SONY DSCThis picture is a meal Dee made for me long time ago. Gastrofork has its roots in cooking and our family. In the days where counting calories is the norm, I wish counting our blessings were more mainstream. I think food is an expression of love and care. Soup when we’re sick, to big celebrations where our family spends lavishly on food and wine.

I come to this topic, post love week. Only because my partner and I are both down with the flu. I find we both try to make each other meals to help us through the slog. And even preparing food for myself, I’d like to eat the healthiest things possible while sick. I’ve gotten my ability to eat solids. I love avocados and toast in the morning. I love eating muesli and vanilla yogurt. I make us both chicken soup from scratch. I try to buy as many non-caffeinated teas that we can sip when our throats are scratchy. When my partner is coughing pinecones in the night, I give him organic, lemon-honey lozenges so he can sleep peacefully.

When I come home, my dad makes sour soup with beef brisket in it. He always seems to make that when I’m sick. That or chicken broth macaroni soup with bits of soft ham in it. My sister makes me congee with chicken and ginger, an Asian dish I think is excellent while you’re sick cause it can be dressed up with anything. My dad cooks all those wonderful dishes in Filipino Cooking Made Easy, and it’s what I grew up with. This is what sustained me as a child and up to now. I’m still nostalgic whenever I have those dishes! Has anyone seen Ratatouille? The ending where the critic eats something familiar strikes a cord with me.

Please follow or use the #GF100Challenge hashtag to show ways cooking is part of your culture or your expression of love, joy, celebration or perseverance.