Village Vancouver

Vancouver's Leader in Transition toward Strong, Resilient, Complete Communities

McBride Park Field House Residency

The Village Vancouver residency at McBride Fieldhouse is generously supported by the Vancouver Park Board's Fieldhouse Activation Program which provides project space and access to parks to foster community-engaged activity that focuses on arts, culture, sports, environment, local food and social encounters.

Blog: June/July 2019

(July 10, 2019)

A long overdue post

Village Vancouver is proud to (finally) post something on this page!

In case you haven't heard, VV has moved to our new field house in McBride Park. You can expect regular(ish) blog entries on anything related to our activities, recipes we'd like to share, and anything we think might be interesting. So without further ado, here's our first post!

3rd Annual Westside Food Festival

From June 18 to August 5 we have many amazing free and low-cost food and gardening-related workshops/events! Head over to our main Eventbrite page for a full list of workshops and to register.

Main Street Car Free Day

We had an amazing Main Street Car Free Day on June 16! We handed out hundreds of free seeds from our Seed Library and handed out flyers with info on our 3rd Annual Westside Food Festival

Here's some photos of our booth and the Sustainable Village! There was some amazing live music, some booths from Groundswell, Open Science Network, the UBC Bike Kitchen, Elderdog, and the Mount Pleasant Neighbourhood House.

Making Beeswax Salves at the Field House

Lori Snyder came over to our Field House for our Making Beeswax Salves workshop. As someone who's always been interested in crafting, but has never actually gotten around to doing it, this was a very nice introduction into that world. Lori is incredibly knowledgeable in native plant species and the various medicinal and healing properties that they contain. Lori infused the oil she used with local plants and flowers.

What astounded me was how easy it was to go about making the salves for yourself. Some beeswax, plant infused oil and few containers was all it really took to craft something that is so great for the skin. I took home a little jar myself and am using it on my lips, which were terribly dry, and have found it not only soothes, but actually repairs them! 

Pictured on the upper left corner of the image below is The Boreal Herbal: Wild Food and Medicine Plants of the North, a book highly recommended by Lori as it's a great guide for those wanting to pick their own plants and flowers to make their own healing salves.

Lori later took us out around the Field House to look at any native plants that we could pick, dry out, and then use to infuse oils (such as sunflower, olive, or coconut oil) to then use for making our very own beeswax salves.

Children's Workshops at the Field House

Teaching your children how to garden is an excellent developmental tool! They can get their hands dirty while learning where food their food comes from, how to eat healthy and lets parents spend quality time with them. There's many great sources that you can find online that explain many other benefits of gardening for children, I've even found academic sources that provides a more in depth analysis (for those interested in that source click here).

Kids are also very eager to learn about gardening (as a former child myself, I can attest to this) so that's why we were more than excited to put on 2 free children's gardening workshops as part of the Westside Food Festival!

Hands in the Dirt!

Last week we had our very first children's workshop, where our instructor, Rhiannon Johnson, taught kids how to re-pot herbs and veggies so that they can grow better and stronger. Along the way, she took out plants from her very own garden to show and taste. Kale proved to be very popular among the little ones!

We had a variety of plant and herbs for parents and kids to take home, including kale (of course), basil, and chives. Next, we took everyone outside to start re-potting the herbs/veggies of their choice. 

A few of the older kids happily helped us set up a small vertical garden right outside our door. They'll be able to stop by and maintain it whenever they need to.

Grow Your Own Microgreens 

Microgreens are quick and easy to grow at home and a great way to teach your kids how to grow from seeds! Our instructor, Dr. Yael Stav, came over to teach parents and kids how to set up their very own tray of sunflower seeds microgreens.

She showed us the various stages of growing from seed to microgreen, and brought a tray of microgreens for us to taste (with many of us going back for seconds).

Kids and parents then went outside to prepare their very own trays to take home!

Make Your Own Hand-Made Raw Chocolate at Home!

       

Use this easy recipe to make your very own chocolate at home. Add orange zest, raspberries, lavender and more to make your very own customized chocolate! For equipment, you'll need a chocolate mold of your choice or a shallow silicone ice cube tray, a pot and a metal bowl that will fit over it (to serve as your double boiler).

Ingredients:

  • 1 cup        raw cacao butter, finely shaved (organic preferred)
  • 2 tbsp       raw coconut oil (organic preferred)
  • 3/4 cups   dark cacao powder (organic preferred)
    • you can use light cacao powder if that's what you prefer
  • 1 whole     vanilla pod, scraped
  • 2-5 tbsp    honey
  • a pinch      finely ground sea salt

Preparation:

  1. Melt the cacao butter and coconut oil together in a bain marie pot (ie. double boil method) until completely melted.
  2. Add the vanilla beans, half of the honey and the pinch of salt. Whisk together
  3. Gradually add the cacao powder, whisking it in as you go.
  4. Once it fully combines, test the flavour and add more honey if you like it sweeter.
  5. Temper the chocolate be removing it from the heat and allowing it to cool slowly.
  6. When it becomes quite thick, place it back on the double boiler and warm it through again. Repeat this step 3 times.
  7. Pour into any mold of your choice and give it a little tap against your work surface to get rid of any air bubbles.
  8. Finally, set in the fridge.

Notes:

If you're adding lavender, add it in Step 1, allowing the lavender to steep in the melted cacao butter and coconut oil for a bit before straining the lavender out, then resuming with the rest of the steps. 

With any type of zest, add it in Step 1, as with the lavender, but do not strain it out, and continue on with the rest of the recipe.

If you want to add nuts, wait until the last 'phase' of Step 6, chopping them up a bit before adding them in.

If your adding fruit, make sure it's been dried or the extra water from the fruit itself might cause your chocolate to clump. Be sure to sprinkle the fruit into the mixture in Step 7. 

There you have it! A recipe for chocolate that is simple to make and is delicious to eat.

Let us know on Facebook or Twitter if you've made it and how it turned out!

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