish root have in common? They all find themselves on top of a biscuit called  Matzah during the Jewish Passover. More

The number 1 secret for feeding a healthy family…Bacon!

http://media.photobucket.com/image/bacon/aweranon/IMG_7771.jpg?o=11

Lego bacon!

Here’s a great read that gives you the goods on any food question your family may have. Secrets of feeding a healthy family puts you right on track for smart eating.

Take bacon, for instance.  Yummy! But you feel a twinge of guilt. Isn’t it too fatty for a healthy heart? Aren’t there  chemicals in it that may be a cancer threat?

Author Ellyn Satter says relax… we can enjoy it! More

Awesome cookbook for beginning chefs of all ages

Tasty protein!

Check out DK Children’s Cookbook , Canadian Edition. This thoughtfully planned, brilliantly photographed, and clearly written guide to healthy eating makes a good investment for any household. Click on Read more for a full review.

Story time… Fast-food fight!

http://thefourvalentinesandmore.wordpress.com/2011/05/14/guangzhou/

Mary-Kate and Ashley’s favorite Chinese restaurant is being put out of business. Once people eat across the street at Quick Food, they can’t help going back there for more. But why? More

From the super to the just plain silly

Just finished thumbing through two recent books from the library. Both are on cooking for children. Thumbs up on one, and as for the other, I’m still shaking my head. More

Foods with lots of ewww factor

Yes… but what the heck IS it?

Have you ever imagined sitting in a far-away land and tasting some really weird stuff? Celebrity Chef Anthony Bourdain does more than imagine… he’s eats whatever is put in front of his nose. More

An advent calendar that’s more fun than chocolate

Braided bread at Christmas

Braided bread at Christmas

Only five more sleeps till Christmas! And today I clicked the button for the 20th of December and watched my pal Chudleigh (a friendly black Lab) make a new friend.

My advent calendar this year is a little English Internet village… which gets more and more lively the closer we get to Christmas. More

Santa deserves a tasty snack

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KLrFfQ8U1aw

Cookies usually make kids feel better. But maybe the cookies see things differently? Check out the video, brought to my attention by Nina. With Cook Up A Story, you can make some healthy cookies that scream to be eaten!    🙂

Thanks, You-Tube

%d bloggers like this: