WHAT'S COOKING: With Richard and Cynthia
Cynthia and Richard really enjoy talking about food and cooking. Discussing their approaches to healthy eating, they were both eager to share their enthusiasm -- they had no shortage of knowledge.
Cynthia is a firm believer that by eating the right foods you can improve your health and well-being. This is certainly the approach she takes when it comes to helping Richard with his diet and advising him about what foods he should be eating to improve his health. When Cynthia and Richard first met in a bar 12 years ago, he invited her over for dinner. When he served her the meal, she looked at the plate and exclaimed, “Everything was white!" She might not have been too impressed by his eating habits then, but a lot has changed and he now is committed to a healthy diet and lifestyle.
Cynthia is particularly interested in homeopathic remedies and using ingredients according to their specific nutritional benefits to help treat different medical conditions. Richard told us how he can go to her with whatever ailments he may have and she will always have a suggestion of what he can eat to help with it. “Turmeric stops inflammation in the body" Cynthia explained, and it was clear she had many more of these top tips!
Richard also talked about going shopping with Cynthia. He described picking out different products and asking her whether they were good for him or not! She a helps with picking out the best and freshest foods. She is quite an expert as she has been doing this since childhood. Growing up she lived by an orchard and her mother would send her out to pick the fruits she wanted to cook. She explained that the darker the fruits and vegetables are, the more vitamins and minerals they will have. Check out the different varieties of fruits and vegetables to find out which have the highest nutritional content.
Much of her knowledge about cooking has come from over 15 years of experience working in the food and catering business. Cynthia had an interesting and diverse career, holding various positions in New York restaurants such as chef, manager and working in consulting roles, where she would help with the organization and design of restaurants. A highlight for her was working at the US Open, helping with the organization of the catering. She even met Billie Jean King at this event! This means Cynthia is well used to catering for large groups, but has more recently learned to scale down her cooking to serve smaller numbers, and also just one. It was after an injury left her unable to stand for long periods of time that she turned to using her knowledge to help others.
Although Richard only has a small cooking area and just a microwave to work with, this doesn’t stop them from creating delicious and healthy meals. Like many people living in New York, Cynthia herself has lived in places with small kitchens so has lots of ideas of how to make the most of this, and for maximizing the potential of microwave cooking. Microwaving is also a healthy way to cook. “When you cook vegetables in a microwave, the vitamins are retained” explained Cynthia. One such healthy recipe Cynthia has created is a microwaved hamburger. “Over years he’s asked for burgers a certain way” she said. After some practice she figured out how to get burgers just right in the microwave.
See Cynthia and Richard’s quick and easy recipe for an avocado appetizer and a microwaved hamburger with cheese, served with sides of spinach and corn on the cob. They promise not only that microwaving will give you a delicious burger, but also that by using lean ground beef, it’s a healthy option too!