The suggestion was that host families separate food and avoid paying for interns when going out. We tried this and were fairly good at sticking to the rules. However, food still presented some issues. Neither intern wanted the lunch at school, and though we were not really responsible for lunches, we did offer to let them use some of our food for this. We didn't keep track of lunch too much; one seemed to either not eat a whole lot or supplement her lunches with granola bars she bought, while the other bought salad for her main lunch meals.
Breakfast and dinner were provided by us, and Lisa made most of the meals, as usual. The intern was not much of a cook, though she did make the effort once. Generally, she helped Lisa when asked (like I do), but I do not get the impression that food preparation was any easier with the intern around. Keep in mind that we tend to make actual meals more often than a lot of families, so if you're used to pizzas and TV dinners, then all you do is buy a bigger pizza or make one more TV dinner.
Our second intern does not like Milwaukee water. While I can't imagine that, having lived here my entire life, I know people have their preferences. She offered to buy water. Lisa bought it at least once. We are not going to go broke purchasing drinking water, but it's just a reminder that you might run into philosophical differences when it comes to items that the intern needs or wants. For example, Lisa was surprised with how upset one of the other interns was about not having internet access at her first placement. We were never told it was expected of us to host their wireless needs, but the interns all seemed to agree with the assessment that it certainly was expected by them.
The German Immersion Foundation itself put us in the only really uncomfortable situations with the intern and food. We had two get-togethers at which we were expected to bring the intern or show up because we had an intern. The first meeting was at the Schwabenhof, which is basically reminiscent of the old VFW halls. I think the cole slaw was deep fried. The prices were too high and food was too bad for us to ever go there on our own, let alone treat someone else. We also went to Mama's or whatever Mama Mia's is now called. Pretty much the same: eat your cold pizza and lasagna, then pay a lot for the experience, and likely pay a second time for the intern (which we did). If we're going to get fatter and poorer taking someone out, we'd rather it be on our own terms. This is where the foundation really dropped the ball: pay for the interns to eat or don't have the parties. Really, this was probably the number one reason we decided not to host a second year right away, as it just left a deep-fried, luke-warm taste in our mouths.