Dental Care and Herbalism at ClearHeart Botanicals

When you think of daily care for your gums and teeth, do you envision an herbalist? Not many of us do. Likely because few herbalists are focused on dental care. Certainly not here on Salt Spring Island. In fact, Saci Spindler is the only one. Her journey into dental care began when she noticed that her two-year-old son had dental decay. As an herbalist with a penchant for research and alchemy, Saci first examined his nutrition to see if she could find the cause. Then she created an antibacterial mouthwash concentrate that her son nicknamed “Fire Dragon” because of its tingling and stimulating effects. And the best part? The mouthwash proved effective, and at every dentist’s visit after that, her son was given a clean bill of health. Turning to herbs for answers was not something new for Saci. At age 15, after a childhood of being treated with antibiotics for illnesses, Saci walked into Self Heal Herbs in Victoria and found herbs that could support her condition. She ha…
Read more about Dental Care and Herbalism at ClearHeart Botanicals

Culturalive: Krauts, Kimchis and Salsas

If you’ve been to Mexico, your taste buds have likely never forgotten Mexican fare. And maybe from time to time, your taste buds coerce you into trying to recreate the unique Mexican flavour combinations in your kitchen. And, if you’re like me, sometimes you succeed and your taste buds flare with delight. Other times, they wither in scorn. But a zippy li’l salsa made here on Salt Spring Island recently revamped my―let’s be honest―dull version of huevos rancheros. I was buying the Culturalive’s mild kimchi, a staple in my house, at Country Grocer when I noticed Culturalive’s latest product, red pepper salsa. It had been a long time since I had eaten Mexican, and my taste buds encouraged me: “¡Orale!” In that jar, I found my ferment fortune. It is an extraordinary salsa that literally brings Mexican dishes to life. The chipotle smokiness and the peppery sweetness interact like mariachi music and zapateado dance, and the coriander and cumin add flavour intensity. The f…
Read more about Culturalive: Krauts, Kimchis and Salsas

Country Grocer’s Fall Harvest Sale

Fall is definitely here, but next week, Country Grocer is springing to life! For all of those who like to cash in on a great deal or who love to squirrel away a winter’s worth of food, your week is coming up. Country Grocer is offering a full week ― October 2nd to 9th ― of big savings. What squirrel wouldn’t appreciate a helping hand bringing in the seeds and nuts? And if indeed you are a squirrel and fond of seeds and nuts, you’ll savour the whopping deals on bulk pecan halves, organic mixed nuts, organic raw cashews, pumpkin and sunflower seeds, and packaged almonds. If you shop for organics, you’ll find astounding deals on maple syrup, soups and broths, dark chocolate, yogurt, popcorn, quinoa, broccoli, olive oil, and more! If you’re a seafood fan, you can stock up on canned wild albacore, Alaskan pink salmon, wild chunk light tuna, sockeye salmon, and sardines. Love your sweets? Try Salt Spring Island’s Pumpkin Pie Ice Cream! It’s over-the-moon delicious. Or …
Read more about Country Grocer’s Fall Harvest Sale

Video: Salt Spring's 'Green' Offers Zero Waste Shopping Experience

At the beginning, people told Crystal Lehky that she couldn’t make a zero waste grocery store work and that it would never open. But green—her zero waste, low impact grocery store—is open. That says a lot about Salt Spring islanders. These supporters are on the leading edge of solving a world issue with consumer- and retail-led change. And many of those same people were on the cutting edge of the organic movement 20 years ago. Change begins somewhere. But the supply chain isn’t as ready. Ninety percent of Crystal’s calls end with suppliers saying, “What, are you nuts? Why would I change the way I do things?” Since green opened as Canada’s first zero waste grocery store in June 2016, another store opened in Montreal, and another is opening in Vancouver this fall. But Europe has been doing this for 10 years. Some call it a trend; others say it is the future. And many say it’s long overdue. In 2013, the Great Pacific Garbage Patch, a floating landfill that destroys mar…
Read more about Video: Salt Spring's 'Green' Offers Zero Waste Shopping Experience

Local Business Profile: Salt Spring Ice Cream

Salt Spring Ice Cream - Some of the Best You’ll Ever Eat - When my grandpa taught me the “I scream, you scream, we all scream for ice cream” chant, I thought that I’d never scream for ice cream. I hadn’t yet met an ice cream that could arouse those passions. But, decades later, I’ve finally found that ice cream―right here on Salt Spring Island! In May, County Grocer started selling Salt Spring Ice Cream. Unless you go for scoops, you may not have known this. I didn’t find it until Country Grocer filled a front-row freezer with pint-sized jars and hung a sign over it with Salt Spring Ice Cream’s logo. I tried Salted Caramel, Cinnamon Toast, and Chocolate Espresso. Each flavour electrified my palate! Some ice cream crackerjack on this island has captured mouthful after mouthful of “fresh and real,” but who? I tracked Lesley and her daughter to their table at the Saturday market. Admittedly, I had walked by her table numerous times over the years because I had stopped eat…
Read more about Local Business Profile: Salt Spring Ice Cream

Local Business Profile: Fun Facts about Salt Spring Air

Salt Spring Air may have its wing in the air, but its roots are firmly planted here on Salt Spring as the island’s only airline. A dozen islanders keep local operations running smoothly, and three types of aircraft―Beaver, Turbo Beaver, and Turbo Otter―call Ganges Harbour home. Like many local businesses, Salt Spring Air has its public persona and its behind-the-scenes stories and delights. Here is an interesting blend of both: Speaking of local, those delectable muffins from Jana’s Bake Shop and that perfectly roasted coffee from Salt Spring Coffee are served to all passengers when they arrive for their flight. As islanders, many of us know what this time of year means for ferry lineups and waits. Doesn’t 22 minutes to YVR and 28 minutes to downtown Vancouver sound like a dream? It’s true! You can fly to either location in under half an hour! Can you imagine proposing on a rugged, beautiful beach? Because Salt Spring Air flies float planes, it can take passengers in…
Read more about Local Business Profile: Fun Facts about Salt Spring Air