Follow fun updates as well as interesting stories about clients, volunteers and supporters of SFBFS

April 14, 2010

Cooking Recipes from a Bridge Builder

We just love getting new recipes! As our mobile food distribution continues to feature cooking demonstrations and a plethora of recipes at more sites every month, we are always happy to get new recipes. Recipes and a host of cookbook are kept in our VISTA offices, where Courtney and I use them as raw material for health and nutrition education at mobile food distributions. The following great recipe for cornbread and cheddar casserole was given to us by Pat McManus, a Bridge Builder volunteer here at SFBFS. We are always happy to receive recipes, cookbooks, and health and nutrition-related materials from volunteers and donors.

Cornbread and cheddar casserole

Heat over to 425 degrees

2T butter

2 eggs

2T milk

2 cans creamed style corn

Grated onion if you like

Cornmeal muffin mix-15oz. package (note, I used 2 8oz boxes when I couldn't find a 15oz. package)

4oz. cheddar cheese (sharp or extra sharp is best)

1/2 pt. sour cream

Grated cheese for topping- I bought a package of shredded and used 4 handfuls-certainly you could use more if you wish but be sure to spead evenly. Be sure it is sharp or extra sharp.

Melt butter in oven n 9x13 casserole dish. Swirl casserole to coat bottom of pan entirely.

Whisk eggs and milk together. Stir in creamed corn, onion and muffin mix. Cut up the 4oz. of cheddar into small pieces and stir into batter. Pour batter into casserole and spread evenly. Drop spoonfuls of sour cream over top and spread to cover. Distribute the grated cheese evenly over the batter.

Bake for 35 minutes or until puffed and golden. Can be refrigerated overnight- Needs to be reheated for 15 minutes at 350 degrees


April 6, 2010

Thursdays at Women’s Wisdom Art, By Clio Muir

By Clio Muir
February 21, 2010

Little did I know when I attended an orientation for volunteers at Sacramento Food Bank & Family Services, I would find myself one year later totally immersed in the Women’s Wisdom Art program. Originally, I thought I would volunteer my time, having found myself with some extra, and donate to a good cause by assisting in the art program; setting out paints, digging out canvases, helping organize the art shows, getting the breakfast together, serving the lunch of the day; just helping with a few things needed during a day spent with Women’s Wisdom Art.

My how things have changed! Now, I would never miss my volunteering Thursdays, where:

* I can’t wait to see what L.T. is going to do with her latest multi-media collage of combining ceramics leaves with a fabric and stick mask turning the whole enterprise into an inspired woodland creature.

* I’m dying to see N.R.’s next dreamy perspective of a faraway landscape by painting gradations of watercolor.

* Or the one-thousandth heart inspired piece done in all forms and mediums by L.A.

* And always no matter the project or assignment, how somewhere, someplace, a rich colorful, cascading waterfall will appear in L.’s work.

I could go on and on describing the art, but the inspiration and the thoughtfulness of the each person’s contribution has to be experienced.

This is what the program means to me: anticipating the fun, the joy and the process by which art is created, and the time spent with these lovely women. I can only imagine for the ladies who come every week from a variety of places and different circumstances, I can only imagine what it means for them…and I didn’t even get started with the glitter, or the conversations and the shared recipes taking wings that seemingly fly through the room.

March Mobile Health and Nutrition Education

Our mobile food distributions currently serve individuals and families at 10 sites throughout the city each month. Not only do clients receive a 3-5 day supply of groceries, but also clients learn about community resources and health and nutrition. This March, we focused our health and nutrition education on healthy fats and oils, teaching clients about how to include healthy fats into our diets and how to read nutrition labels in order to look out for harmful trans fats.

Do you know the four different kinds of fats: monounsaturated, polyunsaturated, saturated and trans? Clients at this month’s mobile food distributions had the opportunity to learn to recognize these different fats by reading the nutrition label on several food products like olive oil, almonds, mayonnaise, yogurt, coconut oil, vegetable shortening and Ritz crackers, for example. Special attention was paid to recognizing trans fats in the nutrition label by checking the ingredient list for partially hydrogenated vegetable oils. The USDA recommends we have no trans fats in our diets. These harmful, man-made fats can never be fully broken down in our bodies. Furthermore they raise the levels of bad cholesterol (LDL) and other bad blood lipids while lowering levels of HDL cholesterol (good cholesterol), clogging the arteries and making them inflexible thereby potentially leading to heart attack, heart disease and stroke. By learning to read nutrition labels and guard against trans fats, clients are empowered to make conscious food choices and prevent diet-related diseases.

Children attending mobile food distributions this month had the opportunity to sample 5 different varieties of nuts. Nuts, they learned, are great for your brain and your heart- they have healthy fats and proteins to make you grow big and strong. Children and adults learned that natural fats are actually good for you. Children received a “Go Nuts” coloring book with images of all the nuts they had sampled and short descriptions of why they are good for you.

Finally, Mental Health America, the Sacramento Valley Pharmacist Association, and City Animal Shelter each joined SFBFS at a mobile distribution this month to offer their information and services to clients. We look forward to more partnerships with these and other area agencies at mobile distributions to come.