It was La Querencia’s first Common Meal by the kids! It was George’s idea. After consulting with the parents, who all agreed, George asked for volunteers, got many enthusiastic participants, and the planning began.
The first task was creating the menu. All easily agreed on mac and cheese, chicken, salad and dessert (the last one was easy!). George googled “Easy Mac and Cheese,” and, lo and behold, up popped up a very easy recipe! There are just four ingredients: macaroni, cheese, sour cream and one egg. None of this Kraft box stuff for our community! George proposed ice cream sandwiches for the dessert, and everyone enthusiastically voted for those.
Prep work started yesterday after school, with the kids coming to the Common House to bake cookies. Fortunately, we had an abundance of cookie dough that had been sold to community members by several of the girls for their school’s fund raiser. Armed with ice cream scoops, trays and parchment paper, all took turns scooping the dough onto the paper, putting the trays in the oven and then, not so patiently, watching the cookies bake.
After a break for dinners at their homes, the gang reassembled for the great Ice Cream Sandwich Assembly Project! It got a little messy here and there, as the ice cream melted, but all was completed without a hitch.
George did the grocery shopping while the kids were at school. It was an early dismissal day, so when the kids arrived home, they all trooped down to the Common House to set the tables (34 people had signed up!), and combined the ingredients for the mac and cheese. It was off to play, then, with a return to the Common House at 5:00 p.m. for the finishing touches: filling the water pitchers, putting the salad greens in the salad bowls, putting all these plus the bottles of salad dressing on the tables and sautéing the chicken (already cooked and in bite-size pieces from Trader Joe’s) briefly in olive oil and mixing Trader Joe’s pesto sauce in with it.
Still a half hour to spare before 6:00! Belinda and Lilly, to fill up the time, choreographed a dance to do for dinner entertainment. The girls also practiced taking a group bow to acknowledge the “Three Cheers for the Chefs” that was sure to come from the impressed diners!
Show time! There was a special Chefs’ Table reserved for the crew. The food was hot and delicious, and everybody raved!
It was a fun evening, a great collaborative meal—and one that we’re all looking forward to having happen again!
Submitted by resident Pat L-B
Stop by for Open House Sunday 1-3