Food for thought: Life lessons around the family dinner table
Here’s some food for thought: You can learn a lot of valuable life lessons at the dinner table.
Okay, I’m not what you call a foodie philosopher. But I do know that preparing, consuming and sharing food can be as enriching for the mind and soul as it is for the body.
Here’s a smorgasbord of random lessons I’ve learned in the kitchen and the dining room.
Take risks: Experimenting with different ingredients can be a little risky, but can yield surprisingly savory new dishes. Likewise, changing your routine and seeking new experiences can be just what you need.
Give it your best: Cooking from scratch requires time, work and patience, but it’s always tastier than fast foods. Investing time and effort into the things that matter in life pays the biggest dividends, too.
Enjoy simple pleasures: Sometimes juicy peaches, s’mores or grilled burgers are as lip-smacking as haute cuisine. Seeking enjoyment in simplicity can be very satisfying and gratifying.
Everything in moderation: Too many sweets and the resulting stomachaches teach us the value of moderation. Restraint can help preserve our well-being, and increase our enjoyment of life’s “treats.”
‘Too many cooks’ is better: My favorite meals have involved cooking alongside others. It’s fun and gets better results. That’s why collaborating and cooperating with others always is a “best practice.”
Expand your horizons: Trying new dishes opens up new possibilities. Case in point: my family’s exploration of Mediterranean cuisine made us healthier, and inspired us to visit that part of the world.
We are what we eat: Achieving variety in our diets helps us feel better and healthier. Similarly, our experiences shape who we are. The more experiences we seek, the wiser we become.
What lessons have you learned from cooking and dining?
Feel free to leave a comment below – we’d love to hear what you can bring to the table.
Editor’s note: We want all of you to celebrate the family dinner table. American Family is partnering with FamilyFoodie.com to create an e-cookbook to inspire families to come back to the table, and we need your help! Share your recipes for your chance to be featured in the cookbook by submitting a family favorite recipe here. You will be entered to win one of six $100 Williams-Sonoma gift cards. One lucky entry will win one valued at $500! When the e-cookbook comes out later this fall, you’ll be among the first to receive a copy.