Employee Profiles
and Recipes

Elena Gomez Haro Aceves


“I’m inspired daily by the expertise, passion, and hands-on problem-solving mindset of the chefs I work with. I value working for an institution that respects equality, diversity, and inclusion.”

Elena Gomez Haro Aceves

Elena has helped develop over 20 products from inception to market throughout her career, including corn-and-tortilla-based products for PepsiCo Mexico, and ice cream and frozen dessert products for Prairie West Ice Cream. 

She brings a powerful combination of skills and experience to Prairie Research Kitchen, including 15-plus years in innovation, research and development, quality assurance, and marketing in the academic, food, and plant science sectors. These ingredients make her especially effective at finding solutions for our clients and collaborating with our food research and development centre partners. She holds an MSc in Food Science from the University of Manitoba.

She chose this recipe for its warmth and simplicity, balanced flavour, and creamy texture. “The aroma is like a trip home or to a beautiful place,” she says. “Plus, this recipe was developed by a great student (Michael Luay) working with a great chef (Norm Pastorin), so it’s a fine example of what our skills can achieve for clients.”

FUN FACT: Elena recently became Canadian, and although she’s very proud of her Mexican origins, she embraces and loves her new country.

Roasted Carrot and
Ginger Soup with Chili Crisp

Source: Richardson Student-led Recipe Project


Chili crisp

6 clovesgarlic, peeled, thinly sliced
1 tbspginger, medium dice
small shallot, thinly sliced
1/2 cupcanola oil
1 tsp kosher salt
1/8 tspblack pepper, ground
1 tsp sugar
1 tspSichuan peppercorns, ground
star anise, whole
1 cupwhole dried chiles
1/4 tspcumin, ground

Roasted carrot and ginger soup

6medium carrots, peeled, medium dice
1/2 cupcanola oil, divided
4 tspkosher salt, divided
1 tspblack pepper, ground
medium onion, medium dice
1/3 cupginger, peeled, medium dice
8 cupsvegetable broth
1/2 cupheavy cream

Chili Crisp

  1. Place the whole dried chiles in a spice grinder and grind on high to obtain a coarse flake size, about 5 seconds.
  2. In a small pot, heat the oil to 350°F.
  3. Line two heat-proof plates with paper towels.
  4. Place the shallots in hot oil and fry until crispy and golden brown, about 45 seconds. (Be careful not to burn them.)
  5. Strain the shallots over a heatproof container, place the oil back into the pot, and transfer the shallots onto a paper-towel-lined plate.
  6. Repeat with the sliced garlic.
  7. Place the oil back into the small pot and heat to 350°F. While your oil is heating back up, combine all the spices and ginger in a heat-proof bowl and mix well.
  8. Once the oil is hot, pour it over the spice and ginger mix and mix carefully, as the oil is very hot.
  9. Cool the oil mixture. Add the fried shallots and fried garlic.

Roasted Carrot and Ginger Soup

  1. Preheat the oven to 400°F
  2. Place the carrots into a large bowl, toss with half the canola oil, half of the salt, and pepper to coat.
  3. Place the seasoned carrots onto a parchment-lined baking sheet.
  4. Roast the carrots for 30 minutes, mixing every 10 minutes.
  5. In a medium pot, heat the remaining oil over medium heat.
  6. Once the oil is hot, add the chopped onions and cook, stirring occasionally until they become translucent, about 1 minute.
  7. Add the vegetable broth and diced ginger and bring to a simmer for 10 minutes.
  8. Once the carrots have been roasted, add them to the simmering pot and simmer for another 20 minutes over low heat.
  9. Stir in the heavy cream and remaining salt.
  10. Transfer the hot soup to a blender, and blend on high until smooth for 2 minutes. Do this in multiple batches if the blender is too full.
  11. Transfer the soup back into the pot and bring to a low simmer.

Ladle 1 cup of the soup and garnish with 1 tbsp of chili crisp.

Chef’s Notes: Onions can be substituted for shallots. Substitute coconut milk for heavy cream to make this recipe vegan and dairy-free.