(I am having issues with embedding images from Flickr so sometimes they aren't showing up.)
For years now, even before we moved here to the Gingerbread House, we ate dinner together as a family. When I was working, dinner was around 6.30pm. I've recently brought it back to 6pm. Alannah has her bath at 5pm then watches Play School (or a movie on weekends) while I hit the kitchen.
The big challenge of family meals is that Alannah does not like her meals "mixed". Soy sauce, barbeque sauce and mayonnaise are fine, but she must add them herself. I often noticed her pushing things around on her plate to ensure adequate separation.
Over the last year, dinner time has been a struggle. We often eat pasta or stirfry dishes but Alannah increasingly demurred. What to do?
First, I had a word to Santa after seeing some gorgeous Rhubarb divided plates on The Misadventurous Maker's instagram feed and he brought one for each of the girls.
Second, I decided to embrace the idea of one meal two ways. Again, I was inspired in this by The Misadventurous Maker. I did not want to cook a separate meal for Alannah, but I figured I could fashion something more appealing to her out of the same ingredients as we were to eat.
It has only been a week but I think I'm on to something here. Alannah eats more willingly and eats better. She isn't enthusiastic to try things she doesn't like (often things she has never tried), but she does it.
Yakitori chicken two ways (adapted from an Annabel Karmel recipe)
Fried rice two ways (adapted from a Bill Granger recipe)