Argentine Beef: Pride of the Asado

Argentina has more cattle than people. The “ocean of grass” through which cattle roam across the Pampas region, while endangered, is considered to be one of the richest grazing areas in the world. There is, on average, 10,000 square metres per cow. Naturally, the quality of an animal’s lifestyle and diet affects the quality of its meat. With freedom to exercise, they have less saturated and intramuscular fats, and because of their natural diet of grass, there is more vitamin E, beta-carotene and omega 3- and -6 fatty acids, which regulate fatty lipid absorption, decrease inflammatory processes, reduce cholesterol levels in the blood and improve overall blood circulation. Grass-fed beef also contains twice as much conjugated linoleic acid as grain-fed beef, which has anticancer properties and is proven to reduce cardiovascular disease. Continue reading “Argentine Beef: Pride of the Asado”

Food Not to Skip This Year

Perhaps, one of your goals this year was to eat healthily or to drop off some pounds. With a variety of foods to eat, making the right choice between what to eat and what not to eat can be stressful. What’s more, different methods of cooking food can keep you at a crossroad. You may love it grilled, fried or better smoked. Whatever your option, here are the best foods not to skip this year. Continue reading “Food Not to Skip This Year”

Afternoon Tea for Kids at the Omni King Edward Hotel

Afternoon Tea has evolved since it’s British inception. In the 1830’s and 40’s women were not welcome in coffee houses, so their social forum revolved around tea accompanied by a light meal of finger foods to stem the hunger between lunch and dinner. Ladies and their children would dress in appropriate attire, and proper etiquette was de rigueur. Victorian novels are replete with references to splendid tea times of great social consequences—the soap operas of the time. Continue reading “Afternoon Tea for Kids at the Omni King Edward Hotel”

Where To DINE Now: La Fenice

Close your eyes and you’ll think you’re in Italy.

In our fickle dining society, a downtown restaurant that is still a living, breathing entity after 35 years is almost as rare as world peace. So what’s the secret of the continued success and popularity of La Fenice? I call it the Core Values: exceptional classic Italian cuisine; professional service; and, with piano music playing in the background, an ambiance you won’t want to leave. Continue reading “Where To DINE Now: La Fenice”

The Story of Sushi: An Unlikely Saga of Raw Fish and Rice

Are you curious how avocados made their way into the sushi roll or how sushi came to exist in the first place? Inca uniquely told tale that blends facts in with a fictional style of writing, the story of sushi does just that.

Author Trevor Corson takes us through the experiences and life lessons of various students and teachers at the California Sushi Academy in Los Angeles. Bringing in elements of personal struggles and triumphs, you follow each character as they tell their story and learn about the fascinating and complex history of sushi from the floodplains of rural Asia to the Americanization of Sushi and its availability all over the world.

The Story of Sushi, Trevor Corson

Although sushi is often synonymous with rich and meaty fish from the ocean, the origins of sushi actually began inland. Historians are unsure of exactly when this happened but believed it corresponded with the adoption of rice farming along the Mekong river sometime around 300-400 BCE in what is now Southern China. During the rainy season, the rivers would flood and fish would become trapped in the rice fields. Long before the invention of refrigeration, sushi actually started out as fish that were jarred and fermented in cooked rice. Fast forward to the 1400s in Japan and people began eating this jarred fish when it was still raw on the inside and when the rice was still edible. The rice would become sour which connects to today’s sushi, which uses rice vinegar to add that sourness.

From that point, sushi evolved from a side dish to a main course and its growth in popularity inevitably hinged upon the policies and regulations of cities in Japan. Edo, the former name of modern day Tokyo, once burned to the ground in the 1600s. At the time a majority of the “fast food” available aka street food stalls, were producing hot soups such as ramen for the local workforce. In order to avoid starting another fire the city decided to change their laws in 1686 and only cold food was allowed for serving during busy dinner hours. This massive opening for new cold food businesses led to a drastic increase in availability of sushi for the masses. It is funny to think that something so widely available today could have taken much longer to take hold in the culinary world had a fire not occurred hundreds of years ago.

That was just a minor sample of the many bits of history that have influenced and built sushi into the respected and well-recognized dish that we all know and love. Whether you enjoy sushi as an exotic treat or as a regular part of your weekly meals, there is so much more to this dish than just fish and rice. When looking for places to enjoy sushi in your neck of the woods, download the Ocean Wise app and support Ocean Wise businesses that promote sustainably sourced sushi.

This article has been reprinted with permission from the Ocean Wise Aquablog.

Read more:

  • Growing Your Ocean Wise Life
  • What’s In A Name? Mislabeling Canada’s Seafood

On The Trail of the Perfect Peking Duck

There are many reasons to visit Beijing: to see what remains of ancient art, history and culture; to shop at the Silk Market and the Friendship store; and to witness the future on a collision course with the past. All of these inducements notwithstanding, for me, it really comes down to the pursuit of exquisite food. Great emphasis is placed on the cultural significance and symbolism of Chinese food. In fact during the Cultural Revolution, most of the Imperial Recipes were destroyed.

I learn that the Chinese word wei means taste, flavor and meaning itself. Sikong Tu, (837-908 AD) of the Tang Dynasty said to a poetic friend, “you cannot speak of poetry if you cannot tell taste.” He goes on, “If poetry, like food, is truly perfect, it is because it contains the tantalizing meaning beyond taste: wei wei zhi zhi. Could I find that elusive poetry today in Peking duck? Continue reading “On The Trail of the Perfect Peking Duck”

Is Fishless Fish The Future of Sustainable Seafood?

Fishless fish. Confused? You are not alone. Over the past several months, headlines have popped up announcing companies that are building an entirely new industry: lab-grown seafood.

The whole idea seems like something plucked from a science fiction novel, but is in fact becoming a reality making its way to marketplaces across North America. But what does it all mean? Are you eating seafood if the protein has not come from an actual fish? Continue reading “Is Fishless Fish The Future of Sustainable Seafood?”