TOP IMAGE © Courtesy of Good Food Impact
By Allie Murray
Food insecurity is an issue that impacts people in many different ways, and this is the driving force behind Good Food Impact, a community initiative based in Stouffville, Ontario.
Good Food Impact, formerly known as The Good Food Project, began in July 2021 as a research project for Stouffville resident Emma Wood. Before starting her project, Wood recognized the need for a service like this in her community and with the resources from her project, she launched the volunteer-run initiative.
“Food and community go hand-in-hand,” Wood shared. “At Good Food Impact, we know our connection to the communities we work in is vital. We are grateful for the support from the community and our community partners.”
Their work begins in the kitchen, where their Kitchen Director creates recipes that are distributed to the community through their community partners at the Whitchurch-Stouffville Food Bank and local shelter Hummingbird Hub.
Beginning with the idea for a recipe, the Kitchen Director creates something fun and flavourful. The team then tries the recipe before bringing it into the Good Food Kitchen, then the Grocery Coordinator sources ingredients from local stores and community gardens. Once everything is set, the cooks make the meals and distribute them throughout the community.
“By providing access to meals, food insecure, income insecure, and any resident in need of a hearty, healthy meal will be able to access one, free of charge,” Wood said. “The meals are meant to target residents who are unable to eat adequately due to financial constraints, however can also be accessed by residents who are in need of a meal, whatever the reason. We do not ask questions, because food insecurity is experienced and looks differently for everyone.”
Working on the philosophy that good food fuels us, Wood explained that every meal made in their kitchen is made with a focus on nutrition and high-quality meals that resemble restaurant quality.
Tex-Mex Bowl Recipe
A well-loved and straightforward recipe, the Tex-Mex Bowl from Good Food Impact can be easily adapted for all likings!
- 1 tsp cooking oil
- 1 medium onion
- ½ red bell pepper
- ½ green bell pepper
- 2 cups black beans
- ¾ pound chicken breast
- Taco seasoning
- 2 cups rice
- 1 cup frozen corn
- 1 cup shredded cheese
- 1 jalapeño pepper
- Prepare rice as per package.
Chop onions, bell peppers and jalapeños. Set aside.
- Cut the chicken breast into 1-inch cubes and saute over medium-high heat until cooked through. Then add taco seasoning and a bit of water until the chicken is completely tossed in sauce. Set aside.
- In a skillet over medium-high heat, add onion and cook until softened. Next, add bell peppers and cook for 2-3 minutes. Then add black beans and frozen corn. Cook for 2-3 minutes, until everything is heated through.
- Now it’s time to assemble the bowls! Start with a rice base, then add the vegetable mixture and top with the chicken. Sprinkle ¼ cup of shredded cheese and garnish with jalapeño peppers. Enjoy with salsa, sour cream, or guacamole!
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