There is a cooking crisis in America! Over the next several months, I will be working with Wolf to share tips, recipes and conversation, so that we can all work together to reclaim the kitchen. More and more of us are eating meals away from home and food that is prepared by others. With the decline of the kitchen, many of the younger generations don’t know how to cook even the basics and we’ve lost the opportunity to be a family around the dinner table.
Did you know that less than 50% of American’s meals are eaten at home, as compared to 98% in 1900? When I was growing up, most of my meals were made at home. My mom made dinner for us every night, we brought a bag lunch to school and ate breakfast at home before leaving for the day. These days, breakfast for adults often consists of a cup of coffee and for kids it is often eaten at school, if at all. Hardly anyone eats lunch at home and dinner is often eaten in restaurants or it is takeout.
As a blogger, I’ve heard from readers who tell me that they don’t know how to cook. They reach out to me with questions about how to make recipe conversions and about where to find ingredients in the grocery store. Some aren’t sure how to tell when food is fully cooked and others need help with substitutions. One woman told me she wanted to make really basic spaghetti for her family but didn’t know how and couldn’t find a recipe online. I can understand their frustration because I remember trying to learn the basics. I was lucky because I could always call my mom to ask her how. I am still learning and I am happy that I can share what I learn with all of you. Many readers have thanked me for posting easy to follow recipes with step-by-step photos.
As a mother, I’ve noticed that my kids want quick, easy foods to eat. Isn’t that how we all are? Life gets so busy and we are always in a hurry to move onto the next thing. I’ve noticed though that my kids have found great satisfaction in learning how to make “an awesome grilled cheese sandwich” or “the best soft pretzels ever”. Once we teach them how to cook or bake something, they gain confidence to try more and more recipes. When my kids are involved in making food, they are definitely going to at least see what it tastes like when is it done cooking! They’ve found a few foods that they don’t care for but most of them they realize they actually like.
One of the most important things about having a family dinner isn’t the food itself, but rather the opportunity to connect as a family. We talk about what happened during the day and share our plans for the rest of the week. Sometimes we talk about religion and other times we have a “dinner question” about a random topic. Our family meals are a way for us to catch up on what’s been going on and to offer each other support.
The kitchen doesn’t have to be complicated. Even one, simple family meal a week would be a great place to start!
I would love to hear your observations about the decline of the kitchen and your stories about how to reclaim the kitchen.
Please leave a comment below and check out this great video from Wolf.
This blog post is part of a paid SocialMoms and Sub-Zero Wolf blogging program. The opinions and ideas expressed here are my own.” Please note that new FTC blogger guidelines recommend posting the disclosure clearly at the top and at the end of sponsored blog posts. Disclosure Guidelines: http://ftc.gov/os/2013/03/130312dotcomdisclosures.pdf