A sponsored post for We Are What We Eat.
The concept of sharing a meal goes way back, but how many times a week do ALL your family sit around the dinner table to eat a meal?
For us it’s around four times a week due to my husband’s long commute to work. During the week it’s usually just me and the kids, but he tries to be home at least one week night and takes over the cooking on weekends.
According to a study out of Belgium, sharing food, as opposed to just eating food together, promotes altruism and pro-social behaviour, and let’s be honest it’s quite a nice way to catch up with your loved ones’ day and reconnect a little.
We go around the table and do “3 things I’m grateful for today” and occasionally also “something awesome that happened today”… if you have been following the progression of our Kid’s Gratitude Journals over at Me Inc, you will see where we got the inspiration. 😉
A fellow blogger, Modern Mum, was talking about this the other day too. She has added another question “Who did you help today?” and that all goes back to altruism. It’s such a positive thing we can teach our kids… the simple act of helping someone else, and that the momentum of that, the ‘chaos effect’ will make a bigger impact somewhere, somehow?
One of our favourite sharing style meals is burritos and it has accidentally become our regular Monday meal. There are tears from my youngest if we don’t have “rollies” on a Monday! I love the fact that everyone can serve themselves too, so everyone gets what they want, it’s quick and easy to prepare, and it’s a great way to get the kids to eat a good variety of veg.
A couple of years ago I made a conscious effort to eat less processed food, typically known as “clean eating’. That means food that has had minimal interference, no chemical additives, lots of whole foods. But it wasn’t a big leap for us, as my husband is an ecologist and he has very strong beliefs on how we should eat, in order to make minimal impact on the environment. He has been vegetarian for almost 19 years because of the effects intensive agriculture has on the environment around the world.
We also try to grow a lot of our own veges, sometimes unsuccessfully (!) and we always try to buy fruit and veg that is in season, or at least that hasn’t been flown in from across the globe, and with no unneccesary packaging.
At first I thought it would be hard, but in reality, like anything that comes with practice, it soon became my norm. I’m a busy Mum running three businesses (how did that happen) and a home with two boys who like different foods, a vegetarian husband, five chooks, a cat who needs daily medication and me… I don’t have the time or the inclination to pour over recipe books and cook three different meals every night.
I very rarely follow a recipe exactly (unless I’m making a cake), it’s more a what’s in the fridge/pantry that I can substitute kind of thing and I usually do variations of the same meal so everyone is happy. So I DO love using foodie sites for inspiration, but it has to be quick, it has to be easy and it has to be REAL food.
That’s why burritos or tacos are a real hit in our house, everything in a separate bowl to pick and mix, plus I secretly think everyone likes to feel like they are in control! It is also perfect for when you have visitors to dinner.
Our selection looks something like this:
Meat option: either chicken & corn mix or bacon & corn
Vege option: quinoa & beans or vege chili or saute veg & black beans
Other: grated carrot, lettuce, baby spinach, grated cheese, chopped fresh tomato, spring onion, avocado … whatever is available.
All arranged on tortillas and topped off with some plain or greek yoghurt.
Does that sound complicated? It really isn’t as the veg options are all in the pot meals and even quicker if you just have a basic chicken and corn mix. It usually takes me 30 mins from start to finish and little to no brain power!
If you need more guidance check out this quick 30 min recipe Tacos for the Amigos from Annabel Langbein, and the following video…
*This post has been sponsored by We Are What We Eat, but all thoughts and opinions are my own.