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Last month Chef Antonio Diaz took to the road with a cooking demonstration and luncheon at St. Matthew’s Community Church in Richmond Hill.  The topic was Healthy Cooking For One.

Antonio’s menu of salmon, rice, carrots and broccoli was purposely chosen to demonstrate how certain foods freeze well and can be portioned into individual meals which are easily heated in the microwave. Antonio recommends planning for a week of meals.  Grocery shopping can then be tailored to buy only what is needed and reduce waste and save money. Buy just one chicken breast, or 100g of deli ham.  Think of multiple ways to use ingredients. For example, if cooking a broccoli & chicken sauté one-night, unused broccoli can be put in a salad the next day.  Soup can be made with bits and bobs of extra vegetables.  Extra fruit can be frozen or used in smoothies.

Questions we asked Antonio:

What have people told you are barriers to Cooking for One?

Boredom, routine, not inspired to cook for themselves, feel lack of responsibility, especially when no longer cooking for a family, don’t see the need for healthy cooking.

Antonio’s Top Tips for Cooking for One:

Have fun! Cooking for yourself is wonderfully personalized. You can make whatever YOU like, whenever you like, no need to cater to another’s preference.  Spend some time on yourself, cook for yourself, care for yourself. You deserve it!

What inspired you to take your cooking on the road?

I am happy and proud to work for Verve. Food is the reason for our residents to move into our homes.   Our Richmond Hill residents are very satisfied with our dining services and we can inspire others as well. The chef is the face of the dining department and it is important for us to be out there connecting with residents – current and future.

Thank you, Antonio!

While you can certainly find Antonio in the kitchen at Richmond Hill Retirement Residence, you can enjoy his catering at various community events or stop in for one of Richmond Hill’s fabulous gala events, holiday buffets or guest nights.  You may even get to enjoy some of his fabulous cakes. In November 2018 Antonio won two gold medals at the Icing Inspiration Cake Decorating competition in Kitchener Ontario.  In October this year he plans to enter the Cake Competition at the Canadian Baking & Sweets Show in Toronto.

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