Friday, March 09, 2007

Grow your own Kitchen Help.

The one thing that makes me stumble most often in my frugal living journey is eating out. I have developed and found many easy to prepare quick meals but some days I'm just too tired to cook.
My frugal tip this week is really a very obvious one for most people, but something I was slow to catch onto. If you need help in the kitchen, grow your own! I finally caught onto the fact that teaching your children, and husband if he is willing, to cook saves you from resorting to expensive prepared foods or from calling the pizza man so often.
After my third child was born, and my oldest son entered the bottomless pit stage, I finally realized that it was prudent that I teach them how to cook. I had fallen into the same way of operating that my mother had used. I thought it was easier to do myself than take the time to teach the kids.
It wasn't until I started homeschooling that I got serious about teaching the kids how to prepare meals. I had always let them help with cookies and baking but I had not taught them how to prepare a full meal by themselves.
The first thing we did was choose a notebook for each of them that we started filling with basic recipes. I found it necessary to write each recipe out in detail with such simple steps as "peel the apples, slice and remove core" included. This became more apparent as we continued along and had a few real surprises like apple seeds in our Apple Crisps!
Pancake pic by Tyler. His first pancake of which he was very proud!
My goal was to have each of the kids able to fully prepare a meal by themselves or together. Each child chose their own speciality, so on weeks that I was sick etc. we didn't have to have spaghetti 4 nights in a row. It hasn't always been easy, but it has been fun. Results are still questionable sometimes. Now my oldest children are gone and I only have one left at home, so I have more time to spend teaching him his way around the kitchen. I'm hoping for even better things from him. It does feel great to sit down to a meal that you didn't have to lift a finger to prepare and not break the bank

1 comment:

Sonny said...

Ryan knows how to cook griiled cheeses,spaghetti,biscuits and all the easy non-timeconsuming recipes.Meaghan on the other hand likes to try new recipes.So far she can do the basics and follow recipes well.She has gone through the cookbooks or the websites and picked a meal but hey it's a good thing to do so they know how to cook.If it hadn't been for a cookbook Tim and I would have starved.I taught myself how to cook when mom was working at night and decided when Ryan and Meaghan were little they would be able to feed themselves when they took the next step in life too.