Did you know that the plural form of a cactus is either cacti OR cactuses? You feel like a smarty pants saying cacti, when really, either is smart. You’ve been bamboozled. Look it up! The family and I spend many dinner conversations looking up answers to questions.
I can’t even begin to express how much fun Project Humble was for me. I really enjoyed spending time with my eldest without sweet little sister hanging on. Based on her view of me with sprouting horns and flared nostrils, she may feel differently, but I hope it’s something she never forgets.
If you don’t know what I’m talking about, you need to head over here and read:
Part 1– Why I Canceled my Teen’s Spring Break
Part 2– Girl’s Count
Part 3– “Wear” it Starts
Part 4– Farm to Families
Today, we worked with the same organization from Day 3, Second Harvest. Instead of working out on the farm, I thought I would take her directly to the headquarters to see the heart of the operation.
Photo Credit to Publixcharities.org
We started in the food bank area where food from various food drives is collected, sorted, boxed, and packaged onto crates. From there, it is shipped out to 46 counties throughout Tennessee.
Skylar and I were assigned to the box making area, where we put dozens of boxes together to hand out to those doing the packing.
After a short time, we were whisked away to the Culinary Arts Center to create some delicious food for a benefit dinner happening the following evening.
The Second Harvest Culinary Arts Center is a food-preparation facility that teaches cooking classes and safe cooking skills to those who need or want it. They also cater for benefit events for Second Harvest clients and supporters. If you have a hankerin’, you can even eat lunch with them on Wednesdays and Fridays in their Cafe’.
Our purpose in volunteering today was to help prepare a catered meal for one of their supporters who paid a pretty penny for the meal. As soon as we walked in, we donned an apron and a pair of washed hands and got to work.
Skylar was assigned to coleslaw duty while I got the more delicious job of helping to make the mango dessert (although I’m not sure how much she would have enjoyed hand whipping whipped cream for 15 minutes straight).
Executive Chef, Mark Rubin worked diligently with me, teaching me about proper egg white peaks and creating the perfect corn pudding tamales wrapped in corn husks. With one hand in a pot and another on a mixer, he periodically shouted at his sous chef, “Chef, come taste!” and shoveled out tasting spoons like a deck of cards to all who would be brave enough to partake in his creation. I have to say, I felt like I was Bobby Flaying it up in that kitchen.
Meanwhile, other volunteers were dicing cacti cactuses (why not just use both?), frying up plantains, and baking the most delicious chocolate cakes.
Chef Mark encouraged us to taste whatever we wanted, as long as we didn’t double dip and we made sure to wash our hands afterward.
Unfortunately, we couldn’t get many photos of our culinary art due to the requirement to maintain good hygiene. No sense in scaring off the supporters with crusty outdoor surprises in their mango soufflé.
Today was fun. I would have liked to see the meal all prepared and served to the clients, but it was great to learn some new things and be a part of something big:
Fighting Hunger and Feeding Hope
What are some things you can do in your local community to take your focus off yourself and onto someone else?