Food was not something we worried about in our house when I was growing up. Don’t get me wrong we definitely ate plenty of it and we ate as a family as often as we could but food was, for the most part, something we ate just because we had to. Except for special occasions….and Friday nights. My parents weren’t into health or nutrition in any big way so food just wasn’t that big a deal. I remember helping my mum bake in the kitchen on the odd occasion, but it was always for a special treat, not something we did often.
My school lunches were filled with rubbish (sorry mum). Not literal rubbish of course but I’m talking chips, chocolate, a carton of juice, a ham sandwich and a wee piece of fruit. Mum wasn’t doing anything unusual, in fact, pretty much all of my friends had a similar packed lunch. I do remember having one friend who would come to school with these little homemade pork pies, salads and raw veggies and every time I saw her lunch I would thank god it wasn’t mine!
I moved out of home for university at seventeen and not much changed. The first couple of years of my degree were fuelled by 2 minute noodles, bake at home rolls with melted cheese and mashed potatoes. I can’t even claim the ‘poor student on a budget’ excuse as I worked a lot through uni and always had money….I just preferred to spend it on beer and music – priorities guys!!!
Then something happened…I met a boy (who would have guessed). He was, in my naive opinion of the time, the ultimate foodie. He had been one of those ‘weird’ kids who had been eating raw veggies and hummus for lunch and had eaten McDonalds maybe once a year. He cooked, he knew about all of these foods I had never heard of (wonton soup?) and food really excited him!
He cooked for me an embarrassing number of times before I finally ran out of excuses and was guilted into cooking for him. Having never used the internet for food research purposes I was way out of my depth in that field and ended up having to borrow a bloody cookbook for the occasion! Needless to say it was pretty average and being the competitive person I am I decided I was going to have to figure out this cooking thing.
Anyway we travelled the world and ate everything in sight and my foodie horizons broadened beyond my expectations. I became a little bit obsessed with all things food and spent a lot of time mastering my culinary skills. I thought I was pretty awesome….until I had my babies.
As soon as I became pregnant and suddenly responsible for the health and nutrition of someone other than myself I had to re-evaluate everything I knew about food! Sure I could cook all these lovely meals which I would never have dreamed about a few years back but they still contained a fair few ingredients I couldn’t in good faith give to my little people. Plus a lot of my lovely recipes called for a couple of hours in the kitchen….haha as if thats going to happen with two kids!
Overnight I became the women in the shop who scrutinises every label before putting anything in the cart, the women who literally dreams of ways to make favourite unhealthy foods into healthier and better versions…I am now even that mum who supplies the ‘weird’ food in the playground! But I will have you know that weird food is so yummy and popular my daughter has to guard her snacks very carefully (she is 2 and she literally guards her food – it’s pretty cute)! Plus I need to be able to make them while wearing one baby and entertaining the other. Oh how life has changed.
My foodie dream in life is to make sure our bellies are beautiful things filled with lovely whole foods that taste amazing 🙂