My name is Emily. Kids Carte du Jour is a meal planning and Mediterranean recipe guide for families. It’s also for anyone who wants to eat fresh meals from scratch on a daily basis, something which is sometimes difficult for families to manage, especially with parents who work and have busy schedules.
Here I share with you what I have learned about cooking fresh and from scratch everyday for a family of four:
- it can be relatively quick and easy
- you don’t have to know a lot about cooking
- feasible while working full time
Kids Carte du Jour began as a place for me to post the Mediterranean recipes I was feeding to my kids. I have always enjoyed cooking and baking, but I never considered writing about this until our youngest child was diagnosed with Prader Willi Syndrome (PWS), a genetic disorder that, among other things, requires strict adherence to a healthy diet. People with PWS have a complex relationship with food (similar to many people in society today, only sometimes more severe with the genetic component). Learn more about PWS here.
The diagnosis of our child’s disability was overwhelming. We felt heartbroken about losing the dreams we had for our child. This time in our lives became very much about letting go of our expectations and desire for control and coming face to face with our beliefs about people with disabilities, and in essence, what types of lives are worth living.
A lot of positive things came out of that very difficult time. We already ate a relatively healthy diet, so we didn’t have to make dramatic changes, but we did have to learn about meal planning and nutrition. Living in Barcelona, Spain, with its wealth of fresh foods and Mediterranean cuisine, helped us. We also have Melanie Silverman – a California-based nutritionist- to thank. Through meal planning and organization, I was able to learn to prepare fresh Mediterranean meals from scratch on a daily basis, while continuing to work nearly full time and caring for two kids. Born and raised in America, I know how difficult it is to institute traditional cooking into busy American lifestyles, so I’ve developed a few tricks and short-cuts to make this diet a feasible and quick option for our family. I am sharing what I am learning here. I hope that among friends and family we can exchange ideas and support each other.
The recipes and menus I post on this site are healthy, from scratch and easy. Actually, I could hardly call them “recipes” as most of them don’t have more than 3 to 5 ingredients. Anyway, everything in life should be simple. This is what works for our family now, and we will have to change and adapt as time goes on.
We do have think about PWS and plan our meals in a way that most people don’t have to worry about. But it’s a wonderful opportunity, to honor eating, to remember that feeding ourselves is really just about our intention to live, to nourish our bodies. Above all, this is a learning process, so please share your menus, recipes and experiences with me.