Food Science Club members prepare sweet potatoes for holiday pies.

Sweet potato pies

UD's Food Science Club bakes sweet potato pies for Food Bank of Delaware

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2:32 p.m., Nov. 21, 2011--To help those in need, the University of Delaware Food Science Club teamed up with the Food Bank of Delaware to bake delicious sweet potato pies for the Thanksgiving holiday. Those pies will be distributed as part of the Food Bank of Delaware’s mobile food pantry taking place at Eisenberg Elementary School in New Castle from 5-7 p.m., Tuesday, Nov. 22.

Club members estimate that they baked close to 80 pies this year using sweet potatoes grown in the Garden for the Community and ingredients bought through the Food Science Club budget. 

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The Garden for the Community is located on one-third of an acre on UD's College of Agriculture and Natural Resources (CANR) campus and provides a steady stream of fresh vegetables, herbs and fruits to Delaware’s hungry. The garden is a partnership between the Food Bank of Delaware and the CANR faculty and staff, undergraduate students and graduate students. Last year, the Garden for the Community donated three tons of vegetables, fruits and herbs to the Food Bank of Delaware. 

Patricia Beebe, Food Bank of Delaware president and CEO, noted the importance of their relationship with the University. "As we work to feed more Delawareans, the importance of fresh, sustainable produce cannot be emphasized enough. The pie project is a perfect example of farm to table -- sweet potatoes grown right here in Delaware to feed residents of our state. Last year the families who received these freshly-made pies were incredibly appreciative."

About 20 students, mostly from the Food Science Club but also from the Alpha Sigma Alpha sorority, helped out this year, doing prep work and baking pies from 12:30-4 p.m., Wednesday, Nov.16, through Friday, Nov. 18. 

Kali Kniel, associate professor in the Department of Animal and Food Sciences, helped coordinate the event and Melinda Litvinas, manager of the UDairy Creamery, helped the club by ordering all of the ingredients necessary to bake the pies. 

Teresa Brodeur, a CANR junior and president of the Food Science Club, said she wanted to get involved with the Food Bank of Delaware after attending events with her service fraternity, Alpha Phi Omega, last spring. “One of the service events that I attended weekly was at the Food Bank where we helped to organize the different donated food items. I really enjoyed the people who were in charge there and they made the experience both educational as well as enjoyable.” 

Having missed out on baking the pies last year due to a schedule conflict, Brodeur, who one day hopes to open her own bakery, said that she was really looking forward to taking part in the event this year because “everyone seemed like they had so much fun last year.” 

For more information on the Food Bank of Delaware, visit the website.

Article by Adam Thomas

Photos by Danielle Quigley

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