Middle-aged Tess and Hal meet as volunteers in a charity food kitchen. Some say a meal they concocted made people feel better so they must deal with those who, despite all their disclaimers, are determined to learn the secret “magic” ingredients. While dealing with that the pair find romance. More
Fifty-plus Tess Lanzetta and Hal Sitko, who have never met before, are separately recruited to help with the Prosperity Point Kitchen hot meal program. When they must prepare lunch for the delivered meals and the soup kitchen clients with only bits and pieces, most of them left-overs, Sitko and Lanzetta make what they call tail-end stew. They then help deliver that to the homebound clients in a livelier than usual manner. When some of the sickly clients report feeling better than they have for weeks after that meal there in talk of a miracle or a secret ingredient of potential great value to food companies despite the cooks’ insistence that the helpful effects were simply the result of a cheery presentation on a nice day and maybe some extra mild spices. A female TV news reporter with a grudge against Sitko claims on-air that Lanzetta and Sitko actually tried to poison the clients and only by accident made them feel good. Her claim is eventually shown to be the result of her misreading of some magazine articles so the station makes a nice donation to the food program to smooth that over. All the publicity due to the controversies makes the general public aware of the charity kitchen’s existence and problems resulting in volunteers and money coming their way. While dealing with all that, the pair find romance.