I’m taking a Whole Food Workshop again this year, from the same lovely instructor Heather Bruggeman. She keeps a fantastic blog at “Beauty that moves“. Check out her thoughts if you are looking for inspiration.
One of the tasks in the first week was to write about my food philosophy. I had just finished my annual family ski week, and my thoughts on skiing and cooking easily came together. Strange how that sometimes happens.
Preparing food for my family is like skiing. I enjoy it, but it is tough going, leaves me exhausted, other people think I do it effortlessly. There is a peaceful feeling to be out in the snow and smell the clean air, same as my lovely kitchen with sharp knives and wood cutting boards, the smell from the stove. I can sometimes find the elusive rhythm on the snow where carving a turn is the most wonderful feeling. Plating a recipe with the freshest, tastiest ingredients, evocative smell, beautiful color and balance is a most delightful experience, but elusive just the same. But practice does count in both areas. Honing skills, paying attention to details, incremental improvements. However, the most important part of either skiing or cooking is to have fun. If I fall down after attempting a difficult run, or produce a somewhat less than spectacular meal, it doesn’t matter, the process should be fun, introspective, full of learning.
As I prepare new and interesting recipes for my family, I get a curious mix of responses. I eliminate certain dishes straight away due to known food aversions. But that list is always evolving. It is curious to see my daughter eat something quite well because it has no meat in it and my husband is fighting the same thing down because of the texture. (And maybe no meat).
Recently, I served a breakfast of millet, which has virtually no taste, so the extra’s were a must. My son, who has no food “issues”, could barely choke it down because it was so bland. Really?
Chick pea veggie burgers were a general hit on Sunday night. But my son was worried we were not going back to beef burgers, ever.
My challenge is to view all of this as success. Getting my family involved in what they are eating is the point. Understanding what is on the plate and asking themselves questions about where it came from, is it good for them, how much should they eat of it? Remembering to tread softly in the heat of battle, which is what it feels like when new ideas are met with a challenge, is hard to do.
Other ideas on food philosophy: