We need to get back into the kitchen
Time is a very valuable commodity which none of us ever seem to have enough of. Thank goodness for all our modern conveniences and time-saving devices. They enable us (especially us busy moms and some dads) to run around all day like maniacs being the driver, grocery shopper, homework facilitator, negotiator, counsellor, mediator, snack offerer, dinner maker, cleaner, income earner and I am sure you could come up with a few more .
The reality is that because of the busy-ness of our lives there is always the temptation to opt for food items that are quick and easy to prepare and serve. What a bonus – I don’t have to actually make the meat balls myself, I just have to buy them cooked and ready-made (even though they are probably full of all sorts of nasties and then fried in trans fats). Think about breakfast cereals: open, pour, eat – cupboard to mouth in about 20 seconds flat (never mind that they are full of sugar, preservatives and colourants). Many of us believe that 2 minute noodles are the best thing since sliced bread (but have you ever actually read the nutrition labels of these wonder foods – quite scary?)
How much time are we actually spending in the kitchen, preparing nutritious, fresh and whole foods from scratch? What are we really feeding our family and is there room for improvement?
There are many many advantages to the plethora of convenience foods that the food industry has manufactured for us. But the more I read about healthy nutrition the more I realise that we are completely losing the plot. There are “modern” kids who wouldn’t even recognise a head of broccoli, aubergine or sweet potato if it hit them in the face. And if it wasn’t for aquariums would they think that fish were shaped like little rectangular strips with a batter coated skin?
So how can we find more time? Well, it is amazing how much more time I have in my week since ditching DSTV ! And now that the kids aren’t allowed to watch TV during the week either, I have been amazed at their ingenuity and creativity to find things to occupy themselves with. I love it when they sit at the kitchen counter and draw while I am preparing supper. I hold up the vegetables I am about to chop and they need to guess what it is. I also get them to close their eyes and smell the chopped herbs to see if they recognise the smell and can name the herb. My goal is to make the preparation of food from first principles something which is “normal and routine” in their lives.
I believe that there are a few things in life worth making time for. One of them is family and another one is your health. Without these two things, life is just not that much fun at all. Dig deep, be creative and I know you will find the time to “get back into the kitchen“.
Please comment and share your ideas.