daily bread

One of the questionable delights of child rearing is the catering operation involved. I mostly enjoy cooking, but left on my own, I would cook a great deal less than these young ‘uns demand. I have to remind myself that I am lucky to have normal, healthy teenage children who are hungry all the time!

Although the teenage appetite has made it a little easier, they are still most particular about what they eat. This is complicated by the fact that while one would prefer to eat nothing but meat and pizza, the other will only eat fish and vegetables.

Last year I developed a small repertoire of meals acceptable to both of them, and we systematically worked through those, week after week. We all got a little tired of this, and this year I have been determinedly experimenting on new dishes, with mixed success. I have mostly got the recipes right, but the results have not always met with their approval.

There are times when after finding a recipe, going out to gather the ingredients, coming home and working tirelessly and lovingly on my new masterpiece, the first mouthfuls are greeted with such a lack of enthusiasm, I feel like wrapping the plates and their carefully assembled contents round their darling little heads. I expect most parents are familiar with this feeling.

To be fair, they always eat what is put in front of them, and they also have learned to always thank whoever prepared the meal they are eating, no matter what they think of it. They are not insensitive to how fortunate they are to have anything to eat at all. Still I am most pleased when they are heartily enjoying their food.

When they are not with me, I get by on a diet of rice and beans, salads, steamed vegetables, and a chunk of fish or meat about once a week. Cheap and delicious. Their tastes are a little different.

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