Welcome to my new blog series, In the Kitchen With!
Each month I’ll be featuring people with interesting stories, unique points of view, delicious recipes or drool worthy photos. People that I’d love to have over to chat and enjoy a delicious meal with in my kitchen!
So I’m pleased to introduce you this month to Mia Campbell, full time mom and part time recipe developer and content creator here in Calgary!
I met Mia via Instagram and at few bloggers’ events in Calgary a few years ago. I love her approach to food, using wholesome ingredients and creating nutritious recipes that are bright and beautiful too!
Read on for Mia’s full interview answering some of my fav foodie questions including her dream dinner guest, her fav food memory AND her MUST-MAKE recipe for Twi-ckers Bars!
What’s your favorite recipe to make for family or friends?
“Oh that’s a tough one! I don’t think I have one single go-to recipe! When cooking for family or friends, I like to focus on ingredients that are in season and base my recipes off what’s fresh from the farmers market. Right now, I’m LOVING bright salads with hearty grains mixed in. I love how versatile salads can be. You can enjoy them in the morning with eggs, or in the afternoon and evening paired with your choice of protein! They’re also great because you can use what you have on hand, you don’t have to follow a recipe! You can also completely change the flavour profile by simply swapping out dressings. I always like to keep it simple, especially in the spring and summer.”
Who is your dream dinner guest? Would you cook for them or eat at a specific restaurant?
“Well these days I’d really just love to have dinner with my girlfriends! I miss having people over, cooking altogether, creating and connecting over food, and laughing around the table for endless hours. Ideally, everyone would bring a dish they love, whether it’s a family recipe or something from a cookbook they’re currently enjoying. We’d sit around and explain why we chose the specific dish, the components and the flavours. We would eat, drink and laugh… that’s the company I’m really craving. But I’d also love to make a meal with Joana Gaines. I love her ease in the kitchen and emphasis on simple yet satisfying flavours to create crave worthy dishes.”
Do you have a favourite food memory? Perhaps a time you shared with family or friends, a food memory from a trip or a meal you’ll never forget?
“Growing up, I spent a lot of time in my Nonna’s kitchen. Food was at the centre of every get together, big or small. Cooking and eating was a social thing, the more people the better! The food was never complicated, simple dishes, rooted in Italian cooking — lots of bread, salami, cheese, pasta, cutlets, jo-jos and pizzelle cookies (I could eat 50), those are some of my favourite memories! Family and food is at the core of every memory I have growing up.
When it comes to travelling, I am a BIG FOOD PLANNER! I research research research and make lists of all the places I want to eat … there aren’t enough meals in the day to hit every spot haha. One of my favourite spots to eat is actually Erewhon market, in LA. They have an amazing hot food and smoothie bar and so many trendy food products that we don’t have in Canada. I could spend hours wandering, looking and sampling.”
Is there one ingredient from your pantry or fridge that you MUST always have available?
“Oh I’d probably have to go with … peanut butter! It’s is SO versatile, it literally goes with everything — pb oats, pb & banana smoothie, savoury Thai sauce, dates stuffed with pb and chocolate, pb energy bites … I could go on but now I’m just getting hungry ha. It can also be used in my wellthy twi-ckers recipe, they’re a MUST make!”
What’s your favourite snack?
“My go to snack is a smoothie because I can pack it with a variety of nutrient dense foods!”
If you could only have one dish from a restaurant the rest of your life what would it be and which restaurant is it from? Why is this dish just the best?
“Ok my favourite dish is from Estiatorio Milos and it’s their fresh grilled whole fish. But really I could live off any and all seafood, I simply love it. Their lightly fried zucchini and eggplant tower is also to die for! But no meal is complete without dessert, right? My favourite indulgent sweet treat is the chocolate walnut cookie from Levain Bakery.”
I love brunch so if we could hang out in real life and enjoy brunch together, is there a favourite brunch dish you’d make or restaurant we’d meet at?
“Can we travel somewhere and enjoy brunch? We’d fly to LA and eat at Joans on Third! We’d enjoy an iced coffee or matcha, and get an assortment of dishes! One of my favourites is the buttermilk pancakes (we might need two orders)!”
And don’t forget to check out Mia’s must-make recipe for twi-cker bars – “a mix between a twix and skickers bar” but made with better for you ingredients. Trust me when I say they are DROOLWORTHY.
Until the next cooking adventure,
Photos by Mia Campbell