1. Parenting

Stay-at-Home Dads can add their Signature to the Menu


Now that you are an expert at getting mealtime organized, planning menus and somehow producing nutritious food with the 1-year-old screaming at your ankles, it might be time to spice up those cooking skills.

After all, as a stay-at-home dad, you are in charge of the kitchen. Put your own touch on the meals you are creating. Use dinner (or breakfast or lunch) as a creative outlet. Use recipes to help keep the mind stimulated. And have fun doing it.

Hopefully everything turns out OK and the family enjoys their new-found chef.

Here are a just few ways to add your signature to those dishes.

Add a Twist to Existing Favorites

Every family has recipes handed down through the years. Take something you always make and see if you can’t change it up a bit.

Maybe there is a new side dish that can go with the meal instead of the same old mashed potatoes. Or play with the types of spices that go into the main course. Try an alternative to the way it is prepared. Instead of baking that favorite roast, try to slow cook it or even try out a smoker.

There is no need to toss out tradition, but it can be fun and tasty to add your own style.

Create Your Own Recipes

If you are feeling a little ambitious and have become comfortable in the kitchen, try creating your own dishes. No need to be bizarre, but find ingredients that everyone in the family enjoys and figure out a way to meld them together.

Become friends with the spice isle at the grocery store and experiment with them on different meats for the grill or develop a new marinade to bake that chicken with. Come up with a new casserole using whatever there is in the cupboards. You’d be surprised what mixing combinations of foods and baking them together can do for the taste buds.

Hey, if someone got a tater tot casserole to work, anything is possible.

Try New Foods

It’s easy to get stuck in a dinner rut. Time constraints and hungry children often are winning forces. But when you can, and planning ahead will probably help, try and find new foods and recipes to help keep meals from getting boring.

Read up on different meal ideas on the Internet and in cookbooks. Spend some time in the produce isle and see what different varieties of fruits and vegetables can be

appetizing. There may be a different cut of meat or two that could be tasty off the grill. Nothing has to be exotic, just change it up every now and then.

It’s easy to limit dinner to the same three or four dishes because they’ve become easy and the family likes them. But take a chance every now on different dishes and see what happens.

After all, it has become your kitchen.

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