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Now that we know how to train like a firefighter, we’re ready to learn how to fuel ourselves like one, too.

Firefighting, for obvious reasons, can be extremely stressful, physically and mentally. Their shifts are similar to those of professional athletes, with one big difference: firefighters never know when the big “game” is going to happen. Emergencies can come at any moment and firefighter bodies go from zero to 100 in an instant, so they have to always be prepared.

The key to a firefighter’s diet is solid, balanced nutrition. It’s important to keep it simple.

Our favourite firefighter (and the author of Firehouse Chef), Patrick Mathieu, returned to The Social with easy but healthy recipes you can try at home.


Super Greens & Aged Cheddar Soup


  • 1 head broccoli
  • 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 cup diced onion
  • 1 cup diced celery
  • Kosher salt and fresh ground pepper
  • 2 tablespoons minced garlic 
  • 2 teaspoons fresh thyme leaves
  • 1 cup Brussel sprouts, halved
  • 1 cup packed spinach
  • 1 cup chopped packed kale
  • 5 cups vegetable broth
  • 1 cup shredded old white cheddar
  • 2 teaspoons fresh grated lemon zest
  • Smokey pepitas for serving, recipe follows
  • Diced avocado, for serving


  1. Cut the broccoli florets from the stems and roughly chop the stems into 1/2-inch pieces.
  2. Heat the olive oil in a large soup pot over medium-high. Add the onion, celery, and broccoli stems.  Lower the heat to medium, and season with salt and pepper. Cook the vegetables slowly until tender, about 10 minutes. Add the garlic and cook for a few minutes longer.
  3. Add the thyme with the broccoli florets, Brussel sprouts, spinach, kale, stock and bring to a boil.  Reduce heat to a simmer and cook uncovered for about 15 minutes until all the vegetables are very tender.
  4. Puree the soup with a hand blender until smooth.  Add the aged cheddar a handful at a time stirring constantly to incorporate it.  Add the lemon zest and adjust seasoning if necessary.  Serve garnished with smokey pepitas and diced avcado. Enjoy!

Smokey Pepitas


  • 1 cup pepitas (or 2 cups sunflower seeds)
  • 1 tablespoon avocado oil
  • 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon cumin
  • 3/4 teaspoon smoked paprika


  1. Preheat your oven to 350 degrees.
  2. Place the pepitas into a bowl with the oil and spices and then toss to coat. Spread the coated pepitas onto a baking sheet and then place in the oven for 6-7 minutes until toasted. Allow to cool completely and store in an airtight container until ready to use.

Grilled Swordfish with Blood Orange Quinoa Salad


For the salad:

  • 3 blood oranges
  • 8 thin slices fresh ginger
  • 1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil
  • 3/4 cup quinoa
  • 1 1/2 cups vegetable stock
  • 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt, plus additional for seasoning
  • 1 tablespoon white wine vinegar
  • 2 teaspoons honey
  • 1 small jalapeno, minced (with seeds for maximum heat if preferred)
  • 2 green onions (both white and green parts), minced
  • 1 shallot, minced
  • ½ cup black beans, rinsed
  • 2 tablespoons chopped fresh cilantro leaves
  • Freshly ground black pepper

For the fish:

  • 2 pounds skinless swordfish cut into 2-inch cubes
  • Steel skewers


  1. Peel two of the blood oranges reserving the peel and segments separately.  Warm the blood orange peels, ginger, and olive oil in a small saucepan over medium heat. As soon as the oil starts to bubble, after about 2 minutes, remove from heat. Set the oil aside to steep while you prepare the rest of the dish. Strain and reserve the oil.
  2. Meanwhile, rinse the quinoa in a bowl and drain. Put the quinoa in a small saucepan with the vegetable stock and 1/2 teaspoon salt. Bring to a boil over high heat, and then reduce heat to maintain a gentle simmer, cook uncovered for 15 minutes. Set aside off the heat, for 5 minutes. Transfer the quinoa to a bowl and fluff with a fork. 
  3. Juice the third blood orange over a bowl, there should be roughly about 2 tablespoons. Whisk the orange juice with the vinegar, honey, and salt to taste in a medium bowl. Gradually whisk in 3 tablespoons of the reserved blood orange oil then season with pepper to taste.  
  4. Toss quinoa with the dressing, jalapeno, green onions, shallots, black beans, and cilantro. Slice the reserved blood orange segments in half and add them to the salad.  Adjust seasoning with salt and pepper to taste.
  5. For the swordfish, preheat a grill to high heat. Thread the swordfish cubes onto the metal skewers. Season the skewers with salt and pepper and brush with some of the blood orange oil.  Grill the skewers, turning as each side browns but the fish is still moist, basting with the orange oil, about 3 minutes per side.  Place swordfish skewers on top of quinoa salad and enjoy!

Thai Chopped Salad with Curry Coconut Dressing


For the Chicken Satay

  • ½ cup coconut milk
  • 3 tablespoons chopped lemongrass
  • 2 tablespoons coconut oil
  • 2-6 chopped Thai chilies, (depending on how hot you like it!)
  • 1 tablespoon chopped galangal or ginger
  • 1 tablespoon chopped garlic
  • 1 tablespoon dark brown sugar
  • 1 tablespoon green curry paste
  • 1 teaspoon ground coriander
  • 1 teaspoon ground turmeric
  • 1 teaspoon fish sauce
  • 2 limes, cut in half
  • 12 boneless skinless chicken thighs
  • Wooden skewers, soaked

For the Curry Coconut Dressing:

  • 1 cup coconut milk
  • 3 tablespoons all natural peanut butter
  • 3 tablespoons fresh lime juice
  • 1 tablespoon yellow or green curry paste
  • 1 tablespoon fish sauce
  • 1 tablespoon sambal olek, or other chili garlic sauce
  • Pinch kosher salt

For the salad:

  • 2 cups shredded white cabbage
  • 1 cup shredded green papaya
  • 1 carrot, shredded
  • 1 mango, peeled and chopped
  • 1 red pepper, sliced
  • 1 avocado, sliced
  • 4 green onion, chopped
  • 1 cup bean sprouts
  • 2/3 cup roasted unsalted cashews
  • Fresh cilantro for serving
  • Toasted sesame seeds for garnish
  • Lime slices, for garnish


  1. To prepare the Satay puree the coconut milk, lemongrass, oil, chilies, galangal, sugar, garlic, spices, curry paste and fish sauce in a food processor. Toss paste and chicken in a sealable bag and marinate for at least 30 minutes and up to 4 hours. 
  2. Set a grill over medium high heat. Thread a couple chicken thighs on each skewer, brush with a little vegetable oil and grill turning once until charred and cooked through, about 7 minutes total.  Remove from the grill and squeeze fresh lime juice all over satays.  Set aside
  3. To prepare the dressing add all ingredients for the dressing to a blender and blend until smooth. Refrigerate the dressing until it thickens slightly, about 2 hours.
  4. To prepare the Thai Salad add the cabbage, green papaya and carrot to a large bowl. Toss with about 1/3 of the dressing until just moistened. Plate the cabbage mixture and top with all of the remaining salad components and drizzle each with the Curry Coconut Dressing. Serve with fresh chopped cilantro, toasted sesame seeds lime slices and a Chicken Satay. Enjoy!

Sous Vide Carne Asada and Grilled Veggies with Chimichurri Sauce


For the steak:

  • 3 bulbs roughly chopped garlic 
  • 3/4 cup freshly squeezed lime juice (about 8 large limes)
  • ¼ cup fresh squeezed orange juice 
  • 1/4 cup clear tequila 
  • 1/4 cup soy sauce 
  • 1 bunch roughly chopped fresh cilantro, leaves and stems 
  • 1 jalapeno pepper, seeded and diced 
  • 1 teaspoon cumin powder 
  • 1 tablespoon freshly cracked black pepper and kosher salt
  • 1 Ziploc sealable bag
  • 1 1/2 to 2 flank steak 
  • 1 tablespoon butter

For the veggies:

  • 1/4 cup plus 2 tablespoons grape seed oil
  • 3 red bell peppers, seeded and halved
  • 3 sweet potatoes (about 1 pound total), sliced lengthwise into 1/4-inch-thick rounds
  • 3 zucchini, sliced lengthwise into 1/2-inch-thick rectangles
  • 12 cremini mushrooms
  • 1 bunch asparagus, trimmed
  • 12 green onions, roots cut off
  • 12 small tomatoes
  • Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 cup boccacini cheese
  • Chimichurri Sauce for serving, recipe follows


  1. Combine the garlic, lime juice, tequila, soy sauce, cilantro, jalapeno, cumin, black pepper and salt in a re-sealable plastic bag.  Add the steak and let marinate at room temperature for 30 to 45 minutes.
  2. Set your sous vide precision cooker to 131ºF.
  3. Using the water immersion method place the flank steak into the heated bath and set the timer for 90 minutes. When the ninety minutes is up, remove the steak from the bath and pat dry with paper towel. Season with salt and pepper and using a cast iron pan brushed with 1 tablespoon of avocado oil sear the flank steak over very high heat for about a minute or two per side. Add the butter and baste the steak in the last few seconds of cooking. Remove the steak from the pan and allow to rest while you grill your veggies.
  4. Heat your grill over high heat. Brush the vegetables with 1/4 cup of the oil to coat lightly. Sprinkle the vegetables liberally with salt and pepper. Working in batches, grill the vegetables until tender and lightly charred all over, starting with the sweet potatoes for about 8-10 minutes; 7 minutes for the peppers, zucchini, and mushrooms; 4 minutes for the asparagus, green onions and tomatoes. The key to getting those great grill marks is to not shift the vegetables too frequently once they've been placed on the hot grill.  To plate place vegetables on a large platter, slice the steak across the grain and lay on top of the vegetables. Scatter boccacini cheese around the vegetables and steak.  Drizzle the entire platter with Chimichurri sauce and enjoy!

StationHouse Chimichurri Sauce


  • 1 cup lightly packed parsley
  • ½ cup lightly packed cilantro  
  • 3 to 5 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1 teaspoon freshly ground pepper
  • 1 teaspoon chili pepper flakes
  • 2 tablespoons fresh oregano leaves
  • 2 tablespoons green onion, white and green part minced
  • 3/4 cup grape seed oil
  • 3 tablespoons sherry wine vinegar
  • 3 tablespoons lemon juice


  1. Place all chimichurri sauce ingredients in a food processor and pulse until well chopped, but not pureed. Taste and adjust seasoning if necessary. Place in a glass screw top Mason jar and use on everything!