What’s Cooking in Renata’s Kitchen this Week

Marissa and Momo Receive their Contactless Delivery from Renata’s Kitchen

Cooking for the COVID Crew

Renata’s Oven Baked Pasta

Renata’s Kitchen is thrilled to be delivering contactless meals to Chicago COVID nurses and their families this week. Marisa Stratelak works at RUSH Hospital. She’s a pescatarian, and eats dairy. Marisa’s partner, Momo Bouare, eats everything except for pork. Berlice is an omnivore who is very passionate about health and wellness. We chose these things from what was in abundance in our pantry:


Thank You to Marisa Stratelak at RUSH Hospital!
Berlice Menende-Chetgna works at Cook County Hospital on an All-COVID unit.

Feeling Restless?

Quit Your Wishin’ and Find Your Mission

Renata’s Top 10 Ways to Cure the COVID Crazies

  1. Spend 15 minutes on GoFundMe to find a project, passion, or payment you want to click and add to the basket. This one helps feed needy Elmhurst-Area Families.
  2. Pray for 3 people you don’t know or frequently pray for. When in doubt, pray for the Illinois foster kids who are now homeless because they have tested positive for Coronavirus, and their foster parents have died of Coronavirus. (Pray for their social workers, too.) 
  3. Write an inspirational note, prayer, or joke to a nurse and send it to me at renataskitchen@gmail.com. I will send it with a healthy meal to the Chicago-Area COVID nurses who are putting their lives at risk every day.(See Renata’s Kitchen Cooks for Chicago Nurses).
  4. Give a cash tip to your grocery store clerk. 
  5. Send a handwritten note to someone you love. 
  6. Save a life: Don’t congregate with your neighbors. Your happy hour might be an elderly person’s worst nightmare. 
  7. Save a life: Don’t cross state lines to your lake house if your non-home state has kindly requested you stay away until the “Stay in Place” order has been lifted. 
  8. Pay your cleaning crew, hairdresser, or any service person you can afford to pay, even if you do not plan on using them again.
  9. Google a local church and ask them how you can help. (Here’s my favorite!) Elmhurst Presbyterian Church. We worship online each Sunday, and you can find us on Facebook and Instagram, where we are devoted to helping support the most vulnerable members of our community. 
  10. Drop a bottle of hand sanitizer or a roll of toilet paper off at any neighbor’s house, who is a first responder. 

Please feel free to share this Mission Menu with anyone who could use a little inspiration to find something they are craving. Sometimes you don’t know how strong you are until you give away your surplus resources, and find yourself completely satisfied.


Any good nurse will tell you that you have to complete the course. I know we are in the first leg of this race, and everyone is starting to get a little COVID-CRAZY.

Hang in there, friends. Let’s eat well, sleep well, and try to stay out of trouble this week.

My favorite quote of the week has got to be from my 98-yr-old church buddy who I get to chat with twice a week for inspiration. This week she told me that for some reason whenever someone asked her mother how she was doing, her mom’s reply never varied.

“Pretty good for rotten.”

I don’t know why, but this absolutely cracks me UP! I think it perfectly encapsulates how easy it is to slouch down during this lengthy lockdown. And who knows, maybe your cranky comment will be fodder for some foolish blogger one day fifty years from now.

Ain’t nothing wrong with that.

Live to Love,



  1. Wonderful post, words, and actions! ??


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