Today we’re going to do something a little different, because I’d love to hear from you on an important topic. We’ve had some great discussion on our Facebook page on this subject, and my readers over at Under the High Chair have shared their experiences, and I am now curious as to what my dear Simple Bites readers have to say.
Recently I’ve been thinking a lot about cooking for others and the meaning behind the action. I don’t mean carving roast beef and passing around popovers for dinner guests (although that also has its qualities), but hot, nourishing meals that are made with care and delivered to someone in need.
There’s a lot to be said for the benefits of good, home cooked food when you are emotionally and physically low on reserves. A friend of mine, Alice, recently wrote a moving post over at PBS Parents called Caring for Others. She shares firsthand how her family was recently touched during a particularly difficult time and had this to say about sympathy meals:
“It doesn’t take culinary know-how to bless others through food. It just takes the willingness to do it…Knowing and experiencing the love of others is the best medicine there is for broken hearts. Never underestimate the power of a home-cooked meal made with loving hands during times of crisis.”*
As someone who loves to cook and bake, I often have a pot pie, casserole or tin of cookies banging around in my trunk on its way to a friend’s house. I may not always have the right words to say, or faculties to make a difficult situation easier when a friend is in need, but I can prepare double when I make dinner and send some love over in the form of a hot meal.
Who might need a meal?
You don’t have to look very far to find a recipient. We all know people who are struggling, who have perhaps lost a loved one, or are fighting a long-term illness, or lost their job. The starving college student, the single mother, and pregnant friend on bed rest would all probably be blessed by your thoughtfulness as well.
They’re not just for people are going through a tough time, though; those who are celebrating can also benefit from a prepared meal. Don’t forget about sleep-deprived new parents, new homeowners, or honeymooners!
**UPDATE: A lot of excellent questions have been raised in the comments. These will be addressed in an upcoming post. Thank you for sharing and for asking questions!**
Q & A. Here’s what I want to know: Have you ever received a meal during a difficult time from a well-meaning friend? How did it make you feel? Have you ever brought a hot meal to someone in need? How was it received?
I’m curious to know if this happens regularly in your communities. Please share your thoughts and experiences in the comments, and feel free to list favorite dishes to give and receive.
I look forward to hearing if these not-so-random acts of kindness are still alive and well. Thanks for reading.
* Head HERE to read the entire post by Alice on Kitchen Explorers and get her recipe for Chicken Almond Rice Casserole.