Friday, January 6, 2017

Food Memories — What is a Food Memory? And how can we make them?

Fresh Pasta Making Day
What is a food memory? A food memory is a moment in life which you vividly remember an experience around food. The experience could be positive or negative. Delicious or disgusting. Maybe it was your Father making you finish all your peas at the dinner table (peas are gross). Or something you ate every single time visiting Grandma. What are your food memories?

Today I'm sharing fantastic photos shot by my friend, Mary Sue Stevens. Mary Sue makes an effort in making food memories with her children by an annual special homemade birthday dinner. Plus, you'll want to read on for one of my favorite personal food memories.

Fresh Pasta Making DayMy favorite Food Memory: Mom hunched over our white oven range topped with black ring burners flaring bright red. Signaling hot, don't touch! Standing, hand on hip, boredly pouring batter by half cup measurements into the skillet. Quickly flicking her wrist to coat each surface of the skillet, covering every hole with batter. Like magic, the runny liquid turns into firm enchilada shells. Each hand-crafted tortilla bathed in homemade enchilada sauce to be filled next with cheese and meat, settled into a 13 x 9. Oh, that first bite of creamy, cheesy, beefy, home made, delicious enchilada. No enchilada will come close to compare. Probably why to attempt making the dish would be unwise. I'll never forget watching my mom painstakingly make that meal or the enjoyment.

Fresh Pasta Making Day
Now, a mother myself, I love to watch Christian and Liam come into the kitchen to peer, on tippy toes, wondering with awe at the stovetop. Inquisitive, what burning bright, bubbling masterpieces does Mom have underway today? Asking for more details on when we drop pasta into the bubbling cauldron or how béchamel becomes thick and white. Some nights I answer with adult-like description assuming their young minds comprehend. Others, I'm more tired in my response. Going something like: Everyone out of the kitchen! Responses to form my own child's food memory. 
Fresh Pasta Making DayFresh Pasta Making Day
How can we form more vibrant food memories?

Ways I make Food Memories for my Tribe

  • I've had to let go...Don't be afraid to allow your children to use sharp knives and chop a soft item, like cheese. Graduate into vegetables, like carrots. Stand by. Take a break from all you have to do and supervise. 
  • Let them get messy. It's all washable! …Usually. But, hey, it's just stuff!
  • Have stools in the kitchen for little peering eyes. 
  • Yes, let them use the hot oven. My nine year old takes things out of the oven. My six year old stirs hot stovetop pots. 
  • If these ideas aren't age appropriate, pull out the pots and pans, a wooden spoon, and let them bang away! Or turn on the music for a lively kitchen dance.

Tell me… What is your food memory?
Fresh Pasta Making Day
Kellan Makes Food Memories

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I'd love to hear all about your kitchen adventures! Xo, Becki