Wisdom Comes Suddenly

A Culinary Summer, Volume Six

July 15th, 2012 · 4 Comments

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.


Grilled Figs and Cheese & Carrot Soup with Ginger and Lemon

Stuffed Tomatoes & Watermelon Salad  (I obviously left the rum out of this recipe, but too bad…it sounded wonderful)

Stuffed Pizza Bites & Kids’ Salad

Mac N Cheese & Bacon Wrapped Green Bean Bundles


Wild Rice & Chicken Soup & Kids’ Salad & Browned Butter Banana Muffins

Pinto & Black Beans With Ham & Sweet Cornbread (not new, but oh-so-everyone’s-favorite)

Cowboy Caviar Nachos (we ate this recipe on nacho chips with sour cream)

Spaghetti with Tomatoes, Kalamata Olives & Feta Cheese

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.

Tags: The Girls

4 responses so far ↓

  • 1 Teresa // Jul 15, 2012 at 9:23 pm

    Yummy fun!

    ~Have a lovely day!

  • 2 Karin // Jul 16, 2012 at 7:41 am

    Do you ever read the blog Never Seconds http://neverseconds.blogspot.com/?m=1? It’s written by a young girl in Scotland and chronicles her daily school lunches. She’s gotten so popular that kids from around the world send her photos of their school lunches. The US is one of only a few countries who use disposable lunch trays… I love seeing the international lunches – lots of inspiration! Friday was end of term so there won’t be new pictures for a while but the older pictures are worth a peek!

  • 3 Lydia // Jul 17, 2012 at 10:55 am

    I want to come live at your house forever, and eat figs and brie.

  • 4 Stephanie // Jul 17, 2012 at 11:13 am

    Dear Lord you are making me hungry! I want to come play at your house.