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Posted by on Apr 16, 2014 in Service | 0 comments

How do you cook for large crowd ? – Part 3 – Preparation

How do you cook for large crowd ? – Part 3 – Preparation

  • SumoMe

So how did our day of preparation and serving looked like?

We had prayed and planned for big day. The day  finally arrived  and  we were  ready to get on with.

But wait….

It is easy to get so occupied in the details of the day. However I would say, it is even more important that you set some time apart to spend the time with the Lord, especially on the busy day like the one we had.Trust in Him to work out the details of last minute.Do not be anxious.

I felt the Holy Spirit at work in me at every step.I can not believe i am saying that with confidence because I am not cool like that of my own.

Now let’s get on the work: We had divided the entrée(enchilada and rice) among three of us. Our friends from small group,baked and brought countless batches of cookies and i don’t know how many pans of refried beans.{Those hands must be hurting hard after opening cans after cans,i can tell you that much}

Our menu: Chicken Enchiladas casserole, Rice and beans ; Cookie(any kind)  for dessert

Amount and serving

Chicken: 85-90 lb; Rice: 30 lb.; Beans (refried) – 11 sets of cans. Each set had 8 can (14 Oz can)

Tortillas: 24 tortillas/Pan; Enchilada pan (20 * 12 inches):14; Shredded cheese: 14 lbs.(16 Oz pack)

I personally used 3(24 Oz)cans of enchilada sauce and 1 lb of cheese per pan. However, if you wanted to you can get by being using little less of sauce and cheese. Each pan had 18 servings.

Word of advice

Know your stove top, heat distribution and pots that you are using.My lack of experience told me that i can hurry up the process by dumping tons of rice in a long big pot. I threw away 5 pounds of cooked rice. Very tall pot with tons of rice into it yielded the combination of overcooked gummy rice(think oatmeal) and uncooked crunchy rice at the same time.

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Why do you need an extra pair of hands and feet in your kitchen?

I was feeling very confident about the cooking day. Overconfident likely that I almost thought in the last minute that I don’t need any help following day. I was so wrong.

  • First, it is efficient as long as you are not having too many cooks in kitchen. I can not tell you the mountain load of chicken that my friend Paula deboned or the number of cans that she opened or enchilada pans that she layered.
  • It breaks the monotony of cooking. Paula and I had great conversations while cooking. We actually sat down, had coffee, laughed  a lot all the while cooking at such big scale.I do not remember this happening to me, ever before never.
  • By allowing someone to help you, you are also allowing the person to participate who may or may not have been able to participate otherwise.

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What amazed me?

Every one of our friend, who came there to serve with us or helped us in any manner, were so happy to do so. Genuinely happy.The spirit of God moving each one of us.

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At the field

We had cooked for 250 people in mind but only half of them turned up being the first Friday of the month. However number fluctuates and not set. Yes, it was momentarily disappointing until we found out that church from across the street where the ministry serves; let us keep the leftover food in their refrigerator to use in the following morning feeding. So actually it worked out well too.

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  1. I saw the people who have  the heart for homeless. People who are ready to step in their shoes literally for real and experience it for themselves.
  2. People using their gifts. Some of them were giving haircuts to those, who could not afford it otherwise.
  3. Youth and adult alike, serving and engaging in conversation with homeless.
  4. I heard the testimony of once homeless, now redeemed and life transformed by the power of gospel.
  5. I watched as adult teamed up with little kids and guided them as they passed the napkins and forks with smile from one table to another where our guests were seated.
  6. It was pleasure to see the kids making art, painting pots sitting along with the homeless man.

We are thankful for the homeless ministry like Taking It to the streets,who are being the hands and feet of Jesus and loving the least of these.It was the experience to remember.Each one of us who cooked,told the same thing,we can’t wait to do this all over again !

 “For where two or three gather in my name, there am I with them.” – Matthew 18:20

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