Some weeks, I like a good kitchen challenge. I get the urge to try several new things, all at once. I think I’m looking for inspiration to push my limits and leave my cooking comfort zone. I usually try at least one new recipe per week anyway (I have severe Cooking ADHD), but some weeks, I like to take that number to an entirely new level. This type of “New Food Blitzkrieg” is done in French schools periodically, and is called “Tasting Week”. It’s usually themed and is met with much fanfare and celebration. The kids dress up in costumes, decorations are hung, and the kids celebrate a week of trying new foods in the cafeteria. I will spare you the obvious comparisons to the opposite situation on our side of the ocean.
So I declared last week “the inspiration menu” at our house, and you’ll find the courses with links to recipes below.
Mac N Cheese & Bacon Wrapped Green Bean Bundles
Cowboy Caviar Nachos (we ate this recipe on nacho chips with sour cream)
If the meal had a vegetable or soup or salad, I served it first while the main course finished cooking. If bread was a part of any meal, it was served last, after the main dish had been eaten. We followed a couple of these meals with bread right out of the oven, served with a tiny bit of butter and chocolate. You can find that recipe in Karen Le Billon‘s French Kids Eat Everything. At lunch, rather than dessert, the girls often like to finish with wheat crackers, topped with Brie, topped with a tiny bit of jam. And as long as they didn’t snack at all between breakfast and lunch, and had their afternoon snack at least an hour before dinner, the girls enthusiastically (OK, SARA enthusiastically ate, and Kelly put up with us, but gave it her best effort thus far) ate the new food. They didn’t love the Grilled Figs and Cheese, but they gave it an honest try. I reworked the carrot soup and added cream at dinner (we had this as a starter before the Cowboy Caviar), and they loved it the second time around. Otherwise, I’d call everything a total win. And if you need me…I’ll be washing dishes. SO, so, so many dishes.