Butternut bisque sold at Milford bistro helps the homeless
The owners of Bobette’s Take Out again are warming hearts and helping the homeless this month through sale of their butternut bisque.
All through February, a hefty portion of the proceeds from each soup sold during what is known as “Butternut Buddy” month is being donated to Beth El Center, which provides shelter for the homeless and food for the hungry.
Gary Caulfield, who owns the bistro with his girlfriend of 44 years, Bobette Moore, said anyone can fall on hard times.
“I want to give back. … People have been very good to me,” Caulfield said of the month-long fundraiser. “ (Customers) can enjoy the soup and know they’re helping someone.”
Mayor Ben Blake, who gave a proclamation declaring February 2018 compassion and kindness month in Milford, made a Minute with the Mayor video with Caulfield to recognize the effort. Caulfield calls the month-long event “Soup for Compassion.”
“It’s a tasty way to support a good cause and as Buddha says, ‘a generous heart, kind speech, and a life of service and compassion are the things which renew humanity,’” Blake said.
Toni Dolan, executive director of Beth El, said the couple have been “generously giving” through the bisque for years.
“We are so appreciative of their efforts to provide nourishment to the community while supporting our programs,” Dolan said. “It has been wonderfully successful in assisting us in our efforts to end homelessness and hunger; due to support like theirs we have made great progress and will be able to continue towards this long-term goal.”
Caulfield has said most people are “a paycheck away” from being in need themselves.
The pair, in business for 29 years at 93 Boston Post Road, specializes in soups and also serves sandwiches, paninis and salads. Each day, they offer about 10 different soups and 20 sandwiches.
He said the bisque is selling well — many are motivated to choose it because of the helping component — but he said chicken noodle is a tough competitor this time of year because so many people want it to nurse colds or flu.
More than a decade ago, they began offering the butternut squash soup in February to benefit the shelter. Caulfield said it began after he approached then-Mayor James Richetelli looking for ways he and Moore could give back to the community.
The mayor told them Beth El was a cause close to his heart and referred them to Dolan, who embraced the butternut squash soup idea. The tasty bisque can be served pure or with brown sugar and walnut topping.
Caulfield said the month-long fundraiser has through the years netted anywhere from $800 to $1,200 for the center annually.
So many people have asked for their soup recipes that the pair have an e-cookbook, “The Bobette One Pot Soup Method,” that can be ordered on Amazon for $4.95. He said once the book is in the phone it can just be called up at the grocery store to list ingredients.
Bobette’s Take Out is open Monday through Friday from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. and Saturday from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. They deliver as far south as Bridgeport and as far north as Orange.