Meals on Wheels

Jean Poutine and I answered Edmonton’s Meals on Wheels call to Food Bloggers on Monday. We were greeted by Meals on Wheels Manager for Marketing and Fund Development, Kerryn North, who provided us with some background on the organization. All the staff and volunteers who we met along the way were friendly and genuinely dedicated to the cause. And cheerful – especially for a Monday!

Along with our fellow food bloggers/kitchen compatriots, the Edmonton Journal’s Liane Faulder of Eat My Words, Maki of In My Element, and Marianne and Charles of Loosen Your Belt, we helped the good people of Meals on Wheels prepare some of the meals of the day in their bright and bustling industrial kitchen.

L to R: Charles, Marianne, and Maki on the hot food assembly line.

Anyone remember the I Love Lucy conveyor belt scene? Don’t worry, it wasn’t like that. The Meals on Wheels people were very nice and we actually managed to keep up with the action on the conveyor belt without having to stuff any food down our shirts.

Monsieur Poutine and I were at the head of the line adding the cold food items to the delivery boxes and making sure that the right things went into the right boxes before the hot food items were added by our team-mates. There are a lot of things to consider: one meal or two, medical conditions, food allergies, pre-cut, soft food, etc.  Fortunately our Meals on Wheels trainer, Cook Rachelle Semnovitch, was gently guiding us at the front of the line, and Chef Glen Francis was doing the quality control checking at the end of the line.

Jean Poutine and Truly Scrumptious at the head of the food line.

We ended up as the featured photo in Liane Faulder’s Eat My Words blog post about the event. We feel that it was because we looked the cutest in our hair nets.

There were many activities that the Food Bloggers were involved in for the day. Here are a few:

Liane Faulder measuring flour for blueberry muffins with Cook Rachelle in the back, keeping an eye on things.

Truly and Jean cutting up bread for turkey stuffing.

Marianne and Charles packaging desserts. Note Charles' fashion-forward beard net.

Meals on Wheels makes all their food on-site with fresh ingredients – no processed food! They follow Canada’s Food Guide (to my surprise I discovered that I need to eat 2 to 3 more daily servings of vegetables. I’ll get right on that - the vegetable family is one of my favorite highly functional families).

Meals on Wheels is an amazing organization that offers a valuable service to people who are housebound or can’t prepare their own meals. They depend on volunteer help and cash donations for much of what they do. Check out their Annual Christmas Fundraising Campaign on now until the end of December.

Merry Christmas from the Meals on Wheels Food Blogging elves!

Photographs by Katherine Dalusong and Liane Faulder