There is no one that I miss more than my brother. We lost him two years ago. 

My brother gave me a lot of things—joy, hope, compassion, and a love for food. Honestly, I would not be the Spoonie writing this sentence if it wasn't for him. 

How it All Began

Like all American kids, my brother and I just loved Dairy Queen chocolate-dipped cones, Olive Garden breadsticks, and the lemonade at our local amusement park. 

When my brother and I were in grade school, we'd always read cookbooks together. One day, we were reading Betty Crocker Kids Cook!, and we stumbled across a recipe for a yogurt-based fruit dip. He told me to make it for his afterschool snack the next day, and this is pretty much where my passion for food began. I can taste a crunchy red delicious apple doused in vanilla yogurt with cinnamon and nutmeg as I write this sentence.

After that day, I got to trying almost all the recipes in the book.

"When Sarah Cooks, It's Special."

Sarah Arora

We grew up eating my mom's Indian food most evenings. However, on days that I wanted to cook dinner, my brother knew that he would get something different. His favorite cuisine was Spanish, in the form of tapas

Holidays were for the food. At Thanksgiving, guess who was always sitting at the head of the table, ready to eat both the turkey legs? I firmly believe that my brother enjoyed Thanksgiving more than his own birthday (sidenote: I always made Hershey's chocolate cake for his birthday). Every Thanksgiving day, I loved spending those hours in the kitchen and preparing about seven different dishes just to make his day. 

Sarah Arora

I am also the only one in the family who bakes, so that meant brownies, cookies, and cakes for my brother. I always gave him extra chocolate or an extra scoop of ice cream. I added sprinkles and whipped cream whenever he should have been making better choices that day. 

Hidden Healthiness 

I loved to treat my brother to sweet treats and fun meals, but I also had to be a responsible sister. He wasn't a big fan of vegetables, so I often had to sneak greens into his food.

I got him to eat salad by using a copycat recipe of cilantro lime dressing from our favorite restaurant (Wildfire in Chicago). Oftentimes, I snuck greens into mac and cheese by finely chopping kale and spinach. I also blended plenty of greens into his favorite berry smoothies. I have to admit, that was kinda mean, but it was out of love. 

The Present

My brother may not be here physically, but he's in my writing, recipes, photos, and everything else. Because he gave me my passion for food, I can honor his memory by teaching the world about food, visiting places he would have loved, and share a special story—our story.

This one's for you bro. Among an endless list, thanks for giving me my love for food. Rest easy, and I hope you're eating endless ice cream up there.