During quarantine the school district here was able to set up a meals on wheels type program where any kid 18 and under living in this district can sign up for free meals to be delivered to their house. Breakfast and lunch. It has been such a big help in the obvious way of helping with food cost, but it also gave my kids a sense of normalcy at the beginning of this. Foods they were familiar with from school eased some of the anxiety this started out creating.
Food has an incredible power in our lives. It can elicit soul-deep responses in people and transport you to another time and place. It can revolt you, nourish you, delight your senses. I just love having fun in the kitchen to feed the people I love or care about.
Moving into the second week of the groceries, we had leftover chicken stew over buttermilk biscuits (yes, the Jiffy ones that my mom sent us). The girls ate it up. Always a proud moment. And with all these cold snaps, it’s the perfect comfort food before bed.
We also had a beef and potato casserole. I just made a box of scallop potatoes, cooked ground beef on the stove with seasonings (typically salt, pepper, garlic powder, onion powder, and a couple others), and then mixed it all together and heat a little longer in the already hot oven. That was another hit. I love casseroles. It’s so simple to pick a couple items and put it all together, stick it in the oven and come back when it’s done. Sometimes, 4 o’clock is the perfect time to start dinner. Then it’s in the oven when the crazy hour hits and I can play with the girls until it’s ready at 5 or 5:30.
Then we had California Cheesesteaks with sweet potato fries. Frozen cheesesteak meat is super easy to cook up and added to the mayo and lettuce on the bun, it was really good. I’ll have to cook more meat next time. I love how easy these were. It’s also nice when your husband gets hungry late and makes both of you cheesesteaks while the kids are sleeping.
Lunch tends to be a lighter affair for me. It’s just the way my metabolism works, which I discovered through trial and error over the years. I eat light during the day and heavy at night. I prefer produce and protein during the day, and carbs with some protein and produce at night. The carbs at night keep me going through the day. All that means is that salads are my go to for lunch. Heavy on protein and veggies.
This salad has avocado, tomato, cucumber, feta cheese, slow-cooked chicken, and a balsamic fig dressing. The kids had their boring side-salad style with Ranch. They absolutely hate balsamic anything. I’ve tried. I’ll try again, but usually I just give them Ranch.
The last one here is the kids’ lunch. Turkey and cheese on a bagel, toasted together in the toaster oven, with honey mustard and a side of pineapples. And of course, we occasionally use paper plates for a bit of a break on dishes. Time to clean the kitchen again.