Volunteering at Marni’s Food Studio and Lifestyle Shop

April 4, 2015

Last week, I had the pleasure of volunteering at Marni Wasserman’s Food Studio and Lifestyle Shop, offering a variety of organic plant-based hands on cooking classes, workshops, studio retreats in midtown Toronto.

Marni was very friendly and greeted me when I arrived.

The studio was bright, clean, and very welcoming. Pantries were filled with all my favourite organic products and many more other things that I had never even seen or used before. I was so ecstatic to be there and literally felt like a little kid at Disneyland. Oh, I must mention she had an indoor sprouting cultivator in the kitchen! So cool! There were fresh sunflower seed sprouts and pea sprouts that were growing in there. Oh, it’s my dream kitchen!!

So.. time for the cooking class

We had several cooking stations laid out with all the required ingredients.

During the class, Marni was very mindful in giving super helpful instructions on what to look out for in the recipe like how you can incorporate other items or substitutes. She was also very diligent in making sure her students understand the health-benefits of each meal being prepared.

Interesting fact I learnt in clas: beet skin is toxic and should never be eaten.

She truly makes an effort on helping her students transition to a plant-based diet on many different levels. For instance, we would discuss how vegans/vegetarians can dine out with friends that do eat meat-lovers without feeling like there are absolutely no options to choose from. Or how to ask the right questions when you’re eating out, teaching the group how to be comfortable asking servers what is used in the food they cook at the restaurant.

I think it would be an understatement to call this just a cooking class, because it’s not just a simple cooking class where the teacher gives you directions, you cook and… end of story.

It was a class that holistically teaches people how to transition, sustain, and live a healthy, plant-based lifestyle. It was an experience that inspires me to think outside the box when cooking with normal everyday plant-based ingredients. I also left feeling more excited than ever to try the recipes and even add my own spin to things when I get home!

I think Marni’s passion really shines through in her classes. Even for those who are not vegetarian or vegan, it wouldn’t hurt to learn how to add fun and creativity into your every day cooking with plant-based recipes.

Marni offers a large variety of classes at her studio throughout the year. Check out her cooking class schedule and sign yourself up for a class!

Sauces, Sides and Dips Cooking Class

A list of the yummy-in-my-tummy dishes we made:

  • Maple Balsamic Dressing & Green Salad

  • Collards with Portobello Mushrooms

  • Garlic Oregano Yam Fries

  • Roasted Maple, Beet and Avocado Salad

  • Spinach Almond Patties

I really want to share the Spinach Almond Patties recipe with you guys.

It’s easy to make, very versatile and can be prepared in bulks so you can freeze it and have it ready to be eaten whenever you’re short on time.

I recommend adding a simple tahini-miso sauce or any saucy sauces you like to go along with this! It’s absolutely delicious!

Spinach Almond Patties Recipe

(recipe in courtesy of Marni @ Marni Wasserman Food & Lifestyle Studio)

  • 20 minutes to prep

  • 30 minutes cooking

  • 10 full serving

  • Storage:

    • 4 days in the fridge

    • 2 months in the freezer


  • 1 bunch fresh spinach
  • 1 medium onion, chopped
  • 1 1/4 cups ShaSha wheat free bread crumbs
  • 1 1/2 cup ground almonds, divided into two 3/4 cup portions
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 2 tablespoons tamari
  • 1/2 cup brown rice flour
  • 1 teaspoon dried dill


1. Preheat oven to 350 degree Farenheit. Place spinach and onions in food processor and blend on high until a coarse paste begins to form. Add the bread crumbs, ¾ cups ground almonds, oil, tamari, rice flour, dill and blend again until all of the ingredients are combined.

2. Fill a small bowl with water for wetting your hands while rolling the balls. Place the remaining ¾ cup ground almonds on a large plate.

3. Begin rolling the spinach mixture into small balls, and then roll each ball in the ground almonds, coating the outside of each ball.

4. Place the finished balls on lightly oiled cookie sheet.

5. When sheet is full, place in pre heated oven for 30 minutes. 6. Allow balls to cool on the sheet and place them in a bowl or on a platter.

Stay tuned for my next blog on insider tips from Marni Wasserman on how to sustain a healthy, nutritious, plant-based diet!

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