Meals on Wheels

Galveston Island Meals on Wheels’ annual Wine and Dine event is April 25 at The Hotel Galvez & Spa. The Galvez’s Executive Chef Michael Jacobson created the menu for the event. Jacobson, center, with Meals on Wheels’ Norma Alvey, Carole Gard, Donna Kearney and the Rev. Ray Pinard.

KEVIN M. COX/The Daily News

Galveston Island Meals on Wheels has two big milestones to celebrate, so the annual Wine and Dine event April 25 at The Hotel Galvez & Spa will be extra festive.

“We’ve been tallying what we’ve done, and we served our millionth meal not long ago,” Meals on Wheels

President Donna Kearney said.

“Not only that, we’re also celebrating our 40th anniversary of bringing nutritious, hot meals to people who aren’t able to fix them for themselves. So, our Wine and Dine will be a double celebration.”

Delivering a million meals has required the efforts throughout the years of hundreds of volunteers.

Individuals, churches, clubs and businesses commit to delivering meals along a route covering one section of town and bring a hot meal to a portion of the more than 100 recipients of the program.

Galveston’s Meals on Wheels program began as an outreach program of the Junior League of Galveston County, later becoming an independent nonprofit organization devoted entirely to serving homebound individuals, primarily senior citizens, by providing nutritious meals.

While some aspects of the program have evolved during the years, one constant has been the involvement of the Rev. Ray Pinard, who has shepherded the growth of Meals on Wheels from a handful of clients to its current operation headquartered at Moody Methodist Church.

Although Meals on Wheels is not affiliated with the church or with any governmental agencies, the church provides space for preparing meals in a Health Department-approved kitchen and a central location for volunteers to pick up the meals for deliveries in all directions.

The dinner commemorating the delivery of a million meals has been created by someone who has cooked a million or two meals himself, The Galvez’s Executive Chef Michael Jacobson.

“Meals on Wheels is a great group doing an important service to the community, and I’m pleased to be working with them on their special event,” Jacobson said.

The Wine and Dine menu planned by Jacobson begins with an appetizer of mini chicken cordon bleu bites and proceeds to a choice of mahi mahi with fresh fruit salsa or petit filet, all accompanied by wines chosen for the occasion.

During the cocktail hour and dinner, music will be provided by the Henrietta Robinson Jazz Ensemble.

Some guests will have even more to celebrate by the end of the Wine and Dine evening, once the event’s raffle concludes and master of ceremonies Vandy Anderson announces the names of some lucky winners.

“Anyone can purchase tickets to the main raffle, but we’ll also have a surprise raffle and door prizes that are only for attendees,” Kearney said.

On the menu

 » Mini chicken cordon bleu bites

 » Mahi-mahi with fresh fruit salsa

 » Petit filet

 » Wines

Mini Chicken Cordon Blue Bites

9 ounces ground chicken

1⁄4 cup cooked, diced ham

1 egg

1⁄2 cup breadcrumbs

8 ounces Swiss cheese, cut into 1⁄2-inch cubes

Canola oil for pan-frying

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.

Combine the chicken, ham and egg in a large bowl until well blended. Gradually add the breadcrumbs until the mixture loses its stickiness and can easily be formed into balls.

Form the chicken mixture around the cheese cubes, forming 2-inch balls. Place on a plate.

Heat 11⁄2 inches of oil in a deep skillet to 350 degrees. Fry the balls until the outsides are golden brown, about 4 minutes. Drain on paper towels and place in baking dish.

Bake the balls in the preheated oven until cooked through and cheese is soft, about 20 minutes.

Cool briefly before serving.

(SOURCE: Recipe provided by Chef Michael Jacobson)

Fresh Fruit Salsa

MAKES: 5 cups

1 cup chopped peeled mango

1 cup diced honeydew

1 cup unsweetened pineapple chunks

1 cup chopped sweet red pepper

2 large kiwi fruit, peeled and chopped

1⁄2 cup chopped red onion

1⁄4 cup minced fresh cilantro

1 tablespoon cider vinegar

2 teaspoons lime juice

1 teaspoon chopped jalapeño pepper

1⁄2 teaspoon salt

1⁄4 teaspoon white pepper

Combine all ingredients in a large bowl. Refrigerate until serving.

(SOURCE: Recipe provided by Chef Michael Jacobson)

At a glance

WHAT: Wine and Dine

WHEN: April 25

WHO: Galveston Island Meals on Wheels

WHERE: The Hotel Galvez & Spa, 2024 Seawall Blvd., in Galveston

MC: Vandy Anderson

ENTERTAINMENT: Henrietta Robinson Jazz Ensemble

COST: $90 per person

CALL: Joy Incaprera, 409-744-5852 or 409-770-4588

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