Monday, May 25, 2009

Iron Chef East Hastings

There are weeks where Food Not Bombs can feel more like Iron Chef than anything else. We get a theme ingredient and a time limit and have to cook as many different dishes as possible.

This week's theme ingredient was most assuredly Asian pears. Sure we had the normal several boxes of tomatoes, but we always have those (except last week). And while we usually have pears too, this time we had two entire boxes full of them. How the hell were we going to use up all of those?

Thankfully we had a massive group of people there to help cook this week. I'm not even going to attempt to list names, as I can't remember who was there. Thanks to everyone for coming though!

And happy birthday to Ricky. Zoe even made him a cake and we sang "happy birthday" and everything. (This was a cake filled day.)

Okay, so what could we make with all of the pears?

First up was our pear sauce (which we just called "apple sauce" when we served it, and which one regular to our servings called our "famous apple sauce." Stellar!). Cut up lots of pears (or apples) toss them into a pot with some sugar, cinnamon, nutmeg, and any other delicious spices you can think of. Mix occasionally. As we learned last week, the pears are fiilllllllled with liquid. It's crazy how much comes out of them when you cook them.

Well that was...a lot of pears, but we still had an apparently almost infinite amount left to use. A fruit salad was a totally go, as we also had watermelons and bananas. But still. An entire box was still left!

Shannon said she knew a recipe for a pear cake (or just a recipe for a cake that could be modified to include pears?) so using various cake ingredients (like egg replacer! Thanks Anna/Laura!) we mixed it up and put it made a "fluted tube pear cake" in our fluted tube cake dish.*

And still so many left, so we put them in Pigeon park after the serving.

Meanwhile... Jim was making some banana bread, as he does every chance he gets. It is delicious. I have no idea if he even uses the same recipe every time or just finds random ones online and modifies them to what we have. It works out well anyway.

Since we were in a baking mood, we checked to see what else we could do. Hey, we have these weird cake mixes we will possibly never use. And lots of zucchini. So chocolate zucchini...whats? Do we have more cake dishes? No, but there were lots of muffin trays. Dice the zucchini, mix up the stuff, fill up the trays. Into the oven. Result: 42 regular sized cupcakes, and 12 mini ones. Yeah, they weren't the greatest, but they were still good.

Plus! We made lots of other food too, but I guess I just like writing about baking more. We actually had to have both tables outside with everyone standing behind it to serve everything. We had so many dishes we were out that serving forever! And nobody's plate/container was big enough to hold everything.

A guy from Megaphone also showed up to take some photos of us to go with the article that Katie wrote. Someone else at the serving took photos too. You should upload them somewhere and let us know!

So what did we make? Well, there was a stew thing (which I don't think I even saw! I'm sure it was good though), rice, a salad (tomato and lettuce and a home made dressing), a fruit salad (bananananana, watermelon, and more pear), just plain watermelon we chopped up and put into hollowed out watermelon halves, sandwiches (tomato, lettuce, mustard, margarine), raisin bread with more margarine, and sugary ice tea from a lableless tube.

The only downside was that we couldn't serve in the sun. Still better than serving in the dark like we do in winter time.

Dang, I write a lot. Do you want to write for this blog? Let me know!

Remember! Cookbook deadline is this weekend, please give me a recipe.

*A bundt cake dish thing. But the back of a box called it a fluted tube.

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