Hammonton Rotary at the St. Vincent De Paul Food Pantry
The Hammonton Rotary Club is looking for your recipes that would be nutritious and make the best use of the food items typically distributed by the  St. Vincent De Paul Food Pantry. Pictured from left are members Bob Landolfi, Clarence Mattiolli, Mike Hitman, James FitzPatrick, Sharon Bertino, Jerry Daunoras, President Frank Bartolone and newest member Rob DeRose.  The Hammonton Rotary Club has been working at the food pantry one night every month packaging food for the needy for the last two years.

Hammonton Rotary

seeks recipes

to feed the poor

The Rotary Club of Hammonton is sponsoring a recipe contest aimed at identifying recipes that would be both nutritious and make best use of the food items that are typically distributed by the St. Vincent de Paul food pantry. 

The first place-winner will receive a $50 cash prize with two $25 prizes going to the second-place winners.  In order to be eligible for the prize, the person submitting a recipe must agree to its publication for distribution to food pantry patrons. 

The contest is part of a project aimed at providing nutrition information to food pantry patrons to enable them to get maximum benefit from the food that they receive. The food pantry tries to provide its patrons with a nutritionally balanced diet to the best of its ability, working within the constraints of the food that is available for distribution. 

Many of the pantry’s patrons have limited cooking facilities and are not well versed in the subject of nutrition.  A large number are recent arrivals to the United States and are not familiar with a lot of the food that we use here. 

The project will provide the patrons with a monthly publication containing information that would help them to make the best use of the type of food items that are typically distributed by the pantry.  The publication will include recipes that could be prepared using food pantry items with a minimum number of ingredients that the patron would have to purchase from the store.  The handout will be bilingual to accommodate the large percentage of patrons who speak little or no English. 

The items normally distributed by the pantry include:

Ground beef, turkey

Whole chicken (frozen)

Sausage patties

Canned or frozen vegetables

Dried beans

Canned or dried soup



Tomato sauce

Breakfast cereal – cold


Canned fruit

Fruit juice

Canned tuna

Peanut butter

Powdered milk 

Entries are to be mailed, along with a signed statement agreeing to the publication of the recipe, to Rotary Club of Hammonton, c/o Hugh LaMonaca, 40 N. Liberty St.  Hammonton, NJ 08037, no later than Feb. 15, 2010.  The winner will be announced on Feb. 25, 2010. 

Criteria for judging are: 

1.) the nutritional value of the recipe 

2.) maximum use of the food items that the pantry normally distributes with a minimum amount of expensive ingredients to be purchased in the store. 

Recipes should also show where ingredients can be substituted with other items in order to give the user as much flexibility as possible in using what is available. 

For the past year the Rotary Club has undertaken a service project whereby the members volunteer one evening a month helping to distribute food at the St. Vincent de Paul Food Pantry in Hammonton.  The food pantry is operated by the St. Vincent de Paul Society of St. Joseph Church and currently provides food for more than 1,000 people per month. The Rotary Club has recently been awarded a Rotary District grant which it intends to use to provide new services to the food pantry.  

In addition to the nutrition information project, the grant money will be used to fund the Feeding Infants and Toddlers (FIT) program that will provide the food pantry with funding to purchase infant formula, baby food and diapers. These items are not available to the pantry through the USDA Emergency Food Assistance Program, state food programs and community food banks.  The items are expensive and almost never go on sale.  Consequently, the food pantry cannot afford to stock them. 

The club plans to match the grant money with proceeds from its annual golf tournament, which is held in May, to enable the pantry to extend the FIT program through calendar year 2010.

Email questions to hammontonrotary@gmail.com, subject line “recipe contest.”


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