Home => How To Eat => Mastering Family Meals Step by Step => Mastering Family Meals: Cooking, Planning and Shopping
Cooking, planning, and shopping are big topics. To help you get started, here are some thoughts from
Secrets of Feeding a Healthy Family.
Become a fast and thinking cook. In order to celebrate eating and take good care of yourself with food, you have to cook-and keep on cooking. Plan to cook from scratch, cook using convenience foods and convenient ingredients, or cook ahead and eat leftovers. Yes, you can cook. For a recipe to get you started, check out
Tuna Noodle Casserole. Whether you are preparing meals at
four, Secrets gives you recipes and quick food-preparation tips.
Use planning, don't abuse it. You are using planning when you rough out a menu for the next few days, then take 5 minutes the night before to check the menu for the next night's dinner, get the canned goods lined up, and put the frozen vegetables toward the front of the freezer. You are using planning when you take shortcuts and make extra and use leftovers for another meal. But you are abusing planning when you make your meals complicated and pile on so much work you can't sustain the effort. You are also abusing planning when you say, ''Oh, we shouldn't eat that; it isn't good for us.''
Consider your shopping strategy. Think about it, experiment, and find a way of shopping that works for you. Random grocery shopping wastes time, energy, and money and defeats your cooking endeavors. In Secrets, I suggest shopping at three different levels:
Every 3 to 4 weeks: Big staples shopping. This is a major shopping excursion at a grocery emporium to stock up on foods that keep, such as frozen, canned, bottled, and dry foods, cleaning supplies, and paper goods.
Weekly: Produce, dairy, and fresh meat for the week.
Quick-stop: Milk, maybe bread or bananas.
To take the
trouble out of eating and put the
joy back in, make feeding yourself and your family a priority.
For more about family meals (and for research backing up this advice), see Ellyn Satter's
Secrets of Feeding a Healthy Family: How to Eat, How to Raise Good Eaters, How to Cook, Kelcy Press, 2008.
to purchase books and to review other resources.
Copyright © 2012 by Ellyn Satter. Published at www.EllynSatter.com.
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