Wednesday, April 14, 2010

Home Made Meals, Love and Dirt

Last week Dr. Eades had a wonderful post. As always, it was straightforward, full of information and entertaining. I want to add one small word to the article; love. What struck me as I re-read the post was this:
"The only way you maintain control is if you do the cooking yourself. Plus, you’ll save a lot of money because it’s almost always less expensive to prepare it yourself. One of the best things you can do for your health (and your pocketbook) is to spend more time in your own kitchen"

We often forget this as we get caught up in our lifestyles of convenience. As I was rushing home to my kids yesterday, I stopped at the supermarket and picked up some ground meat, butter and cucumber.
Short on time, I looked at all the other options and almost gave in to some "all natural organic chicken nuggets and frozen meatballs" I even considered the "organic pizza". I was short on time, had to cook quickly, had to bring my oldest daughter to a study group, you know...
All the above pre-made items cost around $9 dollars. The meat I bought was $5. (not grass fed, but hormone and antibiotic free).
Came home, kissed the kids and started cooking. I realized in the middle of talking to all of them while cooking, that they were closely watching me. When they saw what I was making, I got cheers all around that said, "yay...home made meatballs".

It made me happy that they like "home made" better then "freezer bag".
What also struck me was the fact that the 30-40 minutes of hanging out in the kitchen before dinner, and talking to each other about our day, is a HUGE part of a very "grounding/calming" routine. When you toss the nuggets in the oven, that time is missing and everyone seems to scatter about to go do their own thing. The more I thought about this, the more I realised that it was the same for me growing up. I would sit on the counter and talk to my mom, while she prepped and cooked dinner. The next thought that then BLEW me away was the fact that by cooking...we literally infuse our food with love and good intentions. I think that this love/intention in some way makes our food even more nutritious and for sure more satisfying. I've read about this before, but I felt that thought last night.
Mumbo jumbo? What do you think?

You just can't find produce like this at the supermarket. It's too dirty ;-)

These scallions/green onions that I buy at the farmers market, are locally and organically grown.
You wouldn't believe the way these taste. See all the nice DIRT still stuck in them. Yes, they don't come in a handy dandy plastic baggy, nor have they had a quick little acid wash like the ones in the supermarket...but this is what REAL FOOD is supposed to look like. It takes a few extra minutes, to get these ready for your salad or cooking, but it's worth the extra time. I've come to realize that I realy enjoy that time cleaning and handling the food. Peeling garlic is very calming for me, so I don't buy the big plastic jar with pre-peeled garlic cloves.

Dr.Eades is spot on, make your own food most of the time. It will save you money and your health. 


Anonymous said...

I absolutely LOVE this post!!! You are right on and it made me want to rush home and cook my own dinner tonight!! As a working single mom the idea of nuggets and pizza is so tempting. But the image of spending time cooking in the kitchen with kids around, far outways the ease of preheat and walk away. ;-) Thanks for sharing!!

AT22 said...

I totally agree. My husband and I often spend quality time chatting while I'm cooking - instead of being zombies in front of the TV.

Being without a kitchen right now -- waiting for a new one to be built...feels like forever and still months to go! -- has made me realize how much I really miss it and am trying to tell myself never to begrudge cooking fresh, healthy meals. I can't wait to get back in there and COOK!

Primal Mama said...

This is a great post. I know so many, many people that would benefit from reading it.

The time excuse only goes so far. Everyone is super busy nowadays. In my opinion, it's something you have to MAKE time for.

Peter said...

Marc, great post. I couldn't agree more that the cooking and talking over the day and then enjoying the food together is one of the best ways to connect with family at the end of a long day.
Btw, what is your recipe for meatballs? I've been trying but haven't found a good substitute for bread crumbs. Thanks.

Annie said...

I don't think it's mumbo jumbo at all! I think you've stumbled onto something that would do us all some good to recognize. I could with my kids twice a week and it's wonderful. And I remember chatting up my mom while we did dishes or made galumpkis...thanks for the reminder.

LivingPrimal said...

This post is so spot on. Food tastes better when it's homemade with love. While I don't have kids to cook for, I take pride in cooking for my friends, family and my pets. If I'm making meatballs, the dog knows he's getting some, and I know there is nothing harmful in them. Better than any of those storebought "treats" filled with soy, and "flavors."

Peter -- It is super easy to make meatballs. I use one pound ground beef, one pound either pork sausage or ground pork, an egg to bind it (all grass-fed, pastured, straight from the farm), and some shredded zucchini to add moisture. Season as you like and fry them up in some bacon grease. Delish!!!

Jay C said...

One of your better posts.
If you don't mind, I'm going to cross post on my blog and FB page.

Natalie said...

YOU, sir, are one fantastic Dad. Well said and well done!!!!!

Megan said...

As always, an excellent post! Thank you for sharing =)

Anonymous said...

Yes it looks great. I never really bonded with my Mum as she cooked but it would have been great if that had of happened. I know what you mean about temptation. I was at the supermarket yesterday and it was going to be so easy to buy some grain fed beef. But I didn't I stuck to seafood.

Marc said...

My pleasure and good luck with the home cooking. I know it's not always easy.

My sis went through 6 months of renovation...I don't know how she did it. Good luck..the end result will be well worth the wait and aggrevation I'm sure.

Primal mama!!!
Hey thanks for the feedback!!
You're so right!! it's a HAVE to.
How are you? How's Spain and how's your journey going? Summer is around the corner, must be a beautiful time of year for you.

I actually make my meatballs with just ground beef mostly (other times I will mix in some pork or sausage). Pound of meat, one egg, a little bit of almond flour, salt pepper, garlic powder and oregano. This is just the basic variety but my kids love it. I brown them in butter, then add some water and cover with lid. When done, take them out and reduce the liquid when reduced add a splash of heavy cream, let that all simmer down a bit and then add the meatballs back in to coat. Simple easy and tasty! Thanks for visiting!

Agreed. It's really true. What are galumpkis?
Thanks for visiting.

Great suggestion on the zucchini!!!!!

Absolutely. Thanks for the link love!!! Hope all is well Jay.

awww ;-) Blushing. Thank you. I do love my kidlets a lot!! ;-)

Thanks so much!!! How are you making out?

Been enjoying your seafood posts.!! Remember my advice on the Cabot trail...unbelievable trip you MUST make. Not that I'm forcing you or anything ;-)


Annie said...

Galumpkis are stuffed cabbage rolls. I'm not sure what part of Eastern Europe our family version is from (possibly Lithuania) but there are versions of meat stuffed leaves all over the place in that part of the world! I have a friend from Palestine who makes suffed grape leaves...same idea. I'll write the recipe on my site and link it soon. thanks for asking!

Annie said...

as promised...

Naomi said...

Great post :) Someday I hope to be chatting with my kids while preparing good food.
I've actually started a little vegetable garden myself, my little nephew loves it! I'm happy that he can see where food comes from.

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