Back to school season can make catching quality family time a challenge. One tried and true solution? Family dinners. Make a habit of sitting down to dinner at least once a week to catch up and have some fun. Try these themes and tips to plan a meal everyone can look forward to!
Dinner and a Movie
It’s a classic for a reason. Ideally, set things up to keep courses coming throughout the movie. Start with a light appetizer, like salad, bread and oil, or pita chips and hummus, to nosh on while you pick a movie. Leave dessert for after the credits roll. Doing this will insure you have some time to chat and discuss post-movie.
Look Ma–No Hands
A finger foods meal is fun, easy, and a little goofy. There are the old American standbys of chicken fingers, turkey legs, sliders, and their ilk–or you can try something different. Many international cuisines are more oriented toward forkless consumption, and often healthier, such as mediterranean/middle eastern staples like flat bread, tabouli, mejadra and yogurt.
Who says the family meal has to be dinner? If you can swing it, family breakfasts are just as fun. Try creating a parfait buffet, featuring assorted yogurt flavors, a selection of fresh fruit, granola, fruit preserves, and honey.
Want to get your kids involved in preparation, but dubious of their culinary creative ability? Try having a sauce “competition”. Sauces are delicious but low risk if made in small batches–everyone can pick and choose which they prefer. For pasta, offer up ingredients like fresh tomatoes, pesto, alfredo, garlic cloves, and herbs. For dipping sauces for veggies or fries, try ingredients such as peanut butter, cream cheese, hot sauce, scallions, honey sour cream (though we do suggest you actively discourage using all of these at once).
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