My mom cooked dinner pretty much every night of the week. Even if only a few of us were going to be home for dinner, she’s whip up a casserole (she was the Queen of Casseroles!), a veggie, maybe a side salad, and open a can of peaches or pears for dessert. Left-overs were put in the left-over dish to wait on the stove for any stragglers.
Except Sundays. I don’t really remember her cooking on Sundays. She might heat up some leftovers, maybe make BLT’s. And sometimes she made liver and onions with peas for just herself and my dad (because there was no way we kids were going near that stinky plate!), but there really wasn’t much cooking.
I’ve decided to carry on that tradition and we’ve started Kids Take Over the Kitchen Sunday. Partially because I’m just flat tired of cooking by Sunday, but also because I want all of my kids to figure out how to make themselves a decent meal.
For now this looks like toast or a sandwich for most of the kids. Avery makes a really good plate of scrambled eggs. Riley and Avery can manage waffles or pancakes, and Carson is starting to show a tiny bit of interest in cooking, especially if it involves making tacos. Reese just loves to stir things up (literally and figuratively).
So tonight we’re going to work on a list of things the kids want to learn to make and come up with a rotation so that each kid gets the opportunity to cook a recipe of their choosing for family dinner. I think we’ll cook up a full meal every other week or so, and the alternating Sundays will be “fend for yourself”, meaning, the kids make what they can for themselves with whatever they can find in the fridge or pantry. This will most likely be Greek yogurt with granola or peanut butter toast…..which I am just fine with as long as I don’t have to make it!
I’ll post stories and pictures as the kids start making their first meals…..there are bound to be epic messes and great successes.
When did you learn how to cook? What was the first meal you remember cooking?
This recipe is a True Winner, which means it meets my top three criteria for week-night meals:
1. It’s all real food.
2. It’s less than 15 minutes of hands-on prep time.
3. Most (meaning 3 out of 4) of my kids eat it without complaint.
Now I face the challenge of not making it too often….because I’ve learned that when I make a True Winner too often, it quickly turns into a loser. Two or three times a month seems to be just about right.
Cumin Pork Tenderloin with Sweet Potatoes
2 pork tenderloins (about 2 1/2 lbs)
1 tbsp cumin
2 tsp coriander seed
1 tsp sea salt
2 tbs olive oil (or coconut oil, bacon grease, butter)
3-4 sweet potatoes, peeled and cubed
1 onion, chopped
Preheat oven to 375 degrees.
Mix together cumin, coriander and salt in small bowl. Rub the spices over all sides of the tenderloins, covering the surfaces of each one, creating a thick layer.
Heat olive in large dutch oven over medium-high heat. Brown tenderloins about 2-3 minutes on all sides. Remove pork from pan. Add sweet potatoes and onions to the pan, covering the bottom. Place the tenderloins on top of the vegetables.
Cover the dutch oven and roast in oven for 30-40 minutes, or until the tenderloins are cooked through. Use a meat thermometer to test for doneness.
Slice the tenderloins and drizzle pan juices over slices and sweet potatoes.