Monday, December 10, 2007

Figuring out family dinners, again!

If you've read my writings for any length of time, you know that a recurring question is "what the heck am I going to make for dinner?" The problem is not a lack of talent (I'm actually a good cook), nor a lack of interest. Rather it's a lack of -- well, here's the problem. With one vegetarian (me), one who gets hungry early (Tucker), one whose schedule is unpredictable all the time (Tim) and one who's never home (Austin) and needs transportation at dinnertime (me as transportation), it's just tough to make it all come together.

But I've had two successes -- actually three -- in a row. Saturday Tim and I were heading to a Christmas party, but I cooked up some pasta and tossed it with lemon artichoke pesto (thanks Trader Joe's!) which everyone loved. After snowboarding I used one of Tracy's soup ideas and put together a Mexican inspired vegetarian concoction, which the whole family loved. And tonight I made the BEST chicken pot pie (of course it's wonderful -- it's made with fresh chicken, half and half, tons of veggies, and is topped with homemade biscuits), and a big fluffy salad. I enjoyed the salad while the guys enjoyed the pot pie.

So I'm thinking that maybe the answer is vegetarian meals half of the time, and "regular" stuff the rest of the time. I honestly don't mind cooking things with meat, and this way some of the time we eat all the same, and other times I just eat the "side" stuff for my meal. I'll let you know how this works as time goes on.

2 comments:

Colette said...

I think that is a wonderful idea. It doesn't matter what you cook, as long as you are all together when you can be. You'll be surprised at how easy that will be for you. Heck, even when you cook your food, you can always throw on a chicken breast or steak for the rest of the family.

One more thing...they are lucky to even have a mom/wife who will actually cook them a hot meal. These days it seems like everyone does take-out or frozen dinner kind of stuff (yuck). Not many of us left I'm affraid ;)

Tracy said...

Leslie,

I ALWAYS, always have pre prepared poteins (meat), in the form of cooked chicken/turkey, ground beef, pork tenderloin, steak, etc... to add to vegggie meals...which all of my meals start out as...salads/pastas/soups/risottos, etc...

Another suggesstion...there's nothing wrong with cooking first thing in the morning...and always cooking twice as much, (no crime in eating the same thing twice! Sometimes you can tweak it a liitle to make it different, like adding chicken stock to a portion of pasta to make "noodle soup" and maybe 1/2 c. beans).

Even if you don't eat it twice in a row, you can freeze the second meal for a few days or a week later. I currently have servings of pot roast and tomatoes, pork roast and beans w/onions, lamb stew w/white beans, tons of turkey and veggie soup, (that I'll add black beans/pasta/rice/quinoa to)

You get the idea! Keep it up, it gets easier, and you'll feel better.

Just think...we're gorgeous AND we know how to cook!!!