A few weeks ago, I did a workshop at The Stop Community Food Centre in Toronto.
I was lucky enough to be invited to one of their fundraisers where I learned all about who they are and what they do.
Never heard of The Stop?
Well, their mission is simple – it is to strive to increase access to healthy food in a manner that maintains dignity, builds health and community, and challenges inequality to those that need it the most.
When I was organizing my workshop, I spoke to the lovely Cara, Senior Development Officer at The Stop (honestly, the sweetest woman) who told me that this year marks 35 years of operation. From its origins as one of Canada’s first food banks, The Stop has become a thriving community food centre.
While Cara was giving me a tour, she said, “Thirty-five years of working on poverty is hardly cause for celebration. But 35 years of working to build community, understanding, and connection, and challenging ourselves and the systems that breed inequity, is more than a legacy. It is a way forward. We are marking this anniversary, moving forward by looking back. Grateful for the years of support, we believe we are stronger together, responsible for one another, our fates intertwined. We will continue to work with people struggling in poverty, and to insist you add your voice to the chorus for change.”
And that is why I chose to help.
She and her team are working so hard to build community and create change; to build healthier, more connected, and a more self-determined community; to inform progressive public policy; and to work with people who are income insecure and face social isolation, and who experience barriers to access and inclusion.
The Stop achieves its impact through:
– community services that help meet people’s immediate needs, including a healthy food bank, a drop-in meals program, and peer advocacy;
– community programs that build skills and support networks, including community kitchens, urban agriculture initiatives, a dynamic volunteer program, and training and support for community advocates;
– social enterprises, including The Stop’s Farmers’ Market and Market Café; and
– change-making, through public education & engagement, advocacy, and policy work.
The Stop’s work is founded on the values of social justice, dignity, and respect.
56,700+ meals served in The Stop’s Drop-in.
9,200 emergency food hampers distributed to 17,000+ people in The Stop’s Food Bank.
400 volunteers contributed 40,000 hours to deliver The Stop’s community services and programs.
8,000+ seedlings grown in The Stop’s greenhouse for their urban agriculture programs and more than 40 community gardens across the city.
2,200 visits made to The Stop’s peer-run Community Advocacy Office, resulting in over 1,300 phone calls and referrals.
88 healthy babies born in The Stop’s Healthy Beginnings program.
It is truly an incredible organization! For more on The Stop and to take a peek at their annual report, check out this page for more details!
And, now, on to the task at hand…building your own fritatta easily and affordably so you too will have another recipe in your repertoire that you can whip together at a moments notice!
This fritatta above was a springtime fritatta that had leeks and a bunch of greens and then I stuffed zucchini flowers with ricotta and finished it in the oven!
This frittata above, had some farm fresh goodies from Plan B Organic Farms (on one of the days I volunteered there)…and if you’re ever in the Hamilton, Ontario area, pay them a visit…they were so generous that they sponsored my first workshop by giving me all the veggies for my fritatta that day!!
And this fritatta above is a perfect example of how beautiful a fritatta can look when you top it with luscious goods like goat cheese and roasted cherry tomatoes as it is finishing in the oven!
So, what are you waiting for? Get cracking!!!
- 8 eggs, beaten
- Olive oil (roughly 3 tbsp)
- ⅓ c dairy (optional - think plain milk, almond milk, butter milk, plain yogurt, tzatziki)*
- 1 small onion, diced
- 2 cups veggies (think leafy greens, sauteed peppers, leftover broccoli)
- ½ cup starch (think rice, small pasta, corn, potatoes)
- ½ c meat, optional (you don't really need this, but you can throw it in if you have leftover sausage, ground beef, or even a chopped up hamburger in the fridge)
- ¼ c cheese (grated cheddar, crumbled feta, diced brie, bluecheese)
- salt and pepper to taste
- Topping to make your dish shine (cherry tomatoes, pesto, crumbled melty cheese, etc)
- NOTE: *Dairy makes more of your meal, stretching out portions to more making the dish more cost effective (and giving it a richer taste especially if you use creamier options)
- Heat the oven to 350.
- In a large skillet (I like to use a cast iron pan); on medium heat, add one tablespoon of olive oil; slowly add onions and cook until wilted and slightly browned.
- Meanwhile, in a large bowl, mix beaten eggs, salt and pepper to taste and dairy of your choice, if you're using it.
- Pour into the heated skillet and let the bottom set for a minute, loosening the sides.
- Add the veggies, meat, starch and stir to distribute evenly; lifting the sides and letting some of the runny egg pour underneath and continue cooking for 5-6 minutes.
- Add topping of your choice (if you are using) and place pan in oven; continue cooking until set and browned (about 15 minutes)....note: if you want your topping crispy/bubbly, you can place it under the broiler for a moment!
- Remove from oven and add more topping if you wish.
- Serve immediately or serve at room temperature...both are epic suggestions!!