A recent visit from storm Stella has made it clear that winter is not quite done with us yet. Slow clap for the groundhog…he definitely called this one. Snow continues to cover our roofs and lawns, reminding us to be patient as we eagerly await spring in New England. For now, we embrace the outdoor beauty and seek refuge in our weekly gatherings at a local church, where the Change the World Kids host Anti-Cabin Fever Dinners every Wednesday throughout the winter!
Local Anti-Cabin Fever Dinners are the perfect excuse for our neighbors to withdraw from their respective fireplaces and gather as a community. Attending such events has become a special Terwelp family tradition with friends throughout the years. These Anti-Cabin Fever Dinners provide those who attend with three-course meals prepared by CTWKids and a volunteer chef from the area. Each week, a new chef joins the kids in the kitchen to help raise money and spread the word of CTWKids. The dinners quickly become anticipated events in which we stop to relax and gather, mid-week, with friends or family. Now, as the anti-fever season comes to a close, we preciously await the final few dinners left on the calendar. We have undoubtedly come to consider these meals very special occasions, which cumulatively help support our local group of Change the World Kids.
Each Anti-Cabin Fever Dinner donation contributes to the Change the World Kids’ annual trip to re-forest Bosque para Siempre, a migratory rain forest in Costa Rica. Their re-foresting, in turn, helps support our local migratory songbirds, in addition to other native forest species. As such, each meal served is a step toward a worth-while environmental cause that has piqued the interest of our local Woodstock middle and high schoolers.
Our CTWKids also do a large amount of community work here in the Upper Valley. They are all true community leaders, who care about helping local individuals and organizations in need, as well as maintaining the natural world around them. Food justice is just another branch of CTWKids’ mission. The kids aim to create and strengthen local systems and resources, in addition to providing hands-on assistance to promote sustainable lifestyles. One example of this, which we find very cool, includes the CTWKids root cellar. The cellar utilizes earth’s insulation to keep produce at a constant humidity and temperature throughout the cooler months. We call this a long-term solution. Local farmers helped create this special cellar, which now keeps produce throughout the winter without using non-renewable energy or an extravagant cooling system. Pretty neat, right?
March 15th marked the Anti-Cabin Fever Dinner now annually orchestrated by our very own Rick Terwelp of The Jackson House Inn! With ample help from our Change the World Kids, Rick prepared a three-course meal consisting of wild arugula salad, Welsh rarebit, and savory apple tart.
Wild arugula and baby greens started the meal off with a bang. Rick tossed the salad with delicious parmesan, pickled onion, beet chips and candied pecans. Then the kids added a little pile of cheese to top each bowl. We had shaved the cheese from this giant wheel earlier that day – yum!
Considering the snow that had fallen the day before, nothing quite satisfied our bellies like a warm and luxurious bowl of Rick’s Welsh rarebit. The kids helped coat pieces of toasted sourdough with a warm emulsified cheese sauce and sprinkled slow-roasted tomatoes, sweet onion, and candied bacon on top. A quick sprinkle of organic microgreens and a drizzle of balsamic, and there it was, delivered to each guest – a true rendition of our Jackson House breakfast! Lucky for you, we’ve written our Welsh rarebit recipe here.
Rick and the kids concluded the meal on a high note – with a savory apple tart. They added a filling of currants, cranberries, and apples to a mixture of garlic, onion, and thyme (savory!). Before baking, the filling was wrapped in pastry dough and and topped with toasted pumpkin and sunflower seeds. Our fellow diners tried to put their finger on the “spice” that made this dish so savory. In fact, the secret was the apples playing off the sweet roasted garlic. A dollop of vanilla bean gelato atop each serving made this savory apple tart a home run.
We are honored to have contributed to a meal put on by our local Change the World Kids. Their contagious energy and enthusiastic buzz create an overall cheerful and joyous vibe throughout the dining room. Yesterday’s dinner was a complete success because of them! Community, passion, and food – all were abundant last night. Thank you to CTWKids and our community for another incredible Anti-Fever Dinner.