I daydream about food. In lecture, walking to campus, and even the moment I finish one meal I’m immediately thinking about what I’ll eat next. So, naturally, during a recent lecture, suddenly the thought struck me: What do my professors eat? What are their favourite foods? Are they budding chefs or fast food junkies?
To answer my questions, I sat down with three UTM professors and asked them to take me through their day at UTM meal by meal. From homemade BLTs to pots of Earl Grey tea and sauce-making, we chatted about what they like to eat and why.
I always have a half-caffeine, half-decaf cappuccino to start my day. I love coffee. It’s one of my top three favourite flavours. I feed my children their breakfast and give them their vitamins before having an apple cinnamon smoothie with protein powder. I’m out the door and heading to UTM by 9:00 a.m.
I typically pack a salad for lunch, usually something with quinoa, but I was in a rush this morning. Instead, I have a cashew coconut bar, baby carrots (left over from my children’s packed lunches), and a large honey crisp apple. With such a sad lunch, I grab a second coffee, a latte from Second Cup. I don’t like buying coffee from a corporate coffee chain, and I wish UTM had its own independent student-run coffee bar.
My family and I eat in almost every night. Once I’m home, I pour myself a glass of red wine and we start cooking. Since everyone is tired by the end of the week, Friday night is often BLT night. Our BLTs include homemade mayonnaise, Ontario tomatoes, and Rowe Farms bacon. (My daughter, who loves animals, tries to limit herself to only two pieces of bacon.) My partner bakes our bread, but BLTs call for a loaf of fluffy, white bread from our local Cobb’s bakery. After dinner, we have dessert. That night I have a Coconut Bliss ice cream bar. We don’t have dessert every night, but I think it’s important to treat yourself to something sweet. In fact, I love baking, particularly cakes, but I’m still trying to improve my icing skills.
ASSOCIATE PROF & CHAIR
ENGLISH & DRAMA
When I get up I make myself an espresso with freshly ground coffee beans to jolt me awake in the morning. I have Dorset Cereals brand cereal with blueberries and almond milk. To sustain the caffeine the espresso provided me, I prepare a pot of Fortnum and Mason Earl Grey tea. Afterwards, I’m on my way to UTM.
Generally, after I wrap up my Shakespeare lecture at UTM I don’t have lunch. But if I do, it’s a slice of rye sourdough bread from Woodlot, a restaurant and bakery on College Street, a slice of whatever cheese is available from my neighbourhood deli, and some almond butter.
Between meetings and administrative work I have a second espresso. I make another pot of Earl Grey tea and snack on some 70% dark chocolate.
My partner and I don’t eat a lot of meat and we go through vegetarian phases. However, I usually slide back to meat because I find it easier and more fun to cook. I have a European style of cooking. I like to cook Italian, rice, or one-pot dishes. That night I cook my favourite fallback dinner: a warm salad of mango, avocado, pan-fried chicken, and brown rice. We eat dinner while watching Netflix. I make one more pot of tea before settling in to work on my own research and writing for another three or four hours.
Knowing that there are some leftovers in the historical studies’ departmental fridge, I have a light breakfast of a banana and a cup of orange pekoe tea. I eat as I make my daughter’s packed lunch. I take the shuttle bus to UTM, arriving late because of an accident on the highway.
I heat up the leftover lasagna from the department’s Prandium lecture series and eat it in a meeting with the HIS101 TAs. We all eat together: the TAs are always hungry after a morning full of tutorials!
As a mid-afternoon snack, I eat an apple at my desk. I often eat apples, nuts, and seeds in the mid-morning or mid-afternoon at work, especially if I’m getting ready for a lecture.
At my house, every Friday is pizza and video night. I assemble two types of pizzas, one for my daughter and the other for my partner and me. While both begin with a tomato sauce, grated mozzarella cheese, and green and black olives, the second one also includes spinach, mushrooms sautéed in garlic and butter, red peppers, and sundried tomatoes.
I also make a salad to have on the side. It begins with a selection of bitter greens followed by cooked beets, nuts, and sliced ripe pear. I finish it with a dressing of olive oil, balsamic vinegar, Dijon mustard, and salt.
After dinner, we have fresh fruit for dessert. I am more of a cook than a baker, and I love cooking sauces to the point that I splurged on a Le Creuset saucier pan. My favourite sauces to make are béchamel and hollandaise. On certain nights I like to cook from historical recipes. Recently, I made a delicious sweet and savory tourte d’herbes from a 17th-century New France recipe book that I picked up in Trois-Rivières in Quebec. With history being a passion of mine, I tend to look at everything, including food, through a historical lens.