You want me to ditch prepared frozen meals?
This week’s Change the world Wednesday takes us back to the kitchen again!
We’ve had the challenge of reducing food waste, and eating only whole foods for a day. Now we’re being challenged to something which will be rather difficult in this household.
Our challenge is to eliminate prepared, frozen dinners from our grocery list.
The argument is that convenience meals are energy intensive. From the ingredients that come from goodness knows where, the shipping, packaging and energy needed to keep the food frozen it all adds up to a pretty pricey food both to the environment and no doubt on our own health.
Now I can hold up my hands and say that apart from freezing fruit and vegetables when in season, I don’t eat anything from the freezer.
However, I DO buy things for Little Miss Green. I buy oven chips and things like fish fingers. These are kept in for such times as I have to prepare a meal in a hurry or LMG has friends to tea who wouldn’t know a home cooked meal if it bit them on the bum.
Sure I could make chips and even fish fingers; better still I could serve jacket potato and fresh fish, but let’s face it, there’s something about fishfingers and chips that’s good to eat, especially when you’re nine …
I also buy frozen convenience foods from our local health shop – I know that sounds like a contradiction in terms, but they stock vegetarian alternatives for main meals, spring rolls and organic nuggets – again I know in my heart these are nowhere near as good as a home cooked meal, but there are times when I’m simply too tired to bother and these offer a better alternative than a pot noodle or packet of crisps.
So I’m not sure I can join in with this challenge. 90% of Little Miss Green’s meals are home cooked from scratch. As long as I’m organised and feeling energised it’s simple for me to whip up a meal. I enjoy cooking and I love creating meals for my family with love.
But the other 10% of the time we might get in late, I might have a heavy schedule or be under the weather. In these instances I reach, with gratitude, for the fishfingers and chips.
I’m aware of the lack of nutritional value, of the dreadful consequences on the environment and some of the questionable effects of eating such ‘food’ but I’m not perfect and I still remember how fabulous fishfingers and chips can taste!
You know what they say; everything in moderation 😉
What about you – could you ditch prepared, frozen dinners for good?
That’s a good question! There are definitely gradations in prepared meals, as you mention, as well as special treats you don’t want to do without forever. I know we definitely have cut down a great deal on frozen meals, simply because we’ve refined our palates by eating better and fresher!
@Lauren @ Hobo Mama: Oh yes! The palate really develops doesn’t it? My DD asked me if I wanted some cake the other day and I just couldn’t eat it – far too sweet and sickly; I’d rather eat a raspberry; it has TASTE!
A few months back my husband and I decided to switch out our freezer of store-bought frozen food with homemade “ready to cook” meals. We take a few hours every now and then and make up stir-frys, jambalayas, hamburger patties, etc, and then freeze them for those times when we don’t feel like cooking or don’t have time to do prep work. Some food is pre-cooked, some needs to get thrown onto the stove or into a crockpot, but we try and make sure we have lots of choices in terms of time to prepare and variety of food.
I’ll admit, we don’t have kids so we don’t have to deal with potentially picky eaters, so the transition has been working well for us. The one thing I haven’t managed to find yet is a really good chicken finger recipe that freezes well. So until then….I cheat with the natural food store selections 😉
@Angel: Hi Angel, that is a wonderful idea and one I aspire to! I’m not that organised yet, but I would love to do that. Well done you! Thanks for sharing your inspiring lifestyle with us 🙂