I love Famous Foods grocery on Kingsway in Vancouver, BC. I like that they have such a great variety of locally produced food. I like that the staff are always friendly and helpful – they are friendly with each other, too, which is a good sign. They always offer carry out when I purchase by the case.
And I love that I always find interesting, local, and healthy food there. Most recently it was a cashew and date snack bar. That’s all it had in it. Nothing else. Especially no added sugar. Yum.
I love that I can buy lots of whole foods in bulk. One of the many fringe benefits of eating local is a focus on eating more healthfully. The bulk products may not all be local, but food that is unprocessed is a healthy option to have and that works for me.
Hemp Seed Hearts
I’ve “discovered” a few local products at Famous Foods that have become regulars on my shopping list, including Golda’s Cilantro Pesto
and Spring Creek
natural beef (no hormones or antibiotics).
And I found a new supplier of hemp hearts, Canada Hemp Foods, based in Gibsons, BC and sourced from Manitoba. As a Prairie girl at heart, I’m happy to be supporting my country’s farmers. Frankly, that’s damn cool.
I made my “world famous pizza” again today — world famous because it’s on the Internet so theoretically anyone in the whole world could know about it. And famous because…well… my friends know and love it.
When I made it this past summer with my 17 year old niece, Falisha, she was skeptical, but after the fact she conceded that I had a point. (That’s as much credit as you’re going to get from a super cool teen on her way to graduating high school.) This despite that fact that she doesn’t like zucchini or sweet peppers. Kudos to her, she was “willing to try anything once” and ended up liking the veggies in their lightly cooked state. The fact that it was also actually healthy, slipped right by her.
My pizza is a favourite when I have guests coming for dinner. The whatever-I-have-in-the-fridge-and-garden recipe allows me to prep a variety of ingredients and let each guest make-your-own to suit individual tastes, including vegetarian.
Liz’s World Famous, No Guilt Pizza
So, here is my recipe for über delicious, world famous, healthy pizza. The beauty is, in summer even more of the ingredients can be local, straight from the garden:
- Lebanese flat bread — local producer Kandoo Bakery (looks like the restaurant gets rave reviews too)
- Pesto base — my favourite is Golda’s Cilantro Pesto but you can mix it up for variety
- Spicy Italian sausage, removed from casing, browned — local producer Freden Fine Foods, made fresh daily
- Zucchini, shredded, sliced, diced or however you like it
- Sweet peppers, any/every colour, diced small
- Tomatoes, cherry, grape or other — when I can get them fresh from the garden
- Fresh herbs — available from the balcony garden, I pick an assortment and mix/match
- Shredded Parmesan cheese, to taste — I don’t like a lot of dairy, but if I have it I want the good stuff
- Crumbled feta cheese, to taste — ditto above, a sprinkling is perfect to add a bit of zip
The instructions are pretty complicated, so pay attention here:
- Cut a slab of flat bread
- Slather on some base
- Layer on an assortment of ingredients, to taste
- Heat in the oven at 350 till the cheese melts, about 10-15 minutes
Here are some additional tips:
- All veggies can be optional; mix, match and add depending on what’s readily available. But just so you know, it won’t officially be Liz’s World Famous Pizza if you mess with the above.
- The flat bread comes in a big long flat and freezes extremely well. I cut it into sections before I freeze it, then pull out just what I need. It thaws lightening fast.
- Ground beef, chicken, or turkey work as well. Ditto the rule about messing with the recipe, noted above.
- I prefer pesto, but I guess a traditionalist could use tomato paste. Do I need to repeat the Messing with Recipe rule?
Mmmm, aren’t you hungry just thinking about it?! Oh, and if you don’t tell the kids it’s healthy they’ll love it.
I stumbled across Golda’s Fine Foods all natural Cilantro Pesto a few months ago at Famous Foods, an independently owned grocery store in Vancouver where I buy rice milk and a wide variety of other healthy, unique, and delicious groceries.
I’m a fiend for cilantro, but it’s one of those herbs that evokes a strong reaction from everyone — they either love it or hate it. Not sure what to expect, I took it home and used it as the base for one of my über delicious, healthy pizzas (Lebanese flat bread, paste/pesto, browned ground Italian sausage, shredded zucchini, diced sweet peppers, other finely chopped veggies, a dusting of parmesan, a dusting of feta, warmed in the oven till the cheese melts).
Delicious! Not only did I use it as the pizza base, I drizzled it all over the topping once the pizza came out of the oven. It is now a regular grocery list item and I simply cannot get enough!
Don’t kid yourself, this is not low fat, but it IS made from all natural ingredients and Golda’s is a local success story, based in Mill Bay, British Columbia. Find a store that carries it near you.
Oh, and if the ones you love hate cilantro, tell them it’s coriander pesto. You won’t be lying and they just might thank you.
Have you tried this product? Add your feedback, post a comment…