Hello! My name is Haley and I am a Team Leader at the Campus Food Bank on the Awareness Committee. This week, some of my committee members and I will be cooking and eating from CFB hampers.  My goal is to come up with tasty, healthy and creative meals that are easy for clients to prepare using their hampers. Our committee hopes that our experiences and ideas can help clients make the best of their hampers!

Without further delay, pictured below are the contents of my 2 person hamper.These hampers are designed to last 4-5 days and this hamper will be feeding both me and my boyfriend for the school week. When doing this project our committee strived to ensure that the hamper was reflective of a usual hamper. We followed the same template used for clients and chose items that are usually available in the office. We selected perishable items that are commonly supplied to the CFB, as these items can vary significantly week to week.

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Non-Perishable Items

 

 At first glance, it seems like a lot of food for 4  days. I’m currently hoping that the hamper has the potential to last even longer than that, depending on the person. The total hamper contents cost $64.21.

As a committee, we set out rules for the project. Spices and cooking sauces that have been previously purchased can be used when preparing meals. These items can often be found on our Help Yourself shelf and clients may even have these items left from previous grocery trips, as they do not need to be purchased often. I will try to keep extra non-hamper ingredients to a minimum and will try to make suggestions for things that can be bought to best supplement a CFB hamper.

Let’s get started!

Perishable Items

Perishable Items

Breakfast:

For breakfast I used the oats from my hamper. My hamper contained instant oats and I prepared these with boiling water, adding a chopped apple on top. Hot milk can also be used to make the oats, if it is available. Hampers also often contain plain oats(rather than instant) that can be prepared just as easily following the instructions in your hamper. Some people find plain oats bland but adding fresh or canned fruit (think peaches, apples, bananas or anything you like!) on top can help make the oats tasty. Cinnamon and brown sugar are also delicious additions to an easy hamper breakfast like this one.

Breakfast

Breakfast: Oats & Apples

 

Lunch:

Lunch consisted of a “Chickpea Salad Sandwich” (recipe below), carrot sticks and a granola bar. The sandwich recipe below can be made using canned fish but our hamper is vegetarian so extra legumes are given. The chickpeas make a great tuna substitute if you dislike tuna, have dietary restrictions or have run out of tuna. This sandwich is surprisingly tasty!

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Lunch: Chickpea Salad Sandwich

 

Chickpea Salad Sandwich:

**VEGETARIAN, GLUTEN FREE OPTION, VEGAN OPTION

¼ cup chickpeas

1 tbsp mayonnaise or vegan mayonnaise

Salt and pepper

2 slices of bread  or 1 bun (gluten free or regular)

Other toppings (cheese, lettuce, tomato) *optional

Mash chickpeas with a fork until they are slightly smashed with some chunks still existing.     Add mayonnaise, salt, pepper and mix. Spread the mixture onto the bread or bun. Top with optional vegetables such as lettuce, spinach or tomato. Cheese is also a tasty edition.

 

Afternoon Snack:

For a snack I had some delicious canned pears and Greek yogurt that were given to me in my hamper.  Fruit and yogurt are very tasty together and are items usually found in a hamper.

Dinner:

For supper I made Mexican Stuffed Peppers. They were very quick to prepare and tasted very good. These peppers are great because they can easily be altered according to what ingredients are available and will still taste great. No black beans? Use kidney beans or lentils. No corn? Use whatever vegetables you have that you like. The peppers can be flavoured using any spices you have and enjoy. Here’s the recipe for peppers!

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Dinner: Mexican Stuffed Peppers

Mexican Stuffed Peppers

**VEGTARIAN, GLUTEN FREE, VEGAN OPTION

1 cup cooked rice (cook it now or use leftover rice)

½ can black beans, drained and rinsed

½ can corn, drained

½ cup tomato sauce or salsa

1 ½ tsp chili powder

¼ tsp cumin

2 bell peppers(any colour)

Shredded cheese

Mix first 6 ingredients together in a bowl. Cut peppers in half and scoop out the seeds. Spoon rice filling into peppers. Sprinkle cheese on top and bake for 30 minutes at 400 degrees F. Omit cheese if you are a vegan.

 

 

So far the day went well. I had enough food and everything I made was tasty. I am trying to plan some interesting things to make with the hamper for tomorrow and think I have some fun ideas! Stay tuned 🙂

 

-Haley