In one clever article in a clever women’s magazine this was written: regular family meals do not allow children to grow up with blockheads.
These children having dinner with their parents is just some kind of miracle. Among them there are practically no juvenile offenders, drug addicts and alcoholics. They do not get depressed, receive quite decent marks and enter the university.
They find contact with their parents, and in old age they give them a glass of water and support them financially.
Not to mention the fact that they know which hand to hold the plug in.
High collars, barely audible rustle of footmen, eight courses of dishes and "kids-not-elbow-on-the-table" through clenched teeth — all this is already two hundred years old and has no right to exist.
But family dinners are still a delicate matter, and their organization must be approached responsibly.
Family — insidious. You can’t get enough of them, they are offended that you are always at work.
In order to successfully gather everyone together, you will have to accustom them to this — and to accustom yourself — literally from the very beginning.
When a child is only a year old, do not feed him bread — let him stay with his parents.
Of course, food for babies is prepared on the basis of slightly different principles than food for adults.
But if the parents make an effort at least once a week and prepare a dinner suitable for both them and their child, everyone’s health will only increase.
Already a two-year-old baby can fully participate in the dinner, where on the first — pumpkin soup, on the second — baked fish with vegetables and on the third — fruit dessert.
Just lay plenty of napkins where most of the child’s portion will fall, and don’t be nervous — you’ll be busy later in your man’s manners.
For now, let him enjoy the realization that he, as an adult, is eating the same thing as mom and dad.
At the age of five or six, the child is interested in eating everything — if he prepared it himself. My seven-year-old daughter, in principle, cool to fish, with each trip to the market requires you to buy trout, or whitefish, or mullet, or whatever, the main thing is "with nutrients" and scales.
My task is to "interneness" take out, find and demonstrate the heart, liver and spawn. And the young lady saved me from cleaning the fish a long time ago — she copes very well, wielding a huge knife at the same time.
Children are generally like that — if you trust them, they will not even think of cutting off their fingers or pouring over boiling water.
Teenagers are the worst in terms of family dinner. (However, they are from any point of view "worse".) They are always busy with some mysterious things, and even if they manage to plant them at a common table, it turns out that it is today and this is what they don’t want.
But adolescents make it clear that the concept of a three-course family dinner, which, wearing a lace aprons and not removing a stiletto heels, the mother carelessly prepares, is just as outdated as the story of lackeys and high collars.
The best food for a modern family dinner is one to which everyone is related. Not just good, but active. Here are dumplings, for example, the perfect choice.
A part of a family with skillful hands can mold them. Anyone with purchasing power brings meat to the house.
Brute masculine power, not located in sentiment, cuts onions and turns mince. The middle age rolls the dough and cuts a glass of a cup.
And maybe even mince lays out.
The smallest, as a rule, perfectly sprinkle all the flour. Even in hopeless cases, when the cook is absolutely sure that everyone else will spoil the fruits of many hours of work with just a touch of a spoon, there is a way out.
Let these others set the table.
Wine glasses are placed (even for juice), they remember which side of the knife to put a spoon in, and argue about who is sitting where.
Let them figure out how to decorate the table and what kind of music to put.
Let the salad be done in the end. I had a friend of the French, who for many years once a week made a salad "Nisoise".
There were three children in the family, plus parents and grandmother.
And everyone loved different things! "Nisoise" turned out to be a point of intersection of interests for them, although they made it specifically. It was taken a huge dish, which laid out lettuce.
They put slides on them: slightly boiled green beans; olives and olives; sliced boiled potatoes and eggs; slices of tuna in its own juice; anchovies; crackers; sliced ham in long slices; fresh champignons; gherkins and green onions, it seems.
Needless to say, everything has nothing to do with the classic recipe, starting with crackers? At the same time, in addition to the usual dressing (olive oil, red wine vinegar, salt and pepper), a bowl with melted cheese was placed on the table on a small heating stand …
By the end of dinner, the dish sparkled with perfect cleanliness, and everyone dispersed who were full and satisfied. The sacred duty of the head of the family, who had never participated in the preparation of the salad in connection with the permanent reading of Le Mond, was the loading of plates into the dishwasher.
Then his wife took them out — but that’s another story.
A great object to eat together is a bird.
She is very diverse and usually meets the needs of all family members. The sharing process always looks very touching. "Who is the wing?
And who loves our tails?" However, if there are more than two children in a family, you will have to arrange deliveries from the farm of three or four legged mutants.
Or bake two chicken at the same time — which, by the way, is no more difficult than cooking one.
It is possible to introduce an element of novelty not only alternating a bird — a goose, a duck, a turkey, a quail, but also changing their contents.
You just can not imagine how the taste of meat is transformed depending on the filling!
Try, for example, berry with pieces of polenta. Or entrails, lightly fried with onions and roots. Or quince with cranberries.
Or grapes with figs. Or apples with cabbage. Or couscous with mint and lemon … If you follow the Russian cultural and culinary tradition, during a family dinner in the house should smell like pies.
In addition, it is very easy to put the most different stuffing in the corners in the corners, if you suddenly can not converge on one.
Remember pie with meat, mushrooms and porridge at the same time?
You can contrive and even sweet with salty to combine.
For example, from one side a chicken, from another — rice with dried fruits.
Here is a riddle: for some reason, earlier, when you had to start the dough yourself, were the pies cooked more often?
And now, it would seem, I went to the store, bought the frozen one and go ahead. But not because.
The mentality has changed, or what?
Let’s change it back.
The smell of cake is the best aromatherapy in the world.
He says that everything in the world is good and reliable, the house is warm and cozy, you are loved and adored.
Otherwise, would you be messing with dough?
If you do not stop arguing about what delicacy to cook, do this. Take a few leaves and write on them the names of those dishes that your family members love most.
Roll it up and put it in a jug.
And every time when the moment of choice comes, let the youngest close his eyes and get out of the jug "menu".
So be honest.
Another good trick is to cook dinners geographically. Let the children make a list of countries, and you attend to the selection of recipes.
Believe me, in every national cuisine there are a couple of dishes that are easy to prepare.
In Italian — a lot of options for pizza and pasta, which you have not tried. In Mexican — tacos and tortillas with fillings.
In English — meat pies and puddings. In Swedish — Carlsonian meatballs. In Chinese — the same dumplings and cookies with notes.
In Japanese — sushi and rolls (children love to do them!). And in general, French cuisine can be stretched for a couple of months … If you decide to introduce (or support) the practice of family dinners, you can make another heroic effort.
Get a family cookbook. Record the recipes of all the dishes that you cook, and then, at the end of the month, choose and put into it the most interesting ones. You can accompany the texts with notes: comments from children, associations of adults … Even anecdotes will do.
Add family stories — with illustrations that the younger members of the family will proudly follow.
Within a few months you will be something to be proud of.
And in twenty years, your much grown-up offsprings will flipping through the pages with affection — and, perhaps, prepare pancakes with your children according to your recipes.
Trying to raise a family at the same table, the main thing is to look for options. If dad returns from work after nine, it makes no sense to wait for him with dinner — children can eat mom.
But hold on to dessert — it’s easy.
If the family more or less leaves at the same time in the morning, breakfast can be a joint one.
You will be surprised how much these unfortunate fifteen minutes a day can give, even if you look at each other with eyes that you can put matches in.