Suzy and I were making meatballs together the other day, so while they baked we ate lunch together. We got into a pretty weighty discussion about the “family dinner” challenge and how each of us, even though we have quite a number of staples in our respective repertoires, are getting bored of the same old thing. But it’s not that simple to change, for a few reasons.
First, of all, we each need to cater to opinionated eaters with various food needs. I’ve got a teenage son with a newly installed orthodontic appliance that makes eating a challenge, so he needs soft and mushy foods; my other son inspects everything he eats with a magnifying glass looking for anything suspicious. Even my daughter, who will mostly eat anything, refuses to eat fish. And my husband, who has diabetes, needs a high protein, low carbohydrate diet.
Despite going into fall with ample stockpiles, there’s practically nothing left in my freezer from summer. I’m craving farm fresh fruits and vegetables and am getting pretty darn tired of what the grocery store claims is fresh.
Do I sound disgruntled?
So we started listing the winter meals that we do make: Skillet Asian chicken, meatballs, pasta with vegetables (aka “peek-a-boo pasta” in my house), marinated skirt or flank steak, empanadas, dumplings and burritos of course (but those are often used as after-school snacks in my house), soups, chili (we agreed we are so sick of chili!), pot pie, sausage, meatloaf. . ..while going through these dishes we realized that’s not so shabby a list!
But even so, we’re tired of serving our families the same old thing, which goes to show that everyone needs to spice things up a bit. After our brief visit cooking and eating lunch together, we decided a few things: First, we’ll continue our outings to various ethnic grocery stores, seeking inspiration and new flavors and second, we’ll make an effort to make one new meal each week together. We’ll call it Mom’s Meal Mission.
Our homework assignment is to write a wish list of meals each of us would like to make. Then, we’ll pick something from our list each week and make it together.
Would you help me with my list? What’s your favorite dinner? Something in your house that your family is bored and tired of may just become my family’s new favorite! Thanks for the help. Don’t be shy.