The Kitchen is going to be the life and soul of your hunting preparations. Not eating before going out on a quest is asking for failure! You naturally have 100 health and 100 stamina, but you can increase these to a maximum of 150 health and 150 stamina. You could do this using an Ancient Potion once you start the quest, but why do that when eating a meal gives the same effects without using your items?
As you progress through the solo and multiplayer campaign, you will unlock new ingredients . These are crucial in making recipes.
Talk to the Purr-prietress, the southern belle Felyne who will bring up your list of current ingredients. Put two together that the game lets you, and poof! A new meal will have been created from your "experimentations". This gets added to your meal list!
Before you embark on a quest, sit at the bench of any kitchen in any of the major hubs, and pick a meal. The Health and Stamina boost you receive will be displayed in the HUD as you’re selecting, alongside any food skills . These are skills that will only be activated during that one quest. If you faint, the skills and the food boosts will not be there unless you eat for the skill Felyne Foodie . All the food skills are formatted as "Felyne [random descriptive word]" and some, such as Felyne Insurance, are incredibly useful.
The food skills you have a chance of getting depend on the sauce you pick after selecting your favorite meal. Have fun perusing through the menu and watching your hunter eat!