Where can you get a good home cooked meal these days without setting foot in the kitchen? Kelly DeLaire, owner of Food Simply Fresh, is happy to make it for you. You can order home cooked meals for delivery or pickup and enjoy locally grown, organic fruits, vegetables and meat.
The Garner resident has always enjoyed cooking. As the oldest girl in a family of six, she learned to cook at home. Her family moved to different parts of the country and everywhere they moved, Kelly learned to cook the local cuisine.
“I would rather shop for food than clothes any day,” Kelly said.
Until last August, she enjoyed cooking for family and friends. Kelly’s mother developed Alzheimer’s Disease. Even though her mother lives in an assisted living home, Kelly needed to leave her job as a medical technician to spend more time with her. By creating Food Simply Fresh, Kelly was able to combine her passion for cooking with a flexible schedule to help her family.
“My mom likes to cook. On her good days, she helps me in the kitchen,” Kelly said. They spent Mother’s Day cooking and enjoying each other’s company. Family is important to Kelly. She said her business wouldn’t be possible without the help of her son Shanen and her partner, Sherri Scott. Sherri is also a local busniess owner. She owns ProTech Remodeling.
For now, Food Simply Fresh meals come from Kelly’s kitchen at home, but she is looking for a bigger kitchen that will accommodate her growing business. She said she wanted to create healthy meals that everyone can enjoy. The prices are kept low enough that most people could afford them. Meals run between $8 and $9 each, 10 meals for $85.
It is also important to her to make meals from locally grown food. She gets all of her produce from local farms like Hilltop Farm in Willow Spring that grows organic fruits and vegetables, and her meat from Wilkerson Farm on Panther Lake Road in Willow Spring.
We have more local options than we realize for organic foods. “I found Hilltop Farm when I was looking for a place to board my horse,” Kelly said. “It’s eight miles from my house and I didn’t know it was there.”
She said, “That’s what it’s all about, helping each other. Our communities need to be able to support themselves.”
While she agrees that organically grown food can be more expensive than the more processed food in the grocery stores, she said it is worth it. “People want to be healthier,” she said. Kelly believes that if people demand food that is better for them, the companies producing processed food will respond. “It’s about educating and demanding changes,” she said.
Food simply Fresh offers about 15 menus that rotate. Breakfast, lunch and dinner are available. Clients can pick up their meals at no extra cost or have them delivered at their homes for a $5 fee. Meals are ready twice a week. Kelly said that she has regular clients and she has orders from people who want to provide a gift for someone who has been busy or ill. Gift certificates are also available.
Although the food is organic and healthy, that doesn’t mean that it’s not tasty. “I use locally made sausage and make multigrain biscuits with gravy,” she said. Some of her other dishes include chicken pastry, enchiladas, lasagna and Asian dishes. There is a wide variety of ethnic and regional foods. Her meals are not prepared with food allergies in mind.
She will make vegetarian dishes to order, but she said she always asks people about their vegetarian diet. “You want to be responsible when trying to be vegetarian to get enough protein. If you are eliminating foods, you need to know how to replace them,” she said.
Kelly cooks what is in season. Right now there are a lot of greens and broccoli. “I’m busy freezing strawberries so that I can make strawberry salsa in the winter,” she said.
To find out more about Food Simply Fresh, find them on Facebook or go to their web site at www.foodsimplyfresh.com. Orders must be made by Thursday at 8 a.m. for the following week. Call 919-868-5340 or order online.