We had another full house with 24 guests at the MESH Café as well as providing 5 take-away meals. Chef John Lasiter prepared a sumptuous meal with assistance from Beryl Hiller. The meal started with meat empanadas and coleslaw. Next course was an overflowing plate of barbeque chicken, roasted potatoes provencal, more coleslaw, and corn bread. For desert there was brownies and ice cream. Teen volunteers Amalia, Elana, Orly, and Jonah assisted with preparing and plating the food while Lou Hammerman manned the sink. Continue reading
From Captain Aileen Grossberg:
On a relatively mild winter night, the Carol Starr MESH Cafe served a full house of 24 appreciative guests plus several take away meals. Lynne Kurzweil and Aileen Grossberg served as creative co-chefs, repurposing food left from the weekend’s events.
Our guests were treated to a multi-course meal of salmon salad with miso marinated carrots, felafel with tahini, pickled cucumbers and crackers as an appetizer. This was followed by squash soup garnished with house made crispy chick peas, a mixed green salad and warm pita bread. The entree was za’atar chicken strips over vegetable infused pasta with a side of farro salad. A colorful fruit bowl of grapes, cantaloupe, and berries accompanied by crumb cake completed the meal.
From Captain Stuart Green:
Shomrei’s MESH cafe opened on Tuesday night, welcoming 24 guests seeking respite from temperatures in the teens. They came early and stayed late, enjoying a hot and nutritious meal prepared by MESH superstars Lynne Kurzweil and Aileen Grossberg, sous-chef and pot washer Susan Rosenblatt, and shopper Sarah Steindel. The menu featured minestrone soup, salad, baked tilapia on a bed of greens, rice and mixed vegetables, rye bread, fruit salad, and apple strudel. Teens Amalia, Jonah, Kendall, Louis, and Max served, cleared, and kibitzed, along with MESH pros Bonny, Adrienne, and Joe.
From Captain Sarah Kravits:
On a sub-freezing night, the Carol Starr MESH Cafe at Shomrei provided many kinds of warmth — a hot meal, a warm place to eat it, and friendly people providing it. Chef Melissa Elbaum unfortunately was sick and could not cook, so Chef Lynne Kurzweil and sous-chef Aileen Grossberg came in to save the day, ingeniously repurposing food in the refrigerator and freezer. They created a delicious meal of a hearty tomato and roasted eggplant vegetable soup, a green salad with marinated tomatoes, a “flight” of quiches (broccoli and cheddar, mushroom and spinach, and salmon and goat cheese), a tuna chickpea salad on a lettuce leaf boat, toasted bagels with cream cheese and butter, and roasted root vegetables that were the last of the CSA generously provided by Judy Wildman and Zelda Greenstein (in the photos you can see the “before” and “after” of the roasting). Dessert was fruit salad and homemade chocolate/chocolate chip cookies.
From Captain Lynne Kurzweil:
We welcomed a full house of 24 guests this past Tuesday evening. We also packed up 6 takeaway meals for guests we could not accommodate inside. Our chef was Ben Lefkowitz, who came back for the second week in row during his college break, this time as executive chef. Ben prepared a great meal including Hearty Vegetable Soup with Challah and spread, Roast Chicken with Roasted Broccoli and Rice Pilaf with Mixed Vegetables. Ben baked Brownies for dessert which were served along side Cantaloupe and Blueberries. Sous Chef was Lynne Kurzweil with a last minute assist by Lanny Kurzweil. Servers were Ben, Lynne and Lanny. Cleanup crew was Ben and Lynne. (You get the picture…it was a skeleton crew.) As always, Bonny, Adrienne and security guard, Joe, were on hand to make sure everything ran smoothly.
Next week we have a great group of volunteers. However, the schedule for the last two weeks in January is completely blank. Please signup to help. We need you.
Thank you in advance.
From Captain Lynne Kurzweil:
On the first day of 2019 we welcomed 18 guests to the Carol Starr MESH Cafe at Shomrei. Uber Chef Aileen Grossberg planned, shopped and prepared a hearty meal of comfort foods to ring in the new year. First course was Black Bean Soup with Cornbread Crackers, followed by Meat Loaf, Roasted Thin Potato Chips, Roasted Green Beans with a side of Coleslaw and pickles and home baked bread and spread. Dessert was home baked Brownies, Vanilla Soy Ice Cream and Grapes. The meal was totally enjoyed with seconds for all who wanted.
From Captain Fern Heinig:
The Tuesday before Thanksgiving we had a full Cafe. 23 guests joined us for dinner at our tables while 2 guests had take away.
We were also blessed with an army of volunteers. Key Club student Emily volunteered for the first time while regular Amalia and Lewis, with three friends came in time for service. Captain Fern had four adult friends, Holly, Brian, Tracie, and Mary come with 8 teenagers. MESH staff regulars, Adrienne, Bonny, and Joe rounded out the crew.
Report from Captain Alex Kent:
Shomrei’s Carol Starr MESH Cafe served a full house on Tuesday night, and also packaged up 7 additional meals for those left out in the cold.
Aileen Grossberg and Sarah Steindel stepped into the void as there was no cook signed up for Tuesday night. Sarah prepared food the day before, and Aileen had everything prepped and ready to go with detailed instructions for Captain Alex Kent to assemble and cook. Luckily there were 5 High School helpers on hand. Thank you teens! Alex and Jaden from the Montclair High Key Club, and Louis, Max, and Kendall from West Orange High School assembled salads, made fruit salad, buttered bread, served, and did dishes.
Report from Captain Stuart Green:
Last night, we hosted an end-of-month full house of 26 guests (24 sit-ins, 2 take-aways) for a sumptuous meal. MESH superstar Lynne Kurzweil, ably assisted by sous-chefs (and dishwashers) Melissa Elbaum and Susan Rosenblatt, cooked up a feast of egg and tuna salad appetizer with cucumber and tomato slices and pita chips; cucumber salad; baked turkey meat loaf and sweet potatoes; sauteed onions, tomatoes, and green beans; and a dessert of ginger snaps, mini-brownies, and pineapple and honeydew melon fruit salad. MESH staffers Adrienne, Bonny and Joe also helped out.
Report from Captain Lynne Kurzweil:
This past Tuesday night we welcomed a full complement of 24 seated guests to the Carol Starr MESH Cafe at Shomrei. We also prepared takeout meals for 7 guests, including a family with 3 children who arrived late. Chef Fern Heinig was in her prime, preparing a hearty and delicious meal. First course was fresh made egg salad and seared tuna (repurposed from the weekend). Main course was honey baked chicken, mashed potatoes, carrots, a tasty challah roll and a green salad with string beans, cucumber and green pepper. Continue reading