February at SouthWest Kitchens!

Already February, my kitchen friends!
It’s cold outside, oh yes, but so warm over a simmering saucepan: fancy a good kitchen sweat?!


Our beautiful community kitchen needs love.
Last month, I told you about the dangerously dangling faucet and the dying kitchen counter. The list of repairs is getting longer : the walls need patches of plaster, the cupboard doors could definetely use a touch of paint, and – last and certainly not least – our big refrigerator is leaning forward, like the tower of Pisa.

The replacement of the sink, faucet and counter will be done very shortly by a professional. The other chores, however, could become the duty of a happy few who have painting, repairing and/or lifting skills. Any volunteers? Please let me know asap and I will find a date to suit everyone.


While waiting for the kitchen to receive the love he/she/it deserves (does a kitchen have a gender in English ?), I have to admit I’m a little reluctant to fit extra activities in the schedule, as I’m a little concerned a faucet incident is about to occur.
Hence, February will be another month without cooking workshops for adults – with two notable exceptions : community production workshops every Wednesday morning, and the Centre des femmes’s collective cooking workshop on Feb. 26th.
Talking about production and love, should anyone be reminded that St. Valentine’s Day is coming up ? For the occasion, I’d like to serve a special Valentine menu at Feb. 14th Welcome Wednesday community meal. I’m thinking chocolate for dessert, of course, and pork mole, a Mexican stew cooked in a hot pepper and cocoa sauce. Any other ideas ? Shoot them ! The menu is still in the making, nothing has been decided yet.

We are very lucky, at SouthWest, to be able to count on food donations from Harvest Montreal and our other partners – thanks to them, we are able to keep our grocery bills low, and offer meals at very gentle prices.
Milk and eggs are part of those ingredients we don’t have to buy anymore, thanks to our Breakfast Club coordinators who give us their surplusses. Cans of chick peas and other legumes come to us in such great quantities that we hardly know where to stock them anymore !
However, other basic ingredients are considered as small luxuries in our kitchen : unsalted butter, coco oil, milk and cream, olive oil, chocolate, nuts or specialty flours (buckwheat, rye, rice, etc.). For those products we are looking for sponsors. Maybe you could be one – and get the Mission a pound of butter when it’s on special offer at Pharmaprix – or maybe you know a local business owner who would like to help us out ? Please ask around: Verdun is a small community, and there’re many people out there who want to help. We just need to find them !

For the complete program of cooking activities at the Mission and the dates of the next community meals, please download the attached calendars, produced by Verdun’s food security table Verdun sans faim. The one on the left shows where to find community meals; the one on the right has information on collective kitchens and food security.

 Share the news, share the warmth !