Welcome, easy gourmet friends.
Wednesday is our day to share our food adventures, and we have some awesome sauces we want to give you today. But first I want to talk about something else.
It’s hard for me to know how to talk about this something else, because it involves Kim, my daughter and blog partner. She is an important part of our team, and I don’t want to diminish her. But facts are real, and we wish for everyone to accept and celebrate the facts.
Kim is on the autism spectrum, and lived over 23 years before we knew that. Well, we knew that certain things were different for her, but we didn’t have a name for it. That was difficult.
Then we got a name for it: high-functioning autism. That was difficult, too, to have a label attached after her name. We’re still working through it all. It will take awhile, for her, and for us.
I have often told Kim she is the strongest person I know. She has many things that break her down and discourage her and keep her from living her fullest dreams, but she always, always keeps trying.
One of the hardest things has been community. Finding her place, feeling her place, and knowing she has a place in community. She does have a place, but she doesn’t always feel it.
And what I want to tell you today will prove that the label she wears does not have to keep her from doing great things. She is creative and artistic, and the latest thing she created is a food business.
And this is from a girl who could hardly eat when she was young, then went through a phase of forcing herself to eat and became, well, a tad chunky.
Food and meals are often difficult for those on the autism spectrum. Meals have social rules; eat in an acceptable manner (and maybe food and you have sensory issues), and engage with those around the table at the same time. These rules often cause anxiety and stress, because social norms are hard to grasp for someone on the spectrum, and they often mess up and get called out, and food and meals become a thing to avoid. This article excerpt from Ambitious About Autism explains it well:
They also tend to be less influenced by social approval than most children (though they still very much need and want it), so eating with other people can just feel like more trouble than it’s worth:
all rules and little reward.
I’m pleased that Kim has kept a strong sense of the importance of food and the community it can provide. Her new venture is bringing her a form of community she hasn’t felt before. How sweet is it to get a text from someone you cooked for saying how much they enjoyed the food?
It brings a feeling of belonging she didn’t expect. And we all know how important that feeling is.
Having a sense of belonging is a common experience. Belonging means acceptance as a member or part. Such a simple word for a huge concept. A sense of belonging is a human need, just like the need for food and shelter. Feeling that you belong is most important in seeing value in life and in coping with intensely painful emotions. Some find belonging in a church, some with friends, some with family… Some struggle to find a sense of belonging and their loneliness is physically painful for them.
A sense of belonging to a greater community improves your motivation, health and happiness. When you see your connection to others, you know that all people struggle and have difficult times. You are not alone.
There is comfort in that knowledge.
Karen Hall, PhD
Breaking Bread With One Another
These words by Vanessa of At The Picket Fence blog express my thoughts so well.
I know that realistically, there are many… who are familiar with that deep longing for community. You know what it’s like to look on wistfully as people gather around someone in need or drop off vegetables on a neighbor’s doorstep. You wonder if anyone would come to your aid if you found yourself in need of care.
And to you I say, I get it. Truly I do. So, know this, I am praying for you. But I’m not praying in the way you think I might be praying. I’m not praying that community would just fall into your lap. Instead, I’m praying that you would be BOLD and BRAVE in your pursuit of community. That you wouldn’t get discouraged when you take the huge risk of extending yourself and the love and care you offer isn’t offered in return. That you would continue to try and engage and reach out. I pray that instead of simply waiting for community to come to you, you would go to it. That you would offer care and support to others and bring them into the fold.
I feel that Kim’s new idea is BOLD and BRAVE in pursuit of community. She is no longer waiting for the community to come to her, she is reaching out and offering care and support.
And every week she has enough orders for her casseroles to keep us cookin’ for a whole day, and sometimes more! (And here we want to say thank you to those who are blessing us in this way.)
The Awesome Sauces
Last week Kim’s Kitchen made Hashbrown Potato Casserole and Barbecue Country Style Spare Ribs. There were two sauces involved in this meat dish. First, the marinade before grilling, and then the barbecue sauce to slowly bake the goodness through and through the fall apart result.
I’m not going to give you the recipes in the bulk we prepared, as I’m sure you don’t intend to make Spare Ribs for 50 people. Here’s the sauce for 8 people…
First the marinade:
And the barbecue sauce:
Find the beautiful and practical Annie Recipe Album here. The album is perfect for organizing all your special family recipes. The matching pages, as seen above, are included with the purchase of our fill-it-yourself album. (The pages match the album, but you write your own recipes on them.)
Do you have some go-to awesome sauces?
We’d love to hear about them.
Or share food or community stories…