I am in the car on my way home from a trip to Cape Cod, Massachusetts where I visited my grandmother. My grandmother lives in an area where lots of people come to vacation over the summer and rent beautiful houses near the beach. We stayed in a vacation home too. We had a full kitchen which was great and we made breakfast and lunch every day. When we left on Friday, we tried to bring all of the leftover food that we could home, but we had to leave some food there, milk, eggs, bread, etc. We just didn’t have any room in our cooler.
My mom, dad and I started talking about home many people probably leave food in their vacation homes when they are done with their trip or just throw the food away. So much good food must go to waste. Imagine what could be done with all that food. I know when people are on vacation they are most likely not thinking about the homeless and hungry. But what if they did? What if at the end of our vacations in those beautiful beach homes we all came together and found a way to donate that extra food to local shelters and soup kitchen. Imagine the impact we could have on the communities we vacationed in. Right now it is just a thought but there must be a way to save that food and help people in need. Maybe before you rented a house you were asked to fill out a form asking if you have an extra food left that you would be willing to donate it to a soup kitchen. Volunteers could pick up the food and bring it to shelters and soup kitchens. Just a thought, but isn't that how everything starts.
Ms. Lisa is back!!!! For those of you who don’t know Ms. Lisa is my Master Gardener, my teacher, my mentor, sometimes my math tutor and my friend. We have missed her so much this summer! Yesterday I went to go visit her. The reason we have not been working together recently is because she just had a baby boy, Alexander, and he must be one of the luckiest boys on the planet because he has such an amazing mom. Ms. Lisa is so personable, genuinely nice and so much fun to be around. She is so excited to get back out into the gardens and get dirty again. We started planning for the fall gardens and they are going to be amazing! I can’t wait to get back out and start working with her again. We are excited to have her expertise back! We missed you Ms. Lisa & we can’t wait for Alexander to come help us plant!!!!
My friends at Bonnie Plants told me I had to try and grow their Ichiban Japanese Eggplant and they became a big part of my spring gardens. They are so cool. One plant can produce an amazing amount of vegetables. It is one of my new favorite vegetables to grow and eat. Here is a great recipe from my Grandpa Stagliano that my dad, my brother and I have fun cooking and even more fun eating!
What you will need- 3 pie plates- 1 large skillet, 1 plate covered with paper towels. 3 Ichiban Japanese Eggplant, Wondra, salt, pepper, onion powder, garlic powder, parmesan cheese, 2 eggs, milk, Italian Bread Crumbs, olive oil.
Peel Eggplant and cut into ¼ inch slices, lightly salt eggplant slices. Prepare the 3 pie plates as follows:
1st pie plate filled with ½ a cup of Wondra, salt, pepper, ½ teaspoon onion & garlic powder
2nd pie plate- 2 eggs, 1/3 cup of milk, 2 tablespoons of parmesan cheese
3rd Pie Plate- 1 and ½ cups of Italian Bread Crumbs
Dip each piece of eggplant in 1st pie plate and coat well, move eggplant piece to 2nd pie plate and coat well, move eggplant to 3rd pie plate and coat fully with breadcrumbs.
Heat oil olive in large skillet over medium heat. Drop coated eggplant in oil and cook about 3 minutes per-side (or until golden brown). Remove eggplant to paper towel coated plate. Be sure to eat while they are hot.
I like to dip the eggplant in a dipping sauce of ½ cup of sour cream, ½ cup of mayonnaise and dried herbs such as dill, scallions, etc. My Papa served this with a marinara sauce. It is delish! I hope you like it!
Not a fan of my eggplant!
Yesterday I met a Prince. He may not live in a castle (though not many of us do these days) but he is worth his weight in gold!
Mr. Prince and I met by accident. He was looking for the weather and he found me. Maybe it wasn’t an accident at all. I think we were meant to meet because we both want the same thing…to make sure there are no hungry people!
When Mr. Prince came across an article on-line in our local newspaper about a food drive I was holding (he was looking for the weather) he wrote the following comment:
"How we can we learn from such a child's action's?
I know of what it is not to be able to eat for day's as a Child and now as a disabled adult.I earn $10.00 too much for food stamp's. How ever I use a medical service dog and well.. he take's care of me. So I have to make sure he is healthy.I am cursed and blessed.There are no soup kitchen's out here in Cross or Monks Corner.Nothing.One my be blessed to obtain a small plastic bag of out dated worm infested food.I have became ill once on a bad can.We don't want to go there. The hospital bill was some thing else.When your hungry. That is that.I am blessed I have very fertile earth and over the 20 better year's installed irrigation.My fruit tree's are heavy and the vinyard will soon be full of quater sized grapes.The shame is I have all the tool's.Picking poles(Wire basket's with metal finger's).I'll contact this young lady's Mom and Dad.Maybe they can start a winter garden 60'x140' or just come and pick the fruit when it's ready.I can only eat so much and it's going to go to waste. How can we learn from her? Doing! Even I as desitite will be doing some thing. How about you? Roman Prince"
Yesterday I went to his house in Cross to pick those pears with my friends, dad & mom. His tree is loaded! We picked 223.6 pounds of pears and that is just the beginning (check back for the total number harvest from just one tree). There are still so many pears to harvest. As I promised I brought some food from my food drive & Mr. Prince is helping to get that food to his neighbors in Cross that do not have enough to eat. Thank you Mr. Prince, for giving. Thank you Mr. Prince for helping. Thank you Mr. Prince, together we can make a huge difference!
My food drives were a big success. With the help of the generous people of the lowcountry, I collected 535 pounds of food that will help feed people at Tri County Family Ministries, The Palmetto House, Homeless Veterans, and the people of Cross (I just learned that there is no soup kitchen or food bank in Cross). I am happy to say that 110 pounds of that was fresh vegetables! I want to thank everyone who donated even one can of food or an ear of corn. Your donations mean the hungry people in the Lowcountry will have something to eat. I want to personally thank Aura Lee's, Children's Orchard, The Summerville Y, my friends, Lydia, Kaeli, Marina, Chloe, Arrington and everyone who donated. I recieved beautiful watermelons and even a special gift from a nice lady to thank me! I couldn't do my project without everyone's help and support!