This week CEMS is promoting Family Dinner Week. Each day via email and the CEMS Blog, we are providing tips and research on having meaningful mealtimes with your family.TIPS for WEDNESDAY:
-Keep it simple! Family mealtime doesn't have to be a big formal production every night. Just do what you can!Conversation starters suggestions:
-ROSES, THORNS AND LIGHT BULBS- This suggestion is used by some Cape families already, and was shared with us by CEMS parent Bryan Connelly.
*Ask each member of your family to share one of the following items:
Rose: Favorite or bright spot of your day
Thorn: Irritating or low point of your day
Light Bulb: Insight you gained, or something interesting you learned RESEARCH ON WHY EATING DINNER AS A FAMILY IS SO IMPORTANT:
The following excerpt comes from "A Parent's Guide to Building Resilience in Children and Teens, Giving Your Child Roots and Wings" by Dr. Kenneth Ginsburg. (This book will be discussed with CEMS School Counselors in May, please join us!)
"You can enhance family connection by establishing rituals such as eating at least one meal a week together...No matter how busy everyone is, set the date....Attendance is required (dress is optional).
Take no excuses, no last-minute 'But I have to go to my friend's house', or 'I forgot'...You may want to turn
off the phone during dinner or light candles on the table...No matter how difficult the rest of the week has been, no matter how many different directions each family member has been flying in, there is always the guaranteed connection." (p 118). MEAL SUGGESTIONS:
Early Spring "Hunger Gap" Recipes from farm owners Mary Ellen and Austin Chadd from Green Spark Farm
in Cape Elizabeth.
Check their website to learn more about their CSA and summer markets.
Sprouts * you can sprout your own lentils, mung beans, alfalfa or speckled peas overnight.
Oil & Vinegar or Dressing
Optional: Beets, Onion, Carrot other veggies.
Select two or three kinds of sprouts & put 1/2 - 1 cup of each in a salad bowl. Dress with oil and vinegar and a dash of sea salt or your favorite dressing. Sprout Salad with Beets Variation: Slice golden beets or red beets and boil in water for 10 minutes until soft. Run under cold water to chill & toss with sprouts and dressing. You can also slice beets very thinly into coins or half-moons and toss raw with sprout salad. Other Variations: Add 1/2 cup cold cooked kidney, soldier, or yellow-eye beans to make a bean salad. Add your favorite veggies like grated carrot, olives or fresh herbs. Add leftover cooked grains like Maine-grown wheat berries (available at the Portland Winter Farmer's Market), barley, or rice.
MAINE BAKED BEANS:
You can find Maine grown dry beans at many local grocers. We love soldier and yellow eye and Jacob's cattle. If you cook up 2 lb of dry beans, then you can have leftover cooked beans in the fridge for another meal, like chili!
1 onion (or substitute garlic, scallions or chives)
1-2 lb. Maine dry beans** such as yellow-eye (or 2 cans of beans)
2-4 tsp Yellow mustard condiment (like Raye's Maine hot-dog mustard)
2-4 Tbs. Molasses
2-4 Tbs. Tomato paste or sauce
Salt & Pepper to taste
Optional: 1-2 strips Maine seaweed, such as kelp or wakame (about 2 Tbs.), or Maine bacon, salt-pork, or pork belly, about 1/2 cup chopped. Seaweed is high in calcium, and trace minerals and vitamins.
**To cook dry beans: The night before (after supper), or the afternoon before making Maine baked beans, you must cook the beans. You can used canned beans in a pinch. Bring dry beans, under 3-4 quarts of water to boil & remove from heat. Let soak covered for 1 hour. After 1 hour, drain and rinse the beans. Add 3-4 quarts water to cover beans by 1" or more. Put on to boil, stirring frequently, and when the pot boils, turn down heat to simmer, and add seaweed and/or bacon, and cook on medium low until beans are soft but not falling apart, about 1.5 - 2 hours.
The Maine Baked Beans:
Chop onion and/or garlic and add to medium hot pot with 1 Tbs. cooking oil. Cook onion until translucent, or garlic for 1 minute. Add cooked beans, about 1 1/2 cups per person. Note: If you want to make chili another night, save enough cooked beans for another meal. To the beans, add to your taste preference: yellow mustard, molasses, tomato paste, and salt and pepper to taste. Simmer until warm & serve hot with sprout salad and ginger bread, biscuits, cornbread or toast.THIS INFORMATION IS BROUGHT TO YOU BY THE CEMS WELLNESS/ADVISORY TEAM.