Food & Drinkrecipes

Cooking at Angel Food East + My Family’s Ham Sauce Recipe

by Grace Bonney

Every Thursday for the past two years, Julia and I have woken up early to go cook with Angel Food East. Angel Food East is a non-profit hot meal program for people living with HIV, AIDS and other chronic illnesses in Ulster County, NY, where we live. The mornings we’ve spent in that small kitchen cooking for those in-need in our community have been the most meaningful of my life so far. I have learned so much about the importance of being of service and we have made two very important friends, Georgine and Diane, who have become like a second family to us. If you follow Julia and me on social media, you’ll no doubt have seen just how much we love and value our time with these wise and wonderful women. They have reminded me time and again of just how important it is to have friends from different generations and how much we can all learn from each other.

This past week, we had the pleasure of cooking a very special meal thanks to a generous donation from Burgers’ Smokehouse. They donated a huge shipment of ham, sides and glaze so we could prepare a delicious holiday meal for everyone. And the best part was that we got to document the day so everyone could see what an average day at Angel Food East is like.

Below you can catch a glimpse of our day cooking, meet sweet Diane, and get a recipe for what I believe is the best ham sauce recipe in the world — my great grandmother’s! If you’re looking to join or volunteer with a group like Angel Food East, click here to find a local food-based, non-profit group near you. xo, Grace

*Photos by Goor Studio

This post was sponsored by Burgers’ Smokehouse, a family-run company since 1927.  If you’d like to place an order from Burgers’ Smokehouse, you can use the code “DESIGN” to get 10% off of your order placed by December 6th. In addition to delicious hams, Burgers’ Smokehouse also offers a wide range of smoked meats, vegetable sides and desserts, all available for delivery right to your front door in time for the holidays

Grace’s Great-Grandma Henley’s Mustard Ham Sauce Recipe:


  • 1 cup sugar
  • 1 egg
  • 1 Tbsp yellow mustard powder
  • 1/4 cup white wine vinegar


In a small saucepan over medium heat, combine the sugar, egg, mustard powder and vinegar and whisk together. Bring to a boil, whisking constantly, and boil until thick and glossy, about 3 minutes. Serve with ham and biscuits! (For a great biscuit recipe, check out Small VictoriesEverything Biscuits, our family’s favorite). 

Images above: prepping local broccoli donations and cracking jokes with Diane.

Images above: Portioning the ham donation from Burgers’ Smokehouse and combining it with broccoli and sweet potatoes for our holiday meal delivery. 

Images above: One of my favorite people (Diane) and one of my favorite places (Angel Food East). 

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  • It was so inspiring to be at Angel Food East on this day to see such a fabulous group of folks coming together to help their community!

  • Dear Grace, I have followed Design Sponge for years, I am always delighted to see your smiling face. In todays article you beamed pure joy. I truly felt the happiness you were feeling. Thank you for making my day.
    Hugs and smiles, Reva