GFM Network News


When summer heats up what better way to cool down than eating ice cream

When summer heats up what better way to cool down than eating ice cream

First We Eat: Why not make your own? It’s really not that difficult and the varieties are endless

I love ice cream. I am not alone. In my immediate family, Dave and Mom perk up like hungry pups whenever we stop at our favourite ice-cream joint. A 2019 survey reveals that 25 per cent of Canadians eat ice cream two or three times a month, making us solid contributors to its global consumption, […] Read more

My husband Dave has lost count of the number of ways we eat chicken, but his favourite is still fried chicken, which I make once or twice a year.

A chicken in every pot

First We Eat: Every summer I pick up our year’s supply of butchered chickens from our local farmer

I buy my chickens from a local farmer. She sells me eggs too — blue, brown and white ovals so beautiful they can’t help but taste better than commercial eggs. Each winter, my farmer sends me a note when she is ready to order her chicks, and I guess how many birds I think we […] Read more


I for one am thoroughly sick of screens, and those viewing snacks have caught up with me. The recipe below for these whole wheat crackers may be just the thing you’re looking for.

Pass the crackers please

First We Eat: Many of us may be snacking too much as we watch too much TV. Try this healthier choice instead

Don’t you wish you could have your buddies over? Miss those chances to get together and just hang out? Me too. I miss parties. I miss hanging out. I miss visits. I miss shared meals. Who knows when we’ll be able to celebrate like that again as we move into our second year of COVID lockdown.  […] Read more

Mocha Chocolate Pudding.

Try making this timeless, classic dessert

First We Eat: What could be better than a creamy, homemade chocolate pudding?

After Dad died last year, Mom started giving things away. It was as if his absence triggered her awareness of her own mortality and her dwindling need for stuff. She gave pots and pans to my eldest son, vases to my cousin, Dad’s unopened bottles of Scotch to her cousin, tools to my brothers, wineglasses […] Read more


Making corned beef is a weeklong process with the bulk of time spent brining.

Kindness and corned beef

First We Eat: When neighbours shared a butchered steer I wanted to share back as thanks for their generosity

My neighbour Sharon gave me half a beef brisket last week. She and her husband had taken a steer to the small local abattoir for slaughter, and were generous in sharing after the animal had been butchered. I decided that whatever I made, they’d receive some back for their kindness. Brisket, as you know, is […] Read more

I can’t resist eating pasta whenever I immerse myself in “The Godfather,” and carbonara is one of my favourites.

Food and ‘family’

First We Eat: Just like in one of my favourite movies — food plays an important role

Like most of us, Dave and I have been binge watching movies. High among my all-time favourites is “The Godfather” I, II and III. I particularly admire the attention that director Francis Ford Coppola pays to food, making it integral to many pivotal “family” scenes. We enter the tragedy at Connie Corleone’s wedding, rich with […] Read more


On days like that, the big kitchen is not warm unless I keep the fire bustling in the wood stove and have pots on all four burners of the gas stove, located at opposing ends of the kitchen.

Hot soup for a cold day

First We Eat: Try variations of this basic recipe to help get through the frigid weather

Before the polar vortex returned and the morning thermometer read -40 C, I spent some time splitting birch for the wood stove in the kitchen. We live in a house that’s over 100 years old, and my mom thinks that it was originally assembled from two grain bins bolted together; three steps lead down from […] Read more

In my grandmother’s kitchen she is remembered

In my grandmother’s kitchen she is remembered

First We Eat: Memories are kept alive as we live on in the rural home of my grandparents

Dave and I live in my grandparents’ house in rural Saskatchewan. Back in the day it was a three-room farmhouse, the long narrow kitchen its beating heart, the other two rooms chilly and dark — heated only by the wood stove and illuminated by kerosene lanterns. Electricity came in the 1950s, when the local farmers […] Read more


Some of my bottles hold self-infused vinegars — my own fruits, berries and herbs stuffed into jars of cider or wine vinegars.

Back to basics: vinegar

First We Eat: Vinegar has come a long way from being a staple used to make pickles

I was thrilled to recently read about Alchemist Vinegar, artisanal vinegars made by Paul Poutanen, owner of Tippa, a distiller in Okotoks, Alberta. I promptly ordered a sampler and am awaiting its arrival. I love vinegar, and six open bottles occupy prime real estate on the butcher block beside my stove. They offer testament to […] Read more

Salad rolls with dip.

How can you get your kids to care about food?

First We Eat: Try these tips to get them thinking and talking about what they eat

When my millennial kids were young, on the last Friday of each month I showed up at school early, having first made a trip to the recycling centre to return our household’s contributions. “Noon dismal,” my kids called it, that early discharge. We made it into a family ritual by going out for Vietnamese pho, […] Read more