On The Wild Side With: Food Migration

Inspired by a traditional Taiwanese snack, Ethan of Food Migration has created a line of bite sized treats perfect for tea lovers.

Where I came from, Taiwan, people enjoyed tea on daily basis. Traditionally, these type of snacks are often enjoyed with tea. As Chinese drink tea with no sugar or milk added, the taste of tea could sometime be dry (or astringent) and bitter. Little sweets like ChaNut serve perfectly in tea drinker’s mouth and balance out less wanted sensation with mild sweetness and nuttiness. That’s why we call it perfect snack of tea.

Food Migration’s brand most familiar to market customers is called ChaNut, which has a more meaningful connection to its purpose as a compliment to tea than some may realize.

Our brand name ChaNut is actually the combination of Chinese phonic of tea, “Cha” and English word “Nuts,” which we are hoping will catch the spirit of tea and deliver the message to our customers.

There are currently three lines of ChaNut creations. Depending on the flavour, their main ingredients range from peanuts, to pumpkin and black sesame seeds, all bound by malt syrup, giving them their distinct and unifying flavour.

It’s actually my mother’s recipe. She cracked the formula from the traditional snack, we have in Taiwan. My Mom, like most of the parents, disbarred all kinds of junky snack. As nut gaining its popularity in the recent years, she decided to make her own snack. I learned from her after she proudly shared it with me on my trip back home couple years ago. I did tweak the recipe a bit afterward, but the basic taste is inherited from my mother.

Ethan says he used to think inspiration to create new food products was like a sparkle, coming from nowhere and caused by many of happy coincidences. Now he says new flavours are first inspired by the familiarity of Taiwan recipes and are then given a Canadian twist.

We ask our friends and family from time to time and improve the product base their feedback as well, trying to find the taste that can relate to our community. I guess you can say the inspiration is from where I am from and where I live now, and its a combination of who we are.

With its current success, Food Migration is looking to further migrate its favourite foods into the Canadian market. Ethan says he hopes products will continue to perk customers interest.

Much like a friend sharing great stuff with each other, I am hoping Food Migration would be your foodie friend. We hope the customer to know that ChaNut is a great healthy nutty snack, a great product before or after work out, and most importantly its a snack they could enjoy in any given day.

On The Wild Side With: Oyster & King

(Courtesy of Oyster & King)

Did you know cultivated mushrooms are grown differently than other produce? Most are apart of a group of fungi called, saprobes, which feed off of and lie within decaying organic materials such as wood and straw, not soil. Coming this summer, customers of the farmers market will have the chance to purchase mushrooms grown from a unique blend of such materials thanks to Oyster and King!

Our mushrooms are grown on our unique substrate combination of wood chips and other organic materials and are delivered locally daily to guarantee freshness and quality.

(Courtesy of Oyster & King)

David Xiao of Oyster King says to grow mushrooms, carbon is derived from wood or straw, but accessible nitrogen is usually added in the form of bran, composted animal manure, or other means.

It is an labour intensive process in strictly controlled environment that is
by default organic, and sustainable operations operate much like a factory rather than a farm.

Mushroom growth is dependent on a maintenance of a narrow range of C/N ratio (for fertile compost), pH, temperature, and humidity.

David says oyster mushrooms grow at an ideal temperature of 10-24°C, making the spring and fall seasons the ideal time of year to grow.

Wild mushrooms have unique requirements for fruiting, and fruit throughout various times of the year. Morels pop in the late spring and summer, and chanterelles, lobsters and others come with the early rains of the fall wherever it is moist.

Fun fact: Did you know fungi were among the first organisms to colonize land beside plants? There is speculation that they had an early symbiosis with plants and this aided them in doing so.

Now you know!

Getting To Know: Royal City Donuts

(Courtesy of Royal City Donuts)

Calling all donut lovers! The much anticipated, Royal City Donuts will be participating in the Coquitlam Farmers Market this season. But before digging in, here’s some more information about who they are and what their products are all about.

Jonathan and his wife, along with their team of fellow donut lovers want customers to experience the balance of unique ingredients that are put into each batch of their donuts.

I want them [customers] to think they are getting more than they expected in terms of flavour and quality.

Royal City Donuts has strived to bring a European style treat, made by hand with care and quality ingredients into the local market. With an expanding team and an eye for food trends, we can expect new things from the company.

My wife has contributed greatly, and now with two members joining the team we are starting to forecast a month in advance with ideas to play with. The trends in the food scene are also very influential with sweet and savoury being so predominant.

(Courtesy of Royal City Donuts)

Continuously forecasting a month in advance, Jonathan says himself and his team are always mindful to balance new blends of interesting flavours while still maintaining the integrity of the donut.

Once you do a few markets or pop ups in the same place you want to keep things interesting and give people a reason to check you out again and again.

With excitement building around the company, Jonathan says Royal City Donuts will concentrate on summer markets for now, but talks about what’s next for the company are already in the works.

We would love to have our own, industrial space where we can do higher production for breweries, coffee shops, corporate and large scale orders while having a small store front where people can get their fix.

Royal City Donuts already has a supply partnership with Hive Cafe in New Westminster and customers can expect continued creativity with their donuts.