Fall trees in Montreal

The 5 best online cooking classes you can take in 2020

Top 5 cooking classes to take online in 2020

The 5 online classes you can take in 2020 to improve your cooking skills.

This time off is a great time to work on some skills that you just didn’t have enough time during your usual busy days. Learning how to cook is an essential skill that is currently being exemplified by this quarantine. With restaurants closed, and having limited options for take-out we are starting to rely on our homemade cooking ability a lot more. Online cooking classes are a great way to start your journey to becoming a better cook. There is something fulfilling about trying to improve yourself and at the same time, you will also be able to impress the next time you host friends and family for dinner! It can be a great way to get inspired and stay busy during this quarantine and well…you can eat your amazing home-cooked meals at the same time, what’s better than that?

plate of vegetables and healthy food

Photo by Ella Olsson on Unsplash

Here are our 5 favourite cooking classes you can start taking right now!

 

1. Instructables

Instructables is a site that teaches you how to make a bunch of different things for free. But what’s especially great is their cooking classes are geared for beginners. It offers an accessible introduction to the world of cooking and how to make easy delicious meals. It also teaches you a variety of things from knife skills to how to properly bake, stewing, roast and more. It is a perfect entry-level online cooking class that you can start if you aren’t very experienced in the kitchen, so what are you waiting for? Sign up, get busy and get ready to feel accomplished!

https://www.instructables.com/class/Cooking-Class/

 

2 people cooking healthy food

Photo by Maarten van den Heuvel on Unsplash

2. Udemy 

Udemy offers a range of different courses for different fields but their cooking section is one of their more interesting selections. Their cooking section is divided into two. One contains free recipes and tutorials and the others you will have to pay for. The free recipes come with ratings and reviews so you can pick and choose which recipes you feel like making based on interest and user feedback. For their premium content, Udemy has certain cooking courses for different prices depending on which ones you want to sign up for. You can expect courses like “Essential Cooking Skills” and “Herbalism”(which is an awesome certificate to get) which really shows you the versatility of the site. Udemy is especially useful if you aren’t really sure what you want to make, or if you want to upscale yourself by completing their classes.

https://www.udemy.com/topic/cooking/free/

 

3. Masterclass

guy and girl cooking in kitchen

Photo by Toa Heftiba on Unsplash

For something really interesting and unique, there is Masterclass which if you don’t know, is a new and different approach to online education for a variety of subjects. It is known as one of the best online cooking schools because the kicker is, is that the people teaching these classes are known celebrities and leaders in their respective fields. The best part about that is their cooking celebrities are really top tier. You can be taught by some culinary giants like Wolfgang Puck, Gordon Ramsay, and Massimo Bottura. They each have their own styles and ways to teach different things so you can see who is a better fit for you. There is also a useful trailer on the courses to get a good idea of what and how you are going to learn. Being taught one on one by these guys naturally doesn’t come free, as a single class can cost you about $120 CAD but keep in mind, these classes are extremely high quality and are made to feel very intimate in order for you to learn as if you were one of their students

https://www.masterclass.com/

4. Rouxbe

Rouxbe is probably one of the most well known online cooking courses you can enroll in right now. Rouxbe is welcoming to all different skill levels and is also a cost-effective entry into the culinary world. You can take on multiple courses like on how to cook and make pasta, how to master your fry pan or do the “The Cook’s Roadmap” which is a course that helps you gradually develop your skills over a set path that tests different skills. What’s especially nice about Rouxbe is that you can go at your own pace and make sure to properly learn what they are teaching you to receive the proper experience. Their membership is available monthly at an affordable $9.99 CAD or at an annual fee of $99.99 CAD. There is however a 30-day free trial which we recommend you try before you buy to see if Rouxbe is best for you!

https://rouxbe.com/

 

5. Thekitchn Cooking School

Thekitchn promises 20 lessons in 20 days for you to be a better cook than you are today for free. It is like a compilation of organized crash courses that are meant to have you learning quickly. The lessons themselves are extremely informative and go into detail about how to properly use the equipment, what to do, what not to do and what you shouldn’t learn for example. The lessons really come across as an honest and realistic approach to cooking at home and it really compliments how their lessons are structured. The lessons usually contain multiple assignments for you to practice what you learned and refine your skills. To us, it creates an almost class like atmosphere which can be a real motivator for some but also allows you to get a strong foundation of culinary knowledge.

https://www.thekitchn.com/


If you are in Montreal you might want to check these cooking classes.

If you want to more things from the comfort of your home, check out:

Farms offering online deliveries in Montreal and surrounding areas

Farms Around Montreal Delivering Produce Online

How to buy food from farms around Montreal?

It is a great alternative than having to wait in line at the grocery store and also a proactive way to not only support your local businesses but also making a conscious effort to socially distancing yourself. Ordering from these farms not only assures you the freshness of the products but also the type of quality you’d expect from one. Different farms specialize in different products so pick one that aligns with your diet choices!


Here is a list of Farms offering online deliveries in Montreal and surrounding areas: 

1. Fermes Valens

Fermes Valens is a farm that started in 1965 and was passed down from generation to generation. They really pride themselves on living a healthy lifestyle which is reflective of the goods they sell. The farm produces a lot of biological and gluten-free options from, grass-fed meats, free-range chicken eggs and gluten-free pasta for example. They have a wide selection of different foods and also has convenient ready to eat options but unfortunately, they do not have fresh fruit or vegetable available at this time. Fermes Valens also has a delivery schedule for Montreal and its surrounding areas but be sure to click their ‘delivery’ tab to make sure they deliver to your area!

If you want to find out more check them out at https://www.fermesvalens.com/

Vegetables and Groceries in a bag on a table

2. Potager Mont-Rouge

Potager Mont-Rouge is a family-run farm that really focuses on what is currently in season so you can get the freshest and tastiest produce. However, the opposite of Fermes Valens, Potager-Mount Rouge has a great selection of fresh fruits and vegetables but does not have a meat selection. They do however have a great weekly selection in which some specified items go on sale and would be wise to take advantage of this when possible. They also offer a weekly themed basket of fruits and vegetables which can also be an interesting choice! Mont-Rouge, unfortunately, does not deliver to Montreal so be wary.

Check them out: https://www.potagermont-rouge.ca/

strawberries in their baskets in a market

3. Le Panier Bleu

To put it simply Le Panier Blue is an initiative from the Quebec government to get us to buy our products locally. Le Panier Bleu actually doesn’t sell anything specific (right now) rather they are a medium in which you can look up what you are looking for and will point you to multiple Quebecois online stores to purchase from. This way, it creates a hub of completely local businesses that when you purchase something you can be sure your money goes to our local entrepreneurs. This list also includes multiple farmers around the region which by putting your address in, you can see the different farms that can deliver to you. Le Panier Bleu really stresses the importance of preemptively reinvesting into our economy to help Quebec’s people and economy get through this, which we think is a great idea. The site is still in its early phases as it plans to expand to be able to directly buy from the site itself so make sure to stay updated, we know we will!

You can find more info at https://lepanierbleu.ca/

selection of vegetables

4. Jardin Des Anges

  1. Jardin des Anges is another farm focused on selling and providing organic produce. What is particularly awesome about the farm is that they not only sell their own produce but help support smaller local farmers by selling their farm’s specialties on their site. They also have some different items week per week depending on what’s in season. This farm has the widest variety of products available compared to the rest of the farms on our list. It provides a healthy choice of vegetables, meats, fruits and also has other complimentary products. The site itself is easily navigatable and what we enjoy is that there are filters in which you can easily identify if a product is from their garden, from Quebec, imported or a  Canadian product so you always know where your money is going.

The farm delivers to Montreal and its surrounding areas but be sure to check to see if they can deliver to your specified address first!

Visit them at https://www.jardindesanges.com/en/

 

Pro tip: Check out our “The 5 best online cooking classes you can take in 2020”

 article to find ways to best use your fresh new produce!

Best Motivational Books by Canadian Authors

(Opinion Article | Please note: Article includes Affiliate links to Amazon)

With isolation upon us, it’s the time to find alternative ways to lift our spirits and try to break free of the mold of our current mundane situation. We decided it would be an ideal time to introduce our top 5 inspirational books by Canadian authors to help you along that path. A motivator of sorts, we believe that inspirational books are a great way to spark a positive change in our everyday lives.


What are the best motivational and inspirational books written by Canadian Authors?

Here is a list of the Top 5 inspirational books by Canadian authors:

1. Anne of Green Gables by Lucy Maud Montgomery

We wanted to start off with a true Canadian classic. Originally published in 1908 it is a book that most Canadians have probably read in elementary school if not at least one point in their lives. Regardless of if you read it or not it is an incredible book to discover or revisit. The general premise is that Anne is trying to escape her stale life in Prince Edward Island by using her imagination to overcome her hurdles in life. It is a light story of pure fun and is truly a joy to read.

Find it at: https://amzn.to/2UGyNWz

2. The Camino Within  by Tarek Riman

Montreal tips founder Tarek Riman wrote “The Camino Within” about his adventure by bike along the Camino de Santiago in Spain. He dropped everything at home to pursue his journey and wrote this book about his experiences while there. He wanted more out of life and opted to get a change of scenery and took on a challenge that would change his perspectives and gain clarity on life. The book follows Tarek through his series of encounters, lessons, and trials while trying to find the true meaning of life. It really pushes its readers to find out they are capable of and to simultaneously encourage you to take a new journey of your own!Find it at: https://amzn.to/3aOudLS

The Camino Within Book

3. Dual Citizens by Alix Ohlin Montreal Born

Alix Ohlin, a Montreal born author wrote her inspiring book called “Dual Citizens”. “Dual Citizens” is about Lark Brossard our main protagonist whos mostly felt invisible throughout her life. She, like everybody else, has her issues with a variety of things but it is in the way she handles herself and the situation at hand which is admirable and can really stay with you as a reader. It is a wonderful coming-of-age story that branches out into relationships with her lover, mother and especially her sister who plays a crucial role in the novel. Without giving away too much, it is a powerful novel that tackles themes such as ambition, self-knowledge, and sisterhood.
Find it at: https://amzn.to/2wiE0L6

4. The Better Angels of Our Nature By Steven Pinker

As we could all use a little bit of good news these days, “Angels of Our Nature” certainly delivers in that aspect. The book is essentially about how violence has declined in the short and long run in the world. He backs this theory up with data while also highlighting certain reasons as to why it is on the decline. Pinker also suggests how our generation is currently one of the most peaceful eras in human history in which explains why and how in the book. Overall, its a book with a positive message which we can surely use right now. It’s also worth mentioning that Bill Gates once tweeted that it is one of the most inspiring books he’s ever read.

Find it at: https://amzn.to/39OgMu4

5. Chorus of Mushrooms by Hiromi Goto

For something a little different, “Chorus of Mushrooms” is simply about her family in a small town in Alberta. It goes into detail about the generations of Japanese women in her family. The story delves into Japanese folk legends and also has some rom-com mixed in. It offers an interesting perspective about somebody’s cultures and traditions while also keeping it a light and pleasant read.

Find it at: https://amzn.to/2V2BmRL

Date: March 28, 2010 | Author: Adriano | Category: Health Recommendations 


The top 5 workout equipment to workout from home with

In-Home Fitness Equipment

(Opinion Article | Please note: Article includes Affiliate links to Amazon)

With the gyms being closed down it has become harder for people to stay active. While we can go for walks and runs sometimes it is not enough. While we are in quarantine it is important to, first of all, be safe but can also be a period for inner growth. Remaining active during this time is really important and can really be a morale booster for your physical and mental health. Looking good makes you feel good so we suggest picking up some home gym equipment to get you to stay active during these trying times.


TRX

The first option we suggest is the TRX which are suspension body-weight trainers. The great thing about these is that they are usable indoors and outdoors so you can complete a full-body workout wherever you have something sturdy to attach it to. The TRX is also beginner-friendly and a great addition for people with gym experience. It really shines as a product because of the versatility of exercises you can do with it. 

What makes the TRX a worthwhile investment is that it has a very healthy post-purchase support. They have a great app available but we also especially like the fact that it provides its users with free workouts for those who don’t really know where to start or for those who are new to the TRX. It is also space-efficient and is an overall great choice for anybody looking to stay active during the outbreak.

TRX

Photo by Matthew LeJune on Unsplash

 

You can find the TRX through its homepage at https://www.trxtraining.com/ or on Amazon.com. On the homepage, however, they have different options for the TRX and also have fitness bundles which can be an interesting option as well.

Price: ~$179 (depending on what package you get)


Door Frame Pull Up Bar

Attachable pull-up bars are a great way to keep active during the quarantine. The concept is simple as you can do only a couple exercises with it but are powerful ones as they are not for the faint of heart. The pull-up bar is a great upper body workout that is really challenging to anyone because you are lifting your own dead weight up. It is also one of the most effective exercises you can do as it hits a majority of your upper body. 

We believe that a door frame pull-up bar also has a psychological effect on some people. Seeing the pull-up bar acts almost like a reminder for you to get a few reps in whenever you pass by the door. If you manage to keep up with this you will see that your strength will increase very quickly. This could be a perfect fit for you if you’re having trouble staying committed to remaining active while you are at home.


Power Tower

A power tower is something that is extremely versatile when it comes to what workouts you can accomplish on it. It is basically like a station at the gym with multiple functions, for instance, there is a pull-up section, push-up station, a dip station as well as a knee raise station. 

The main muscle groups it targets are the arms, chest, shoulders, and core. You can really get a full upper-body workout because of the flexibility of a power tower. Keep in mind that for a Power Tower you will need some space in your house to set this up!

There are other options but here is where you can start your research. 

Find it at: https://amzn.to/3bukMki

Price: $157 


Kettlebells

Kettlebell’s for those who don’t know, are essentially an iron or steel metal ball with a handle on it. The beauty of a kettlebell is its ability to be used for a variety of different workouts, from the upper body to lower body exercises you can really get a high-intensity workout in. You can easily find kettlebell workouts online and are an easy way for you to stay active at home. Kettlebells are extremely easy to use and don’t need a lot of space to be used efficiently. You can also store a kettlebell fairly easily so there is no issue for them taking space.

Kettlebell exercises are known to improve flexibility, overall muscular strength, core strength and helps burn fat and keep muscle lean. They are a great tool in anyone’s fitness toolbox because of their flexibility.

Find some at: https://amzn.to/3bpCDJk

Price:~starting at $25 but price increases with heavier kettlebells

 

Photo by Jesper Aggergaard on Unsplash


Rowing Machine

Rowing Machine

Photo by Kyle Kranz on Unsplash

Many swear by rowing machines as they are a great way to engage your whole body and keep the calories off. It is something that you can do in a short amount of time as well like 15-minute workouts which are high intensity but deliver solid results. If you are someone who wants something simple that will challenge you every time you get on, a rowing machine can be perfect for you. It is an amazing cardio machine that has really outmatched the treadmill and exercise bikes because of its capabilities to be able to train more than just legs while keeping thew rhythm at a high tempo.

What’s great about a rowing machine is that you are able to challenge yourself without hurting yourself. It is a safe machine that minimizes injuries and you can really push hard to try and beat your previous rowing stats. A rowing machine excels when it comes to burning calories and building a good foundation for your muscles to be stronger and better defined. 

Like all the equipment on the list, you can easily find workout programs for rowing so you can try something different every time. Rowing machines don’t take up too much space and can be easily folded and stored for future use. While it is the most expensive item on our list it is definitely worth the investment because of the dividends it could pay off for you.

Find one at: https://amzn.to/2QOrEkV

Price: $900

 

 


Bonus: If you really want to challenge yourself try to pick up a weighted vest from Amazon. They add 20-50 pounds to your current weight. They are a relatively cheap expense that can bring out some big change as it really pushes you to work for that extra weight on you. It will make every single workout that much harder and can also be used as an additional accessory to every single piece of equipment on our list.

Top 10 things to do indoors in Canada

Top 10 Home Activities During the Coronavirus Outbreak

  1. Read that book you’ve been putting off

    Most of us have that book or series that we’ve been wanting to read forever but haven’t gotten the chance to do it for a multitude of reasons. Why not decide to go for it while you have the time? We know we have a few from our list that we’re getting to (or trying to do so, at the very least)!

  2. Create a list of movies and tv-shows you’ve been wanting to watch

    In the same space as reading that book, take this opportunity to finally get around to those movies and tv-shows that your friends have been begging you to watch, but have always been putting off to watch something else.

  3. Video chat with friends

    Use your Skype, WhatsApp, Facetime, Zoom or whatever app you use to stay in touch with your friends. Having face to face contact is sometimes better than texts, besides, who doesn’t like seeing their friends?

  4. Have a board game night with some close friends

    Speaking of video chats, Is there anything that brings you back to childhood faster than a board game night with friends? Make the effort and ask your friends to have a couple of games through video chat. Our favorite is Dungeons & Dragons which can easily be played over video or voice chat!

  5. Workout at home with yoga and bodyweight exercises

    With gyms being closed, it could be a good opportunity to keep up or start with bodyweight exercises. Some great programs can be found with a simple google search. Motivate yourself to take the leap! We also encourage you to try yoga as it is a great workout and a fantastic stress reliever.

  6. Get ahead on some spring cleaning

    This could be an opportunity to get ahead on something that we know is coming up for most, the dreaded spring cleaning. We suggest listening to podcasts or audiobooks while doing the cleaning to keep you interested for longer!

  7. Work on a new hobby

    Being indoors is a great time to try out a new hobby! Whether it is trying new recipes you’ve been wanting to do or a learning language on Duolingo to picking up a new instrument. Learning new hobbies can really be a fulfilling and rewarding experience.

  8. Do some home projects

    If you’ve been planning on moving furniture or wanting to repaint a room, now would be a great time to take advantage!

  9. Take online classes

    If you’re like us and love to learn, consider taking online classes when and where they are available. Usually, you can use your local university site as a starting point in your search for a course. They’re very informative and can maybe spark an interest you didn’t think was there.

  10. Start a journal

    We find journaling to be a very relaxing way to spend the time. So why not give it a shot? If you’ve had stuff on your mind, want to write down an epic story or you just want to organize yourself better, start journaling, it could be a cathartic outlet for you to put your ideas and thoughts on paper at this particular point in time.

Bonus: Google chrome has released the Netflix Party extension so you can watch Netflix at the same time as your friends, another way to stay contacted and do things together at the same time.