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Recipe Swap: Live well? Eat well?

Become the next ‘Be Well’ storyteller

Everyone loves a great story and it’s even better when the one telling it also lives it.

That’s what you’ll hear and see in the ‘Be Well’ Stories told by Manitobans now found online at

The three inspiring video stories are those of Doug Chorney, East Selkirk farmer and Keystone Agricultural Producer’s president, Getty Stewart, a Winnipeg home economist who started a ‘fruit rescue’ program, and Mary-Jane Feeke, best known as MJ, a red seal chef and owner of Benjamin’s Gourmet Foods in Selkirk.

They tell them via the latest instalment of the Manitoba Canola Growers Association on its online ‘Be Well’ newsletter, blog and magazine.

The ‘Be Well’ site is a link on the MCGA’s website where you’ll find lots of recipes — many have been included on these pages — as well as lots of stories and information about healthy eating and healthy living.

The idea to create video stories was inspired after tremendous feedback about ‘Being Bruce,’ a story posted to the site after Newdale farmer Bruce Dalgarno retired as a director with MCG.

These stories aim to build those partnerships and meaningful connections between farmers and the broader community, said Ed Rempel, MCGA president at a special ‘Be Well’ video launch in Winnipeg last month where Doug, Getty and MJ were special guests.

“Farmers know that today’s consumers want to get to know us better,” said Rempel. “We want that too.”

The story Doug shares is of his family’s 100-year tie to their farm and how, in the 1960s, his mom began a roadside vegetable stand that remains a key part of their family farm’s business. Getty’s story is about starting Fruit Share, and how and why she mobilized hundreds of volunteers to pick and share what would otherwise have been thousands of pounds of wasted homegrown fruit in Winnipeg’s backyards. MJ’s story is of her lifelong love of great food and how her restaurant — perhaps best known for her sumptuous pizzas — has become the place to share that love and loads of great food.

The next part involves you. The MCG is looking to create more video stories in the future and is holding a contest, that includes a $5,000 prize package, in a search for new stories.

So after you’ve been inspired by what you hear and see from Doug, Getty and MJ please nominate someone who you think would be the perfect next ‘Be Well’ storyteller. The contest began February 15 and lasts until April 5.

They’re simply looking for stories about living well, eating well and being well while living passionate lives, says Ellen Pruden, MCG’s education and promotion manager.

“Doug, MJ and Getty are everyday people doing great things,” she said.

“Our intention now is to find that next ‘Be Well’ story. We’re looking to our community to suggest that person.”

To see the ‘Be Well’ stories and find out more about the MCGA’s contest in its search for future stories please log on to at

Here are two recipes selected from one of the complimentary magazines available through the MCGA’s Live Well, Eat Well… Be Well site.

Cool Canola Pastry

This pastry makes a dough that’s easy to roll out for a sweet pie or a savoury dish like a tourtiere.

  • 1/2 c. slivered almonds (skin on)
  • 1-1/2 c. whole wheat flour
  • 2 c. all-purpose flour
  • 3 tbsp. wheat germ
  • 1/2 tsp. baking powder
  • 1/2 tsp. salt
  • 2/3 c. frozen canola oil, chilled in the freezer for two hours*
  • 1/4 c. ice water
  • 1/4 c. low-fat milk
  • 1 egg, beaten slightly
  • 1 tbsp. vinegar

In a food processor, add almonds and pulse once or twice for a coarsely ground consistency. Add flours, wheat germ, baking powder and salt. Pulse once or twice to combine ingredients. Add cold/frozen canola oil. Pulse again once or twice. In a small bowl, combine water, milk, egg and vinegar. With food processor running, pour liquid ingredients through the chute. Turn machine off as soon as ingredients are mixed, about 10 seconds. Turn dough onto floured board. Divide dough in half. Roll out dough on floured surface.

Makes 2 pie crusts or 24 individual tart shells.

You can freeze unused dough.

Nutritional analysis: Based on 1 tart shell

  • Calories 130
  • Protein 3 g
  • Total fat 8 g
  • Saturated fat 0.5 g
  • Cholesterol 10 mg
  • Carbohydrate 14 g
  • Fibre 1 g
  • Sodium 85 mg

*Measure out your canola oil in a container and freeze it. Canola oil will freeze solid overnight. In its frozen state, it mimics a solid fat for baking, giving the light, flaky texture with better health properties.

Jenn’s Chewy Granola Bar

Jennifer Dyck is the education and promotion co-ordinator at Manitoba Canola Growers. She created this recipe when she needed nut-free granola bars to send to school. You can make up a batch with these easy-to-find ingredients.

  • 3/4 c. brown sugar
  • 3/4 c. honey
  • 2/3 c. smooth peanut butter
  • 1/3 c. canola oil
  • 2 tsp. vanilla
  • 1 tsp. cinnamon
  • 1/2 tsp. nutmeg
  • 1/2 c. coconut flakes
  • 1/2 c. raisins
  • 1/2 c. chocolate chips
  • 1/2 c. sliced almonds, skin on
  • 1/2 c. sunflower seeds
  • 1/3 c. wheat bran
  • 2 tbsp. sesame seeds
  • 3 c. large-flake oats

Preheat oven to 325 F. In an extra-large bowl, mix brown sugar, honey, peanut butter, canola oil, vanilla, cinnamon and nutmeg. Mix well. Add coconut, raisins, chocolate chips, almonds, sunflower seeds, bran, sesame seeds and oats. Stir until blended. Line a 9×13-inch pan with parchment paper and spray lightly with canola oil. Press mixture into pan, making sure it is even. Bake for 35 to 40 minutes. Cool in pan. Cut into individual bars. Can be stored in the freezer.

Makes 36 bars.

Nutritional analysis:Based on 1 bar or 1/36th of recipe

  • Calories 240
  • Protein 5 g
  • Total fat 13 g
  • Saturated fat 3 g
  • Cholesterol 0 mg
  • Carbohydrates 30 mg
  • Fibre 3 g
  • Sodium 40 mg

About the author


Lorraine Stevenson

Lorraine Stevenson is a reporter and photographer for the Manitoba Co-operator with 25 years experience writing news and features. She was previously a reporter with the Farmers Independent Weekly and has also written for community newspapers in Winnipeg and Manitoba's Interlake.



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