Meals for the homeless
I met J at the homeless feed. He was a regular volunteer. He loves to help out at the weekly street buffet. A warm and witty man, J was a lawyer at a major bank before he became a rough sleeper. Newly settled in social housing, J cooks delicious desserts and muffins for his friends on the streets.
‘That was my sleeping spot,’ J pointed to a corner next to a shop front.
‘My first night on the street,’ J smiled, ‘Hunter gave me her bedding. She slept on the concrete floor that night.‘
‘For many years I had felt that I didn’t fit in, even though I had everything I needed, until the guys here accepted me unconditionally.’
‘Guys here, so many of them are willing to pull their shirts off their backs and offer it to you.’
‘Many think homeless people are drug addicts, alcoholics or have mental illnesses. I don’t smoke or drink. A car accident and circumstances put me on the streets among these guys.’ J said humbly.
Inspired by the story, I made a delicious ice tea to bring smiles and cheerfulness.
Perfect for the hot summer days – chilled lychee flavored Chinese tea, with lychee fruit, pineapple, cranberry, orange, lime, honey and mint. They loved it so much, they asked for it the next week, and the week after. I have been making it for weeks.
With that, I wish for a simple world of kindness and acceptance for all souls, especially those quirky one.
A nearby butcher sells chicken drumstick fillets at an unbelievable price. This is gold – I reckon the drumstick is the best part of a poultry – juicy, tender and full of flavors.
This week, I made some Indian spiced chicken drumstick fillets for our homies.
So easy, with 3-4 simple steps:
- Cut the chicken drumstick fillets into chunky pieces
- Marinate the meat with garlic and ginger paste, natural yogurt, cumin, turmeric, chili powder, garam masala, mustard oil, sesame oil, salt, and black pepper
- Pan fry in small batches with a little cooking oil
- Optional garnish – sliced fresh mint, fresh chili and toasted sesame seeds.
Tasted pretty good.
Winter is finally here, and it rained most days last week. This means it was very uncomfortable for our rough sleepers, with many of them having to seek shelter at temporary accommodation. However, I was assured that they would not miss our homemade hot meals on Saturday night. So I made an extra effort to provide them with some nice food – apricot chicken, prawn and chorizo pilau, and chicken siumai dumplings.
Although time consuming, chicken siumai dumplings are very easy to make. My simplest version has only a few key ingredients – wonton wrappers, chicken mince, chicken bouillon powder, salt and white pepper, and cooking oil for pan frying.
I first made the meat filling, then the dumplings. I steamed the dumplings, following by pan-frying the dumplings slightly, so they won’t stick during transit to the homeless feed.
The easy method is illustrated as follows:
Meals for the homeless: stir fry pork with soy sauce, lemon juice, tomato sauce, port wine, turmeric and cumin (gluten free option)
Pork shoulders are cheap this week – $6 a kilo at the supermarket, perfect for a tasty budget meal for our homeless friends.
I bought two pork shoulders, which gave me about 3kg of good quality meat after I trimmed off the fat and skin. I marinated the pork slices with dark soy sauce^, light soy sauce^, lemon juice, tomato sauce, brown sugar, port wine, turmeric, cumin and white pepper. I also added a cup of corn flour. I mixed the ingredients well, and left the pork in the fridge overnight, covered.
The next day I pan fried the pork in small batches, using a generous amount of cooking oil. I used the highest temperature possible, so I could achieve an intense ‘dry fry’ texture and taste. After I finished cooking the pork, I added some saute capsicum slices and saute green shallot (scallion) for colors.
It tasted delicious. I hope our homeless friends enjoyed the dish.
^use a gluten free soy sauce for a GF option.
Fried noodles is one of those ‘as you please’ dishes and you can add whatever ingredients you like. For the weekly homeless feed, I like to compliment main dishes with a simple noodle dish. Every week I change the ingredients to please our friends’ taste buds.
This week I made a noodle stir fry with bacon, leek and carrot.
Method is as follows:
Meals for the homeless – sweet Potato Noodles with Chinese mushroom and vegetables (gluten free option, vegan)
I first enjoyed potato noodles in 1990s. I was puzzled by its rich flavors and unusual texture – soft, firm and bouncy. Not until many years later I realized these wonderful noodles were actually made of sweet potato starch, not potato.
I love these noodles – easy and cheap to make, yet so versatile you can add anything to it and the noodles will soak up all the beautiful flavors.
Last Saturday I made a huge batch of noodles. We served it slightly chilled as part of a street banquet. I hope our friends enjoyed the noodles as much as I did.
Recipe is as follow: Read the rest of this entry »
Meals for the homeless – chicken and apricot terrine, with ham fat, raisin, strawberry jam, thyme and bay leaf
Last Saturday my 10 year old boy bought a ham for the homeless feed out of his own pocket money. He and his dad sliced up the ham and left a pile of ham fat behind.
This Saturday was the Christmas dinner for our homeless friends. So I made this colorful chicken terrine with left over ham fat. I also added apricot, raisin, saute onion, corn kennel, cumin powder, cinnamon powder, thyme, bay leaf, strawberry jam, salt and black pepper.
Looks and tasted great, and so easy and cheap to make.