Cooking, chopping, tossing: when the family helps in the kitchen

I’m hungry just thinking about this post.

Lately I have had a heck of a time following a low carb diet. I really have no excuse, the greens in the garden are exploding at the moment. What a great way to enhance boring old salads.

Curly parsley, taragon, the big fat green leaves are arugula, chives, flat leaf parsley and fresh dill.

I snip them into green salads, tuna or salmon salads, pasta dishes, pasta salads, soups, and grain salads.

Missing and still to be planted: various types of basil (sweet, greek and thai are my favorite), summer savory (I have winter), sages (multi-coloured), and chervil which goes great with eggs and fish dishes.

For instance, I snipped fresh, peppery arugula into this pasta and shrimp dish the kids gobbled up before each had to go to a baseball game.

Of course, I make couscous or quinoa salads fairly often in the summer as well. So simple, with just a bit of olive oil and a squeeze of lemon juice…

I love eating like this. Now if I could just get the family to contribute to the endless chopping of things more regularly…

How do you get the family involved in the kitchen? Is this a mixed blessing for you, like it is for me?

My 10 year old daughter enjoys helping out. She doesn’t enjoy cleaning up though, and teaching her to clean as you go to avoid a big mess at the end of the meal prep has mixed results. There was a time when she dropped a whole bunch of flour on the floor and I saw her sweep it up, except, she got tired of being meticulous and in the end swept a big portion of it under the tiny gap of the kitchen island. I wasn’t particularly thrilled with this as in summer, we do get ants in the house…


But at least the initiative was there!

For summer vacation I suggested each child get an opportunity to cook one meal a week. They get to choose, I would let them make the meal. The only prerequisit is that it has to match our meal time expectations (so dishing out a bag of McDonalds or throwing a frozen pizza in the oven is not allowed).

My son said: “I’ll do what’s easiest”.

I asked him what he had in mind.

“Those cup-like chips you fill with the beef mixture”, he said. (nachos)

I said: “Great idea, I’ll teach you how to make chili!”

He declined. Too much work, he said. Then I reminded him that he already knows how to make chili. I have a picture to prove it. He was about 10 when I showed him the ropes on that recipe.


Are there some members of your family who actually like helping in the kitchen? Or do they view it as a chore, a hobby, or ‘too much like school’?



5 thoughts on “Cooking, chopping, tossing: when the family helps in the kitchen

  1. Low carb is hard! My food allergy to wheat helps, but honestly, so hard still. I also HATE salad. However, I will saute greens and eat them that way. Your greens look lovely!

    Liked by 1 person

  2. I’m really blessed to have a husband that loves to cook, and is not picky at all. My daughter, however……..well, I pick my battles. She knows how to make enough things to where she won’t starve when she gets on her own, but she’s never expressed a big interest in learning to cook.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. It’s my-now 4 yr old that loves to help! She will tear the leaves off of the Kale for me and hold turnips while I cut off the greens for stir fry. As long as it’s not ‘slimy’ she will help. She actually has more initiative than the 11 year old. 🤷‍♀️

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Mainly me in the kitchen but that’s because I have a new found love for cooking. Miss 11 has started to make her own Banana Bread and cupcakes. Could be rubbing off on her ?


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