I dug up this old post that never got completed, but I tweaked it and think it still reflects my thoughts on the subject. So without ado...
This weekend I had the privilege of serving a family in need by delivering some meals....and a refrigerator too. They have been living without a fridge at all for the last several months. Can you imagine? Anyhow, here are some ideas for taking your hospitality skills "on the road"..
Idea #1: Split up the work! I put my head together with another fabulous gal and we worked up a menu together, then divvied up the work. I made bread, she made soup. I made Easy Baked Ziti,. Oh, and some cupcakes too! This also works if you're joining someone for a spontaneous meal. My friend S and I have done this before....we both rummaged through our cabinets/fridge over the phone and talked about what we could contribute to a joint impromptu family meal. Don't shy away from the "last minute" get-together!
Idea #2: Add something unexpected or over-the-top! Not everyone has the time or inclination to cook or bake, but there are some great pre-made items that would add an extra dose of love. Make the family's favorite meal or dessert. Add some home-made milkshakes to the mix. Serve up some make-your-own pizzas or a do-it-yourself ice cream bar!
Idea #3: If you are bringing a meal for a family in need (circumstance, new baby, grieving, etc), consider bringing something that can be or already is frozen. Make sure you check with the family first, but many people deliver large meals with lots of left-overs and a meal that can be made later is usually greatly appreciated. I like to use disposable pans or even just a gallon sized ziploc bag. A batch of cookie dough that has been scooped into balls & frozen makes a tasty, thoughtful addition to a menu. Don't forget to include cooking/reheating instructions!
Idea #4: Use a cooler! This is fairly obvious to keep cool things cool, but it'll also keep hot things hot! Foil wrapped baked potatoes, loaves fresh from the bread machine, or that tasty casserole just out of the oven can all be kept HOT while in transit to your destination. This is especially helpful if you have other errands to run or if it will be a bit of time before you are able to deliver your meal.