Recipes from Melissa d’Arabian from Chicago Bread Art Event

Last week I was invited by Mom Bloggers Club to attend the Bread Art Project event in Chicago co-hosted by the Grain Foods Foundation and Share Our Strength(the leading national organization working to end childhood hunger by 2015) and Food Network host Melissa d’Arabian . What a lovely event it was!


Held at the Sprouts Academy Preschool, the Grain Foods Foundation and Share Our Strength talked about the disturbing numbers of children who go hungry every day. Nearly 17 million children (that is one in four people) struggle with hunger. As much as we hear about childhood hunger, it just doesn’t make sense to me that children in the United States should be hungry. We’re the wealthiest country in the world. No child should go without food!

While tackling childhood hunger can seem like a daunting task, there is something you and I can do to help. Thanks to the Grain Foods Foundation’s Bread Art Project you can help feed hungry children by going to the site and simply making a piece of bread art.

Now through June 30, 2010, every time you personalize a piece of digital bread, the Grain Foods Foundation will donate $1 to Share Our Strength.

Here’s a piece I made.

Easy, Low-Cost Recipes from Melissa d’Arabian

Weekday Crisper Drawer Penne Pasta
Recipe developed by Melissa d’Arabian for the Grain Foods Foundation
8 ounces dried penne pasta
3 T olive oil
1 slice bacon, cut into matchsticks across the shorter length of the strip
1 onion, thinly sliced
2 carrots, grated
1 zucchini, grated
1 t dried thyme
2 cloves garlic, minced
2 cups fresh spinach
¼ cup grated parmesan
2 T bread crumbs
Salt and pepper
In a large sauté pan, cook bacon in olive oil until almost crisp, about five minutes. Add onion and
cook until tender and translucent. Add the remaining vegetables and cook until tender, about five
minutes. Add garlic and cook until fragrant.
Meanwhile, cook penne according to package directions, salting the water liberally. One minute
before the pasta cooking time is done, add raw spinach to the pasta water and cook with the
pasta for the final minutes. Remove ¾ cup of pasta water just before draining and set aside.
Drain pasta and spinach and toss in pan with vegetables. Add pasta water as necessary to coat
pasta so it doesn’t stick. In a small bowl, mix bread crumbs and parmesan, and sprinkle on top of
pasta to serve.

White Bean Bruschetta
Recipe developed by Melissa d’Arabian for the Grain Foods Foundation
1 baguette, sliced thinly along the bias
¼ cup olive oil, divided
2 T unsalted butter, divided
½ white onion, chopped
3 cloves garlic, minced
1 t dried basil
1 t dried oregano
¾ cup canned navy beans, rinsed and drained
2 tomatoes, cored and cubed
2 T balsamic vinegar
Kosher salt and pepper
Olive oil for drizzling
For the bread, slice the baguette on the diagonal into thin slices (about 12 for a baguette). In a
large sauté pan, heat 1 T of the olive oil and 1 T of the unsalted butter on medium heat. Place
the bread slices in the pan and cook on medium high heat until sizzling and golden. Just before
flipping the bread, add an additional tablespoon of olive oil and butter to the pan. Flip the bread
and cook second side until golden.
For the topping, cook the onions and 2 T of the olive oil over medium heat in a medium sauté pan
until the onions are very soft, about 7 minutes. Add the garlic, basil and oregano and cook
another minute or two, until fragrant. Add the beans and continue cooking for another five
minutes on low heat and season with salt and pepper. Add the tomatoes and turn off the heat,
allowing tomatoes just to take on the warmth of the pan without cooking. Drizzle the balsamic
vinegar into the pan and gently stir.
To serve, scoop heaping spoonfuls of the tomato-bean mixture onto the grilled bread, sprinkle
with kosher salt, and drizzle with additional olive oil.

For more budget-friendly recipes and video tips on saving at the supermarket, see Ten Dollar Dinners with Melissa d’Arabian.

About Share Our Strength

Share Our Strength® is the leading national organization working to make sure no kid in America grows up hungry. By weaving together a net of community groups, activists and food programs, Share

Our Strength catches children at risk of hunger and ensures they have nutritious food where they live, learn and play.

Working closely with the culinary industry, Share Our Strength creates engaging, pioneering programs like Taste of the Nation®, the nation’s premier culinary benefit; the Great American Bake Sale®, a national grassroots effort; A Tasteful Pursuit®, a touring dinner series; the Great American Dine Out®, a week-long program involving thousands of restaurants nationwide; and Operation Frontline®, a cooking-based nutrition education program.

Through these programs, Share Our Strength raises funds to support No Kid Hungry™, a national campaign to end childhood hunger in America by 2015. Visit for more information.

About the Grain Foods Foundation

The Grain Foods Foundation, a joint venture of members of the milling, baking and allied

industries formed in 2004, is dedicated to advancing the public’s understanding  of the beneficial role grain-based foods play in the human diet.

Directed by a board of trustees, funding for the Foundation is provided through voluntary donations from private grain-based food companies and is supplemented by industry associations. For more information about the Grain Foods Foundation, visit, or find GoWithTheGrain on Facebook, Twitter and Flickr.

Don’t forget to take a minute to decorate a piece of bread at the Bread Art Project: the Grain Foods Foundation will donate $1 to fight childhood hunger every time you do!