It is pretty pathetic when your 14-year-old daughter makes better meals than you do. Maria has been in the kitchen since she was eight years old – making pancakes, frying eggs, and creating cupcakes.
Our family has been on a staple diet of random, minute-made dinners for months. Tacos, pork and potatoes, lean cuisines, crackers and cheese, and hot pockets.￼￼￼ Granted, the last couple of months have entailed Maria or Mario at practice until 7 or 8 PM￼ so it was hard to coordinate family dinners… But who am I kidding, we probably would’ve had a similar selection even if they didn’t have practices.￼ Neither Jon nor I have any desire to slave away in the kitchen after a long day at work so the microwave is our trusted companion.
Maria, on the other hand, quite enjoys alone-time in the kitchen. The thought of spending a couple of hours alone baking in the kitchen excites her. Trying out new foods and recipes does as well. Jon and I are all game for new recipes but it’s the time in the kitchen piece that kills any excitement.
Maria was obviously getting sick of lean cuisines because this weekend she tossed out the idea of her making a couple of meals a week. ￼￼She was diplomatic in her proposal – she stated she’d love to cook two meals and have Jon and I could cook two meals as well. She’s always up for getting everyone involved in the process so she asked Mario, Jon, and me to give her two recipes each and we would then vote on all of the recipes submitted. Maria sat us down in the living room on Sunday afternoon so that we could conduct the vote. ￼￼ Each of us ended up getting one of our meals selected.￼
Maria made￼ my selection on Monday night. Sloppy Joe sandwiches, baked potatoes and broccoli. Mario ate four sandwiches – that is unheard of for him. He had his friend Owen over that night and Owen devoured four as well. Maria felt on top of the world. On Tuesday, she made her selection. Paprika-baked chicken, parmesan cauliflower rice, peas and corn. Again, it did not disappoint. She and I loved it. Jon loved all but the cauliflower rice – he’s more inclined to have the real stuff. Mario, of course, had devoured food prior to dinner while over at his friend’s house but nibbled on some chicken and rice. Mario tends to shy away from anything too healthy….
I’m up tonight with Mario’s selection – spaghetti and meatballs. Yes, the meatballs will be purchased from the local pizza shoppe…. I readily admit to not having the cooking skills or patience of my part-Italian daughter.