Hands up if you feel like you’re trapped in a kitchen rut!
Making the same, or slight variations of basically the same foods.
I do this all the time.
My breakfasts are always either smoothies in a mason jar to-go, oatmeal bowls, or some version of a toast.
Lunches are typically salads, grain bowls or macro bowls.
And dinners are whatever we have left in the house, or takeout.
Finding inspiration to cook a variety of meals, especially for a family, can one hundred percent, be hard at times.
The cookbooks are there… Likely stacked on a shelf, somewhere in or around your kitchen, staring at you, mocking you! Reminding you of your failed new year’s resolutions to read more. 🙁
So where to draw good food and recipe inspiration from?
On a recent experience I had with President’s Choice, I enjoyed a sneak peek into their test kitchen, at their main Headquarters, in the Greater Toronto Area.
This is where the recipe testing, the tweaking, the improving, the go or no-go decisions, and the product launching all occurs.
Before I continue, let’s just say that I was ready to move in at first sight! Ultimate. Kitchen. Goals.
Lined with chefs, recipe developers, food connoisseurs and foodies alike, the PC Test Kitchen is where the magic happens.
I learned about the effort that goes into launching a new product. I learned how many products get launched on average per year, and what happens when a product launch may or may not go according to plan.
Above all, on this visit I was inspired by the sheer effort, of trying and failing, until you get something right.
That saying, “if you can’t take the heat, get out of the kitchen”. Can we just all agree to excavate that from our vocabularies?!
The PC test kitchen was the total opposite of this. And it reminded me of how nothing in the kitchen is perfect. We’re always tweaking ingredients, and improving recipes as we go along.
Nothing has to be perfect, and recipes can get messy sometimes. Messy is good! It’s part of the process!
My time in the President’s Choice test kitchen, inspired me to get creative with family friendly recipes using their PC Black Label line.
I like to think of Black Label as the line of products MADE for foodies. MADE for people who are adventurous in the kitchen, and not afraid of making a mess. Foodies who like trying new things, and who have an appreciation for a variety of elevated flavours.
Black Label is also a great line of products to draw inspiration from. Two of my fave products of all time are from President’s Choice Black Label.
The Peperoncini Piccanti & the Stuffed Green Olives!
With my test kitchen inspiration running wild, I decided on trying my hand at a recipe from scratch!
Warm Ras El-Hanout Quinoa Fresh Wraps
- 1 package of Asian fresh wraps
- PC Organics Quinoa
- 1 tbsp of vegan butter (Earth Balance)
- 1 tsp of Black Label, Ras El-Hanout spices
- 1 head of fresh leafy lettuce, finely chopped
- Your choice of:
For the quinoa, follow instructions on the package until fully cooked. Set aside until ready to garnish wraps.
Making the wraps is super simple. Just add boiling water to a wide, shallow dish or bowl, big enough to accommodate the diameter of the wraps.
Add your wraps into the water and let soak for 10 seconds. Next, pull them out and lay them flat on a plate to garnish with desired ingredients.
In a separate pan, bring 2 tbsp of extra virgin olive oil to a sizzle. Add your tsp of ras el-hanout so that the heat can pull out the flavours of the spices to infuse the oil. Now add your cooked quinoa to mix and lightly fry. Keep mixing quinoa on the stovetop until nice and crispy.
Depending on which PC Black Label items you choose, you can either add them to your ras el-hanout quinoa frying on the stove, or directly from the jar, into your wraps.
Line your fresh wraps with your finely chopped lettuce first. Next, add your fried, spiced quinoa, and lastly add your toppings of choice.
I made fresh wraps with the mushroom halves, the eggplant, the caper berries and the caponata. My heartmate and I like variety, so having the four to choose from was perfect.
These wraps are great for sharing, and great for getting the whole family involved with cooking.
Choose your own toppings, or swap ingredients out!
The best part of making these wraps is getting to make them by hand, knowing that nothing is perfect. Just like in the test kitchen, there’s always room to play in the home kitchen, too!
Nick Joly | Inspired by Nick