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True North Living » Live » The Advantages of Growing and Cooking at Home

An indoor garden lets you create delicious, nutritious, home-cooked meals with home-grown ingredients — and explore a new world of flavours.

Just Vertical is a Canadian company whose mission is to build a sustainable solution to feed and save our planet. The AEVA by Just Vertical is an all-in-one indoor garden, lets people grow fresh produce from the comfort of their own homes.

With COVID-19 orders restricting restaurant businesses to take-out only, many Canadians are rediscovering the joys, health benefits, and cost-savings of cooking at home using fresh foods.

Indoor gardening takes you a step beyond — letting you easily grow your own rich variety of fresh produce in your house, apartment, or condo.

Many advantages to growing food at home

“The Just Vertical system lets you grow pretty much anything that isn’t a root or a tree,” says Conner Tidd, one of the company’s Co-Founders. This includes six different types of strawberries, 12 varieties of basil, a host of greens and even some hybrids like wasabi arugula — ideal for salads or sandwiches.

As social distancing is expected to continue into the summer months, indoor gardening can be an enjoyable home activity for the entire family. With over 200 varieties of edible plants that can be grown in Just Vertical’s indoor gardening system, there’s no shortage of delectable culinary masterpieces waiting to be created.

AEVA indoor garden system

“What’s nice about indoor gardening is you get to choose the foods you want and the variety of that food that you want,” says Tidd. “That way you can get unique flavours in your cooking that you can’t really get with grocery store herbs, especially now during the pandemic when the selection might be more limited.”

One of Tidd’s favourite pairings is pizza with mojitos. “Topping pizzas with fresh basil, tomatoes and then adding some additional toppings like wasabi arugula creates such a flavour bouquet,” says Tidd. “Then by adding one of the many varieties of fresh mint to your mojito, you can have a classic beverage with your own signature.”

Another of Tidd’s favourites is Caprese salads, which use fresh tomatoes — and not necessarily the red variety. “You can grow tomatoes in many different colours like yellow, purple and black, and that makes a great visual presentation when contrasted with the bright green fresh basil and white cheese.”

With so much potential for creativity, cooking at home doesn’t have to be a chore. “It can be a fun, exploratory way to try new things and create something that’s truly yours, especially when you grow the food yourself.”

While we may have to wait a bit longer before sharing our culinary creations at social gatherings, what better way to herald the end of a pandemic than with a signature dish or two using your own, home-grown ingredients?

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