Cheryl Millett

Cheryl Millett
Story Setting – City Town or Rural:
Story Setting – Province or Territory:
Current Province or Territory:

List some highlights of or reasons to visit the area that you mention/represent in the book.  Why would we want to go there? When is the best time to travel there, and why?

Toronto has something for everyone. Where do I begin? This city is multicultural and diverse with areas dedicated to other cultures, such as, Greek town and Chinatown. Lively events are happening constantly going on from Salsa on St. Clair to the Beaches Blues Festival. Toronto has thrilling adventures, such as, one can stand upon the top or close to it outside of the CN Tower, called the SkyWalk. Toronto comes with a waterfront that stretches across the city where people walk or bike for hours. Green! Yes, Toronto has many parks, ravines, and trails all within the city starting with High Park. By ferry, you can reach the local island in no time at all to spend time on its beaches, taking in the nature with many wildlife such as swans, and other attractions and events for all ages. The Art Gallery of Ontario, Royal Ontario Museum, the National Ballet, the new Canadian Opera House bring culture and education to the forefront. People are friendly and helpful. There will be entertaining concerts, plays from Broadway as well as local theatre, and more to entertain. The food varies from Irish pubs to fine dining including just about any food from around the world. Perhaps a sport game would attract people? Some would not miss the summertime CNE or Canadian National Exhibition, and there is always the Royal Winter Fair for all ages with animals, horse shows, butter sculptures, and brings us closer to the land. Toronto is open all year round so no matter the weather, you will find plenty to do and plenty to see in and nearby the city. Transportation with subway and trains can easily carry you where you need to go, even to and fro from the airport whether that is the Island airport or the International airport. Summertime sun by the waterfront, there’s nothing like it with outdoor concerts and events! Colours of fall and close by vineyards for the wine lovers! These would be my two favourite times for hanging out with my tourist friends. One of my favourite things about Toronto is the farmer’s markets and its fresh healthy food selection…and they go on all year round.

What is one of your first memories in a kitchen? Who was with you? Do you remember how old you were when you started helping or cooking in the kitchen, if allowed? How did it make an impact on you if you were or were not allowed to help or cook?

My first memory in the kitchen was when I was helping my Stepmother to make shortbreads. I would have been a teenager at the time. Because I liked the shortbreads so much, I really wanted to learn how to make them. My Stepmother Jeannine was a good cook and made interesting things like homemade chocolates and perogies from scratch. She would do the cooking and I enjoyed watching when I could. It showed me what was possible beyond my earlier years of eating meat, potatoes, and canned vegetables. This inspired me and gave me confidence after I moved away from home.

What is your favorite food or meal to eat – even if someone else prepares it – in this season? What about each or any season? Do your food preferences change during holiday times (statutory or vacation)? Explain how or why as the case may be.

My favourite food is a bowl of baked beans/soup/stew along with some Irish soda/sourdough bread, and a salad. Baked beans 2-3x per year is a tradition for me to make between Nov and Mar. Turkey is a preference during Thanksgiving and another at Christmas. After all, it makes a great soup afterwards. For either, I invite my friends to dinner at my home. It is a grand way for friends to come together and enjoy a good traditional meal and each other’s company at my expense of loving to cook good healthy wholesome food.  Food preferences change during celebrations like birthdays. This is where the special likes come forth like Haystacks, and the good china and silverware appear on the table to be sure. Wild foods come into play in the various seasons such as mulberries and blueberries. Other such delights have to be eating right away such as wild grapes. This is where foraging, eating, meeting strangers, and walking the dog happen all at the same time.

Who would you like to eat with from the past or present? It can be a regular occurrence or just a one-time event if you’d rather. Why are these people important to you?

From the past, I would like to eat with a Druid in Ireland, or a Mayan in Mexico. I am very curious about both of these cultures because one they are not on this planet at the moment and two, they may have knowledge of foods that we have lost.

In the present, I welcome eating some fresh raw seal meat with the Inuit people. Currently, I have eaten twice at a restaurant in Toronto that serves raw seal meat. Yummy! If seared, then it tastes like liver which I have grown to love over the years. I would like to spend time with the Inuit people in their habitat once a year. My current goal is to consume raw seal meat at this Toronto restaurant once a month. I honor these people in how they lived and some still do live close to nature as their elders did before them. In 2008, my introduction to this began when I started consuming, then selling, and then presenting about seal oil.

What drew you to this food story project? Why was it important for you to contribute?

I love stories of all kinds and I knew Canada would have plenty of them. Loretta also indicated that there would be recipes from across Canada and a mix. It was important to share a good ole Canadian recipe that I discovered with others. This recipe came from Pierre Berton, a fellow Canadian, and a recipe that has an interesting background, the Klondike Gold Rush, and deemed as a Canadian dish around the world. It all started when I was studying English for a Travel Program. I read a short ‘how to essay’ on making baked beans written by no other than Berton. Today, many friends and neighbours take much pleasure in eating these delicious globes of dark brown beans.

How did sharing your story and recipe touch you? Were other people in your circles affected too? How so?

It was like sharing a piece of Canada, and the history of the gold rush where one could imagine a person peeling back the foil to expose some frozen beans but as they traveled down into the stomach the chilly day would be warmed by the chilies in the beans. It is a recipe that many enjoy and they were truly delighted that I picked this one as I love making them and feel much joy from making them every time – t’is the season to make a roasting pan full. When telling others about contributing, they were very excited and several people were excited to receive a copy of the book – autographed.

Do you have passions or projects or professions you’d like to share? Please include any related links so that we can support you. Social media channels/handles are very okay to list as well!

My projects that I am passionate about are several but I would gladly share the Forest Hill Walk Club that helps to build community, the Ireland Hiking holidays for groups where all is welcome to take in the breathtaking scenery, ancient castles and ruins with the new Irish cuisine, the True Nature Retreats for those looking for an inner nature adventure and growth inclusive of home cooked organic foods, and finally my first book titled “All Guts, All Glory – the digestive system on stage partnered with the nervous system” coming soon to print. It would be crazy not to mention the seal oil or mammalian omega 3s that comes from the Inuit people. Lastly, I would share an organization that is bringing together the holistic businesses and practitioners for the greater community. Like the baked beans there is depth of many flavours here, so I encourage people to go to my website for blogs and consulting information, but also for educational and light hearted healthy talk encouraging us all to ask questions and take responsibility for our health. #ForYourBetterHealth #HCCToronto #AllGutsAllGlory #cherylmillett

Forest Hill Walk Club

Ireland Hiking Holiday

True Nature Retreats

Raw seal oil

Holistic Chamber of Commerce