Images from Family Meal recipes.
Courtesy Family Meal

Cook These Recipes While Supporting New York City Restaurants

By Aileen Kwun
May 2, 2020
2 minute read

The ongoing Covid-19 closures have brought the unimaginable to so many local and small businesses across the country and around the world, and the restaurant industry has been among the hardest hit. With limited ways to contribute—and a growing list of restaurants that are sorely missed and in need of funds—two food-loving designers in New York are paying it forward with Family Meal, a site and Instagram account of recipe cards featuring dishes from their favorite local restaurants. All are available for download, with suggested donations. Among the delectable recipes, which will continue to be rolled out every few weeks, are bagna cauda from Popina, challah from The Lighthouse, and lou rou fan from Win Son.

“We were heartbroken to see all our favorite restaurants close and start to post employee funds,” say Grace Robinson-Leo and Rob Matthews, co-founders of the New York design studio Decade, which launched the project last month, as it became clear that the city would need to endure prolonged social distancing measures. “The goal is really just to raise awareness and help out. Every part of this project has been done pro bono, and we hope it gets people—both in and outside of the restaurant industry, and inside and outside of New York—excited to participate, share, and donate.” Pairing iconic dishes with a rotating cast of top-notch illustrators and studios—such as Tim Lahan, Catalogue, and Pete Gamlen—Family Meal serves a welcome dose of optimism, joy, and purpose to home cookery.

On this front, if you haven’t already done so, we highly recommend reading this beautifully written essay in The New York Times Magazine by Gabrielle Hamilton of Prune, which renders, in heartbreaking and melancholic, yet still somehow hopeful and humorous, detail, the challenges of running a restaurant even before the pandemic hit.