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Meet Mandy 👋

Mandi is the newest member of our Bear Country Kitchen Team.

Not only are we woman owned, independent Canadian store, we are a team of highly motivated, exceptionally skilled and talented women.

Mandi has been food motivated from an early age, learning to cook and bake alongside her family.

She founded a bakery in 2003 which kicked off a grand entrepreneurial adventure that included selling to Canadian grocery store chains and competing on the Food Network.

Mandi relocated to the West Kootenays from Ottawa in 2020 and thinks it is one of her best life choices.

She also manages the Kootenay Teen Chef Club program with the Trail and District Chamber of Commerce and Trail's Incredible Farmers Market.

Mandi has shared with us a favourite dish the Cucumber and Tomato Gazpacho that she was eating on hot nights in the summer.

It's a refreshing and chilled Spanish soup made from blended vegetables, with various seasonings like vinegar, spices, and lime juice.


  • 2 cucumbers, seeded (peel as well if preferred)
  • 1 cup cherry tomatoes, halved and seeded
  • 1 large can plain tomato juice
  • 3 green onions, diced (substitute 1/2 small red onion if desired)
  • 1 bell pepper, diced 
  • 1 tbsp red wine vinegar
  • 1 tbsp braggs or soy sauce
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1/2 tsp cumin
  • few twists fresh ground pepper
  • juice of 1 lime
  • chiffonade cilantro (optional)


  • Dice one of the seeded cucumbers and place in a large mixing bowl or storage container along with the tomatoes, red pepper, and green onions 
  • chop second cucumber into rough chunks
  • In a food processor, blend second cucumber and 1 cup tomato juice
  • Add blended mix, remaining tomato juice, red wine vinegar, soy sauce, salt, cumin, pepperto large bowl and mix well. cover and chill for at least 3 hours
  • To serve, divide into mason jars for picnic convenience or serve in margarita or martini glasses as a summer starter
  • Optional toppings: Chorizo, avocado, parmesan, basil, hot sauce, diced jalapeno peppers
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