As head of Montreal-headquartered CDS Foods, Cesare Della Santina oversees the import and distribution of fresh fruits and vegetable sourced from three continents. Cesare Della Santina’s company imports a wide range of products, from garlic to dragon fruit. Among the staple products handled are shallots, a member of the allium family, which also includes onions.
Sweet and mild, shallots lack the bite associated with raw onions, while imparting a subtle hint of garlic. They are ideal for dishes such as salads, where they are eaten raw and impart an onion flavor without the lasting pungency. One popular recipe is a vinaigrette that combines finely chopped shallots with apple cider vinegar, olive oil, and Dijon mustard. Shallots are also a perfect complement to hardy vegetable dishes such as roasted brussel sprouts.
A rule of thumb for shoppers is that two shallots are the equivalent of half of a large grocery store onion, and three shallots handily take the place of a smaller onion.
Poi Traditional Hawaiian Taro Root Dish
As head of CDS Foods in Montreal, Cesare Della Santina guides a company that sources quality products, including ginger and garlic, from around the world. Cesare Della Santina’s firm also imports a number of tropical specialty products, including dragon fruit, Asian pears, and taro root. Traditional to the Polynesian islands, taro maintains an integral role in the Hawaiian diet.
One of the early Hawaiian staples, poi is created by steaming the nutritious, starchy tuber and pounding it with wooden boards and stones. This crushing process is called poi via ku’I, and the end result is a purple-colored dish that resembles bread dough and has a mildly sweet flavor. Additional flavor can be obtained through a natural fermentation process over a couple days, which adds sourness.
For many decades, taro agriculture in Hawaii was in decline, as sugar plantations replaced traditional fields and less-nutritious potatoes took taro’s place. In recent years, awareness of the importance of taro, both as a source of nutrition and as a cultural ingredient, has come to the fore, and poi is again a common sight on many Hawaiian dinner tables.
Cesare Della Santina is a respected Montreal business owner who leads the fresh produce importer CDS Foods and sources fruits and vegetable from throughout Asia, North and South America, and Europe. Cesare Della Santina has expanded his company’s range of products throughout the years to include peeled garlic, taro, Asian pears, and ya pears.
Also known as the Tientsin and Chinese white pear, the ya pear is common in China’s Hebei province and has a similar pale golden color to that of the Japanese Pear. Unlike its rounder cousin, its shape most resembles the European pear.
Ya pears have a thin skin and a crisp texture and are commonly described as tasting like a combination of apple and pear. Made up of 90 percent water, ya pears feature a light, refreshing taste and provide a healthy amount of antioxidants such as copper and vitamin C. Like most pears, ya pears ripen from the inside and thus improve in taste and texture after picking. This gives them a lengthy shelf life and makes them ideal for shoppers who purchase fruits on a weekly basis. The high water content does mean that they are best eaten raw and are not usually recommended for pies or tarts.
An expert in produce imports, Cesare Della Santina founded CDS Foods, formerly CDS Brokers, in 2000. Cesare Della Santina ensures ongoing success by partnering with companies, like Groupe Lavigne, to periodically retrain staff.
To enhance productivity and reduce human error, retraining employees can be advantageous. It is effective when introducing new processes to operations and helps companies stay competitive within their markets. Programs should further educate employees about advanced production, sales, and management methods for improving output and therefore, customer satisfaction.
In terms of recruitment, companies must be careful not to focus solely on retraining internal staff. This creates a barrier for innovation and modernization that comes from hiring external professionals. For a good balance, human resources teams can maintain a stable and loyal workforce of veterans by implementing a retraining program for current workers. In addition, a training program should be established for new recruits to communicate processes and policies that help meet workforce demand.
Established in 2000, Montreal-based CDS Foods, under the helm of founder Cesare Dell Santina, is an importer of a variety of produce. Cesare Della Santina has since expanded the business’ imports to include popular spices and herbs, such as ginger.
Ginger is usable in many forms, whether powdered, dried, or fresh in its natural state. Many cooks use it as a garnish or as a spice paste. A longtime staple of Asian and Caribbean cooking due to its deep, rich flavor, ginger can also enhance Western dishes such as crème brulee. It is best used plentifully.
Ginger is also lauded for its health benefits. It has gained a reputation as a useful remedy for gastrointestinal issues; it is both a carminative and a spasmolytic, meaning it can eliminate flatulence and intestinal upset, respectively. It has been shown to be effective in treating vomiting and nausea in pregnant women and those suffering from motion sickness. Persons with rheumatoid arthritis and osteoarthritis may benefit from its effect on sore joints, as research shows that its acts directly on inflammations. Additionally, placing sliced root ginger in boiling water makes a concoction that warms the lungs and throat, relieving flu, colds, and coughs.
For the last 15 years, Cesare Della Santina has overseen import and export operations as president of produce company CDS Foods, Inc. Outside of his professional responsibilities, Cesare Della Santina enjoys traveling around the globe, particularly to churches in various countries such as Germany.
Towering above the city skyline, the Cologne Cathedral (also known as the Kolner Dom) stands at 157.38 meters tall. Its 8,000-square-meter interior can accommodate over 20,000 people and houses several religious relics and works of art, including the Gero Cross, Jeweled Madonna, and the Chapel of the Virgin.
The Gothic-style cathedral has served as a gathering place for Christian worshipers for more than 2,000 years. Located on the site of an ancient Roman temple, the Old Cathedral was built in 818 and contained altars for St. Peter and Maria. The cathedral later became a well-known destination for religious pilgrimages in 1164 when Archbishop Rainald von Dassel brought the remains of the Three Magi to the site.
After burning down in the 13th century, the Cologne Cathedral was rebuilt across the span of over 600 years. Until the early 1800s, the cathedral featured only one section, which included the consecrated choir. Germany’s Romantic Era inspired the Prussian Court and Cologne citizens to resume heavy construction following the original medieval building plans. In 1880, builders completed the Cologne Cathedral in its entirety.
The founder and president of Montreal-based CDS Foods, Cesare Della Santina has over 25 years of experience in the importing industry. When he isn’t traveling for business, Cesare Della Santina enjoys traveling to experience different cultures and pursues activities such as visiting historic churches.
Europe is home to some of the world’s most famous and revered churches. Located in Barcelona, Spain, the Sagrada Familia cathedral is a Roman Catholic church designed by renowned architect Antoni Gaudi. The cathedral has been under construction since 1882, and has yet to be finished. Its current completion date is expected in 2026. To the east of Spain, the Notre Dame Cathedral in Paris is a relic of French Gothic architecture, with intricate stained glass windows, high ceilings, and gargoyle sculptures.
Also built in the Gothic style, London’s Westminster Abbey is famous for not only its architecture, but also for the historic figures buried there. Many English monarchs, including Mary, Queen of Scots, and Queen Elizabeth I, rest in Westminster Abbey, along with famous writers such as Geoffrey Chaucer and Alfred Lord Tennyson.
Located southeast of the British Isles within the boundaries of Italy, Vatican City is home to both St. Peter’s Basilica and the Sistine Chapel. Architect and artist Michelangelo designed the dome for St. Peter’s Basilica, and his paintings depicting the book of Genesis adorn the walls and ceilings of the Sistine Chapel.