Every few months, we put down our cell phones, shut down our computers, and head into the community to do what we hope is some good. Enter Eden Food for Change, a local food bank in western Mississauga. Their mission is to increase access to good food, develop food skills to encourage healthy eating and empower the community through education, outreach and advocacy.
We could get behind their mission, as it closely mirrors ours: to create spaces that foster the integration of culture and commerce into vibrant places for diverse local entrepreneurs in the GTHA. We engage our local communities in the development, renovation, operation and maintenance of each property to advance community economic development. Both organizations want to better our communities.
This November, we all went to Eden Food for Change to prepare meals in their learning kitchen - a fully-equipped industrial kitchen run largely by community volunteers. Eden supplements their food donations with fresh ingredients purchased with cash donations and processes them into ready-to-eat meals for individuals who do not have access to kitchens or don't have the ability to cook. This provides clients of the food bank with another option to access good quality, healthy food in a dignified way.
Chef Peter guided us step-by-step on how to make pie crusts from scratch, a basic recipe requiring solid techniques and some finesse that can be applied to not only pie crusts but other pastry creations. Most of us didn't really know what we were doing. However, Chef Peter helped us avoid all the amateur mistakes like mixing the ingredients in the wrong order, overworking the dough or unevenly spreading the flour on the counter top. We were able to pump out over 120 pie crusts in the shape of cupcakes, ready to be filled with delicious fillings for meals during the holiday season. In between cooking pie crusts, we did food prep, namely chopping onions, over 60 of them in 15 minutes, that would be used to make other savoury recipes during the week.
The sheer number of meals that the staff at the Eden kitchen create each week needs a lot of community support to accomplish and we were honoured to donate our time and labour to this progressive organization and the initiatives they run. If you are looking to donate or volunteer at Eden Food for Change or want to find out more, click HERE.