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Food and Drink

What's in your fridge? Between the shelves at home with Joan and Marcel Richoz



Between the shelves at home with Joan and Marcel Richoz


This kicks off What’s in your fridge? in which we take a real-time peek inside the refrigerators of Whistler residents — young and old, old and new — and ask age-old questions like, what on Earth is that doing in there? Or, what the heck do you do with blue corn meal, anyway? More to the point, it’s an excuse to talk about the food people eat and why, and share a story or recipe along the way.  


By Glenda Bartosh

Long-time Whistler residents Joan and Marcel Richoz have lived in the eclectic 16-sided house they built on the ridge above Drifter Way in Alpine Meadows for 33 years. There they’ve raised their children, Noah, 27, who is a day trader and digital video engineer in Vancouver, and Marika, 32, who is a realtor in Whistler. The Richoz’ refrigerator is a Kenmore that’s about three years old. Perched against a cedar plank wall between the stove and the granite countertops, it’s an inscrutable slab of stainless steel that would have a beautiful view of Blackcomb and Whistler if only it could see.

I confess that the main reason I wanted to start with the Richoz’ fridge in my cold-call investigations is that Joan and Marcel were the first authentic vegetarians I’d ever met (notice the past tense — a bit of fish has entered their diet). Most vegs I knew in California or Hawaii cheated one way or another.

They’re also the only vegetarians I knew at the time who were — and still are — happy and healthy. They certainly don’t subsist like monks doing penance. I mean look at what’s in their fridge!

First off, it’s nearly full. They’ve just gotten back from Mexico and had to re-stock, plus Joan is making a big dinner this weekend to commemorate a friend who recently passed away.

Surprisingly, the first thing out of her mouth when she opens the door is a slightly puzzled little “Oh!” Marika’s dog’s chew-toy is sitting on top of the wheat germ. Best to keep moving, so what else is in there?

Organic quinoa, buckwheat flour, yellow corn flour and, yes, blue corn meal. So what the heck do you do with blue corn meal? Make two of Joan’s favourite dishes for company, both out of the rebar modernfoodcookbook from the terrific rebar restaurant in Victoria.

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