Take them a meal

First off.. I am NOT tooting my own horn 📣. Let’s get that straight. But I got thinking this morning as I was prepping a meal for a new mom in our church. We’ve had a bit of a difficult time getting some people to sign up. I have heard “it’s not my gift“. “Oh, I’m not a good cook“. Well you know what? It’s not mine either… and I’m a nervous wreck when I cook for other people. I have about 3 meals I’m comfortable cooking for guests, anything else and I’m so not proficient.. but I’m enjoying trying, and hope to get better at it.

We use a really cool web program called takethemameal.com. https://takethemameal.com/

It’s a free web based program that 2 very smart women came up with. Families, friends, neighbours, churches.. you name it.. if you’re trying to set up meals for people who are in need, whether family illness, injury, or a new baby.. it’s a great way to organize. You get reminders when it’s the date you signed up for, a list of any allergies for your recipient, address, time to deliver etc.. everything where you can access it from anywhere. Meal ideas, and a lot of other helpful info all at your fingertips.

My “go to” meal is “Salad Bar in a box”. Above was today’s “box” about to be delivered. We have the wonderful blessing of many families in our church who have been having new miniature humans grace their homes in the last few years. I find with young families with toddlers and small children this is a great meal.. and it often gives more than one meal. Best part for me? NO COOKING!! Parents love that all the fresh fruit and veg are cut up for their wee ones.. and kids love unpacking the box.

The only thing I cook is the water to boil 🥚🥚🥚. I’ll give you this… It’s not a cheap meal. But it takes me less than an hour to wash, cut up, package the whole box/bag and clean up. And I’ve yet to find a family who hasn’t enjoyed it.

Today’s recipient family has a new born baby, 2 active young boys, a busy dad with his own business, and a mom recovering from childbirth. It’s a Celiac family, dairy free, with a few other interesting and challenging food allergies. I was so glad to have this in my arsenal!

I made sure my cutting area and knives were sterile and clean, no contact with any gluten, and set to work after cleaning the fruits and veg. Cut up cucumbers, grapes, red pepper, and apple. Blueberries, Grape tomatoes, organic black beans and chick peas, corn, pomegranate seeds, Certified gluten free cut up cooked sirloin and chicken (pre packaged) and cut boiled eggs. I found GF salad dressing, tortilla strips, and coconut smiles to round it out.

Typically I don’t give the full bags of extra stuff (seeds,nuts, salad toppers, dressing, I usually give small baggies of each to spread it out) but this is a special family who I want to have confidence that the foods haven’t been cross contaminated and show their GF certified sticker.

While I was at it, I did enough extra for us to enjoy for dinner tonite and lunch tomorrow. My Guillermo actually loves salad.. the more in it, the better.

I mean… who wouldn’t? Ours got cheese and bacon bits as well… mmmm.

Honest.. there IS quite a bit of lettuce under all that yumminess.. Not just that line leaf sticking out the top.

So.. no cooking, minimal clean up… and a great offering to a family in need.. you can do that, can’t you?

Published by billandamyskitchen

Bill (Guillermo 'cause he likes pretending he knows Spanish) and I (Amy) have been married since Sept 2005. We live in Southern Ontario, Canada - Niagara Peninsula in fact, smack dab between 2 of the Great Lakes. We love God, our family, our church family, and making each other laugh. (ergo the profile pic, he decided to make our photographer laugh by throwing a leg up on me just before the shutter clicked, which made ME laugh) When we married, I told Bill: "I don't know how to cook" but he had faith in me. So 15 years later, I'm still learning, and having fun. I've never (in my whole life) cooked a whole bird, chicken, turkey or otherwise. I've never roasted a beef, other than in a crockpot on low for 8 hrs. I like trying to find healthy & easy recipes and then I rarely follow them. I don't enjoy recipes that take hours or intricate steps. I have a special fondness for the Podleski sisters, writers/creators of the Looney Spoons, Crazy Plates and Yum/Yummer cookbooks. In 2018 we suddenly decided to rip our small house apart from stem to stern, moving out for 4.5 months while the house was demolished inside and out, and then rebuilt with an addition. If you go back in the archives to July-Dec 2018 you can follow that story. It's made our house open and so much more conducive to entertaining, small groups and large. It's given us the kitchen I've dreamed of to create and learn in. We feel incredibly blessed to be able to write about our journey, our faith in God and some fun recipes along the way. Thanks for joining us.

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    1. And you’re a FABULOUS cook!! I should have mentioned.. two of the reasons I’m a bit passionate about it.. #1. It gives me something tangible to do for those in need when I feel helpless.. and #2. I was once a recipient of some amazing gifts of meals after my appendix ordeal 8 yrs ago, and know personally what a blessing it is. One offering was a thermos of soup, another a plate of cut up fresh fruit… among lasagnas and casseroles that are also amazing.


  1. Amy, what a brilliant idea! And this Mama of a celiac boy’s heart is bursting with love for you for taking such good care of this family’s Celiac needs. So many people don’t get it. I love you!!!

    On Fri, Jan 18, 2019, 2:49 PM billandamyskitchen billandamyskitchen posted: “First off.. I am NOT tooting my own horn [image: > 📣]. Let’s get that straight. But I got thinking this morning as I was > prepping a meal for a new mom in our church. We’ve had a bit of a difficult > time getting some people to sign up. I have heard “it’s not my gi” >


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