Volunteering: Preparing dinner at the homeless shelter and cooking at home

Posted by on June 15, 2012 at 2:07 pm.

Later this afternoon, I’ll be going to the homeless shelter to help cook the dinner meal. It’s my first time making dinner at the shelter. I’m usually the one cooking breakfast, but I’m unable to do that this month.

While my nine-year old daughter was in school, she’d asked me several times if she could join me. She still at the age where she wants to follow mom everywhere, and she’s heard me talk about the volunteers, other guests, and the wonderful time I have when there, it’s natural that she’d want to experience it too, and today she will. She’s excited about the fact that she will be able to help cook a meal.

What did I prepare at home?

I prepared a vegetable pasta using my spiral vegetable slicer. Vegetable pasta, is something I was introduced to years ago, through one of the raw food websites I frequented. Perfect choice for someone who want’s a healthier meal, or someone that can’t tolerate gluten (such as myself.)

Occasionally I’ll marinate my raw vegetable pasta for a few hours before I serve it. Vegetable pasta is usually made with some type of squash, but I’ve used beets, carrots, and occasionally cucumbers too. I use this the traditional pasta, since it’s a healthier option, and the pasta resembles your traditional pasta. Today, I used zucchini and made “zucchini pasta.” 

I also made cheese steak for my daughter; of course, the one I prepared was a healthier option than what is usually purchased, but according to her it was still very tasty. No, she wasn’t just saying that, she’ll definitely tell me whether she doesn’t like something I’ve prepared.

I  coarsely chopped steak into a skillet. Once it was cooked, I drained off the fat, and added the steak back into the skillet. Some seasonings were added along with finely chopped zucchini pasta (it looked like shredded mozzarella), green onions, garlic,  and tomatoes, freshly picked from the garden.  I let those cook for a while, and then added provolone cheese.  Spinach leaves were added once it was loaded onto a crusty Italian roll.

Along with that, I made oven baked fries. I used four potatoes, cut them into potato wedges, added a mix of seasonings/herbs, and slid them into the oven. I had some of the pasta along with a delightful lentil dish I’d prepared yesterday. It tasted even better today.

Hopefully, I’ll be able to take a picture sometime this evening… before it all disappears.


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