MESH Report 12/4/18

image1 (3)From Captain Stuart Green:

The third night of Hannukah saw a full house for the Carol Starr MESH cafe: 24 guests, 4 takeaways, 10 volunteers, and 3 MESH staff. We were so busy that unfortunately we had to turn away 4 latecomers.

Amidst this hectic scene, Chef Melissa Elbaum was a model of calm, almost single-handedly preparing a sumptuous meal of artichoke salad (repurposed) and bread, chop salad, broiled salmon, finger potatoes, root vegetables, and the obligatory Hannukah dessert of donuts and grapes. The meal was served and cleaned up by MESH teens Brenden, Jonah, Siona, Pacey, Molly, Louis, Max, and Kendall, plus MESH professionals Adrienne, Bonny, and Joe. Continue reading

MESH Cafe Oct 30, 2018

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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.

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MESH Cafe Oct 16, 2018

Report from Captain Stuart Green:

On a crisp autumn evening, the MESH cafe hosted 23 guests for a delicious and nourishing meal. The menu consisted of freshly made broiled salmon served with a selection of leftovers repurposed from Avital Ely’s bat mitzvah lunch, including a tuna salad and egg salad appetizer, with challah, sesame noodles, tomato and cucumber salad, quiche, and cookies. Staffing was light: Chef John Lasiter worked his magic on the fish and leftovers, and washed pots, while MESH professionals Adrienne, Bonny, and Joe worked the front of the house

Stuart Green

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Carol Starr Mesh Cafe May 31, 2018


Report from Captain Stuart Green:

On a sultry Tuesday evening in late May, the Carol Starr MESH cafe hosted 22 guests. Naturally, given temperatures in the nineties, it was just the time for the walk-in refrigerator to go on the fritz. A refrigerator repair man worked on it diligently until he cut his finger and had to go to the emergency room (he apparently will be okay). Another refrigerator repair man showed up and provided a temporary fix. Lisa Zelenetz stuck through it all. Continue reading

Mesh Cafe Dec 26, 2017

image1 (4)From Captain Stuart Green

Historians differ over exactly when Jews started eating Chinese food on Christmas Day. Some attribute the practice to Benjamin Cardozo; others to Elena Kagan. In any event, this minhag is now so well established, that reservations at T.S. Ma must be made weeks in advance. Aileen Grossberg had the idea of sharing this custom with our guests at the MESH cafe, and so, on a freezing cold night the day after Christmas, cooked up a feast of Chinese-inspired dishes – assisted in the afternoon by sous chef Beryl Hiller – to warm the heart and belly. Continue reading

Mesh Cafe Oct 10, 2017


From Captain Stuart Green

On a warm October evening that felt more like May, fifteen appreciative guests dined at the MESH Café. A relaxed and level-headed Chef Melissa Elbaum cooked up a delicious main course of baked cod in citrus marinade, supplemented by food left over from the Syrian Supper Club – hummus, baba ganoush, crudité, pita, rice, pasta, green beans, green salad, rice pudding, and fruit.
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Mesh Cafe Sept 12, 2017

mesh 2017 sept12

From Captain Stuart Green:

It was a gala opening night of the 2017-18 MESH Cafe season at Shomrei. Sixteen guests joined us for dinner.

Chef Rachel Kanter prepared a sumptuous meal of roasted and marinated salmon fillets, orzo with pesto sauce, green salad, and cookies and fresh fruit. All this was prefaced by hearty lentil/barley/vegetable soup which had been frozen and repurposed from IHN. There was plenty of food for seconds and take-homes. Continue reading

Mesh Cafe Jan 10, 2017


From Captain Stuart Green:

On a blustery January night, twenty guests joined us for the MESH cafe. The first course, classic Tuscan minestrone soup, was prepared by the gang from STOM. Lynne Kurzweil, assisted by Melissa Elbaum, cooked the rest — mouth-watering maple-crusted chicken legs, sumptuous farm-raised baked sweet potatoes, creamy salade de chou (cole slaw), and for dessert, madeleines and other curated cookies and locally-sourced (ie, Shop Rite) fruit salad.

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Mesh Cafe June 7, 2016

MESH 2016 june 7

From Captain Stuart Green:

Whether or not they had voted in the New Jersey presidential primary (and, to judge by the dinner conversation, quite a few had), 24 guests joined us for Shomrei’s MESH Cafe. Celebrity chefs Aileen Grossberg and Lynne Kurzweil, using a resourceful combination of leftovers and fresh ingredients, whipped up a hearty meal of salsa and chips, green salad, whole grain bread, shepherd’s pie, roasted vegetables (cauliflower, brussels sprouts, peppers, and carrots), and cinnamon crisps served with pareve ice cream and fruit. The chefs seemed to be having so much fun cooking and schmoozing that they hardly wanted to go home! Shomrei super teens Amalia, Gus, Isaac, Matt, Sam, and Roy handled the setup, serving, and cleanup, with help from MESH staffers Adrienne, Bonny, Andi and Dev.  Your captain, who’s been away for a while, was impressed by how smoothly everything ran. Indeed, there was relatively little for him to do. If only the presidential primaries could be so pleasant!

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