Need a few last minute gift ideas? Here you go


Though you can’t give the gift of good health, you may provide a loved one or friend with an offering that could help them towards that goal.  Or why not get something for yourself   for enlightened eating in the new year.

•     Pulke Herb Infuser

I just love the look of this! The word pulke is the Yiddish word for chicken leg and while we really don’t speak Yiddush in my house, if you’re sitting at my table, it is definitely what you ask for if you want a chicken leg.

When making certain soups or stews, instead of tying your herbs or putting them in cheesecloth, go for the pulke. While consuming herbs offers a host of health benefits, there are dishes where you simply want the flavours, not the herbs themselves. With the pulke, I don’t have to strain my chicken soup – while everyone loves the carrots, they’re not a fan of the cooked dill and parsley.

The herb infuser is from an Israeli design team, Ototo. They’ve come up with some very ingenious looking products  – from a Flower Power steam venter to put on a pot to a Tea submarine for infusing tea or Bunny Pops for homemade frozen treats.  Check out their other products – even just for a look as they will bring a smile to your face!  

If you can’t find a retailer in your area, email

•    Hamilton Beach Breakfast Sandwich Maker


Have you heard that  the provinces of Ontario and Nova Scotia have banned eating breakfast sandwiches while driving? When I heard the news report about the ban, it did sound strange – singling out one food – but it did seem to make sense.   After all, you could end up wearing more on your clothing than what might make it to your mouth and in the process, become a distracted driver.

In fact, though, the scenario was somewhat like Orson Welles’ War of the World’s radio broadcast where everyone believed that the fictional program was very real.  CBC Radio had done a satirical segment on the ban but somehow the media ended up reporting it as news.

In any case, while you can indeed drive and eat, why not make your own at home where you can control the ingredients – use whole grains rather than refined varieties, include lower sodium and fat cheeses and pack in some veggies, if you like. Just put your ingredients into the sandwich maker and in five minutes, your perfectly assembled breakfast sandwich is ready to eat.

And why stop at breakfast? Get a breakfast sandwich maker cookbook and whip together salmon and rice sushi combos or caramelized onions and cheese sandwiches.

The pieces all go into the dishwasher for easy clean up.

•    Chef’sChoice® ProntoPro™ Diamond Hone® Model 4643  

Dull knives not only make food prep downright dangerous, they can turn preparing  healthy eats into drudgery.  How many times has it taken you significantly longer than you thought to slice up a tomato or cucumber  or chop an onion or a clove of garlic? What about dicing a butternut squash?  Blame your dull  knives.

Sharp knives can make quick work of chopping vegetables for a salad,  soup or stir-fry.  Skip the deli counter and prepare your own thinly sliced meat or poultry  -an easy task with the appropriate knife that’s ready to go.

While you can certainly use a knife sharpening rod, it’s not as easy as it looks. Here’s a simple option – a manual Chef’s Choice® Diamond Hone® knife sharpener?  Check out the different models for both straight edge or serrated knives.

•    Flex Appeal- A Vegetarian Cookbook for Families with Meat-Eaters by Nettie Cronish and Pat Crocker (Whitecap)

This is the second book on the vegetarian-meat-eating family theme by these two writers.  It’s a  perfect cookbook on how to feed a mixed family.    The recipes can be both vegetarian or  contain meat as they suggest  alternatives and when to add the meat options to the dish.  The more than 100 recipes are accompanied by fast food  and make ahead prep tips along with lots  of information about the ingredients contained.

•    150 Best Indian, Asian, Caribbean and More Diabetes Recipes by Sobia Khan,  MSc, RD (Robert Rose)
Indian, Asian, Caribbean and more DiabetesCookbook
While the recipes may be geared for those with diabetes,  if you are familiar with the nutritional guidelines for diabetes, then you know that they’re basically the same for anyone who is trying to make healthy food choices.

These traditional cuisines, though, can sometimes be laden with sodium and fat, making certain dishes less than ideal for anyone. Sobia Khan, a registered dietitian and  a professor of food and nutrition at the Centre for Hospitality and Culinary Arts at George Brown College in Toronto, has come to the rescue with her new book.

The recipes are organized according to region, making it easy to find the recipes you’re looking for. Those unfamiliar with certain ingredients will find the Multicultural Pantry List very helpful to understand the cuisines and stock up on the essentials. Each recipe  also has a complete nutritional analysis and handy tips.

Tags: , , , , ,

Categories: Book Review

Author:Rosie Schwartz

Rosie Schwartz is a Toronto-based consulting dietitian and writer.

Get Enlightened Eater in your inbox

Subscribe to get the latest nutrition news, fresh recipes and more!

No comments yet.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

%d bloggers like this: