Community Dinner March 12, 2015

On March 12th, the Community Garden Outreach class prepared a dinner for the USF community and greater San Francisco community from, for the most part, the USF Garden and from gleaning produce from the surrounding local farmer’s markets. The students were split into several groups to manage the food prep. for the dinner, and even without collaboration over what flavors would go well together the food turned out amazing and complimented each other nicely!

The Pictures above show some of the carefully thought out food prep. that the students put into the dinner in order to achieve and serve a scrumptious meal that ranged from hearty vegan pizza to rich pear raspberry tart! YUM! The community aspect of these dinners truly begins inside the kitchen where students build strong relationships over food and create a dialogue over how food brings people together. The kitchen is also where the foundation of team work and trial and error is experimented with, and for the most part has favored success over error.  This community then reaches beyond food and out to the individuals who attend and participate in the “family style” feed fest, and it is clear to see that the overwhelming majority enjoyed themselves, the food, and the people around them.

Last day of class and Homestead projects!

  • Week of November 18th, 2013:

Today was the last official meeting of the semester! For the past two weeks, our class had  been preparing for our different homestead projects that we would be presenting today! It was amazing, there were many different homestead projects, and everyone’s projects were different in their own ways. Some classmates did a fermentation projects, others made homemade jams, cookies, scones, and even creating their own vanilla extract. It was a great day of class that ended the semester well. Our class was able to share our experience of our projects, and everyone had full tummies of different types of food (mostly sweets). As the day grew colder, our class enjoyed some nice hot apple cider along with apple pie and olallieberry pie! Yummy!

Here are some pictures of some of the class’ presentations:

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Last Farm Stand!

  • Week of November 11th, 2013:

This week was our class’ last farm stand of the semester! Can you believe the semester is already coming to an end? Our class has improved and gained new insight on our community and what it means to be one. This last farm stand was able to put together every aspect of what it means to be an organized farm stand. It was awesome! Even though the weather was a bit cold and windy at times, the farm stand always had new people coming by to ask about what our class was doing.

Here are some awesome pictures of some of the food our class was serving :)

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Last Farm Stand! 11/14/13!

Hello to everyone! Please join our class, the Community Garden Outreach class, for our last farm stand of the semester (and year) and come learn about our mission statement of advocating and spreading the word about how eating local and organic is healthy for you and your community!

We’re looking forward to seeing you all and thank you for a great semester!

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Last Community Dinner!

  • Week of November 4th, 2013:

This week was our class’ last week cooking community dinners for St. Cyprian’s! It’s been an awesome semester with the church and hopefully, the impact left from our class was a great and positive one that will broaden relations. As a recap, for our last community dinner, the break down into groups was kept the same as any other dinner: 1)Appetizer, 2) Salad, 3)Soup, 4)Entree and 5) Dessert. This week our class worked extra hard to ensure that the last dinner would be the best dinner. Our class expected a big turn out and low and behold… the turn out was great! It was a full dinner filled with many classmates, along with their family members and friends. It was great to see the many faces of the community that we were serving.

Our last community dinner, as stated, brought out the best of the best! For this week the appetizer group made a tomato, basil bruschetta; the salad group made a mixed veggie salad with apples, and a kale medley; the soup group made a mixed vegetable miso soup; the entree group made veggie (kale and squash) enchiladas and last the dessert group made lavender bread pudding!

Here are just some of the many pictures of our community dinner!

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Last Community Dinner ! 11/07/2013

Come join our class for our last community dinner at St. Cyprian’s on Turk and Lyon! Any donations are recommended! Our class would love for you to be there to celebrate the end of our semester! Thank you for all the support; Our class wouldn’t have been able to feed off such positive energy and liveliness!

A big shout out to all the farms that have helped us in our attempts to glean and promote our goal of spreading local, organic and healthier foods around to our community– and educating them on what it means to have sustainable urban gardens!

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Sauerkraut, Natural Dyes and Popcorn

  • Week of October 14th, 2013:

This week our class was supposed to visit a local urban garden called “Glide Rooftop Garden”, however, plans were cancelled. But luckily, we had other plans in store. Instead of urban gardens, this week our class made homemade and fresh sauerkraut using the greens (mostly kale) that was ready to be harvested. As a class, we were divided into two groups, one group would initially make the first batch of sauerkraut, while the other group was making lavender wands, harvesting lupine seeds and/or weeding around the garden.

For our sauerkraut, we used a lot of kale found in the garden, but one could use possibly any type of green(s) they so pleased. Here is a link to last semester’s “How to make sauerkraut”. How to Make Sauerkraut link! At the end of our labors, we had made three mason jars filled of sauerkraut and designated three different classmates to watch over the fermentation process.

Here are some pictures of our day :D !

Making Lavender WandsHeather and Grace enjoying arts and crafts

Making Sauerkraut (2)

Making Sauerkraut (3)

Making Seed Packets-Seed Saving (Lupine Seeds)Harvesting seeds…

  • Week of October 21st, 2013:

I gotta admit, no one probably knew that the natural dye of pomegranate was a mixture of sea foam green and azure blue- but it is! You would think that a pomegranate’s natural dye was red because of the red stains you obtain when eating them, but it’s not! This week, our class worked with natural dyes using everyday plants around our very own garden. Some other natural dyes we used were extracted from onion skins, pomegranate skin (everything but the seeds) and the unripe seeds of sunflowers. For each dye, we heated up 3 stainless steel bowls over a flame and brought them each to a boil. When boiling, we threw in the onion skins in one bowl and the others in their bowls and covered them all with lids. After a while, the natural color will come out and that means soaking fabrics in the bowl (while boiling)!’

Here are some pictures of our day!

578084_10151936211737159_1884373146_nCristina is very excited to be making dyes :D

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  • Week of October 28th, 2013:

Our class just happened to land on October 31st this week, which is Halloween! This week, our class was divided into the different groups as the previous months to start prepping for our community dinner and farm stand. It’s going to be very interesting what every group will be making!

Aside from assigning groups, our class popped our own popcorn! Rachel, our professor, had left over “Black Dakota” kernels– a type of kernel that is sharp (pointy) and deep purple/almost black in color. We used a manual turn style popper for our popcorn and a portable gas stove. First we poured a oil enough to coat the bottom and also a generous amount of butter. Next we poured in our kernels and frequently turned the popcorn to prevent burning. After popping all of our kernels, our class experimented by using rosemary, or seaweed in our popcorn! It turned out very delicious!

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Emily in costume for Halloween :D

Our class, after popping popcorn migrated to a room inside the School of Education building right next to the USF garden to watch a documentary called “The Garden”. The Garden is a documentary focused on the struggles of the South Central Community farm back in 2003-2005 and their hardship of trying to keep their community garden from being shut down. The documentary was very touching, and can easily be accessible online by purchasing through Amazon and other venues.

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