My daddy and I are big time foodies! My momma, on the other hand, would be content with cheese and crackers. Every holiday my momma tries to convince the rest of the family to plan a meal of simple, healthy foods. At first we tend to go along with it, but before long someone will invariably say that you can’t have the holidays without this dish or that recipe. Before you know it the simple idea is history!
Each of my siblings has a favorite comfort food that must be served for the dinner to feel complete. My baby brother always wants broccoli, cheese, and rice casserole. My older brother loves turkey and all the fixings. Then there is me . . . holidays are nothing without a green bean casserole! By this time my momma gets wrapped up in the festivities and comes up with a new dessert she has to try.
Every holiday, for as long as I can remember, my daddy would be up early working on the turkey. My siblings and I (and now our families) watch the holiday parades. Afterwards, we grab a light snack and all start helping momma by making our favorite side dishes. Even now it makes me smile just thinking of those times spent together cooking. Honestly some of the best memories I have with my family center around the kitchen. Cooking, eating, laughing, sharing, it is all a part of what makes the time together special.
Now that I have a family of my own I realize why my momma wants simple. I want simple too, but as I look back on my family holidays I want those same memories with my husband and boys. This of course means a huge mess and tons of prep on my end but cooking together even when they are little is worth all the extra effort.
I love how our Creator made eating such a delightful experience. From the planning to the cooking to the eating, there is just so much to savor and enjoy. I love how food can bring comfort and warm feelings of past family gatherings. Some of the best conversations I have had with my family members have come about during meal preparation and consumption. Cooking with my children gives us all time to slow down and connect with each other.
With the holidays just around the corner what are your plans? I encourage you to set aside time to get in the kitchen and create something wonderful with your family. It does not have to be complicated and fancy, it just needs to taste good and involve everyone. I recently stumbled upon the cutest children’s cookbook from Tommy Nelson. It is called The Great Fairy Baking Competition. It is appealing to little girls, but the recipes work for all kids. If you need some ideas for getting started cooking with your kids this would be a wonderful resource.
What is your must-have comfort food for the holidays? Is it a casserole, like mine? Or possibly a dessert you make with your kids? Is there a special way granddad always made the turkey? Let me know in the comments and feel free to share a recipe or two!