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  1. Profile Photo Member

    Well, as you know, frozen veggies can actually be more nutritious than fresh ones, as they lock in the nutrition closer to harvest time.

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  2. Profile Photo Contributor

    Agreed. But then there’s that whole thing about plastic bags and microwaves and carcinogenic chemicals. I don’t even want to think about that. Ugh. I’m trying. I just can’t be Miss Organized Organic every night.

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  3. Profile Photo Contributor

    On the rare occasions when I’m placed in charge of food prep–which is to say, when my wife is traveling–I resort to a simple expedient: I ask the kids what they want. This always leads to a trip to Costco, where we go straight to the big freezers and load our cart with junk food: enchiladas, lasagna, pot stickers, and, the invariable favorite, corn dogs.

    Democracy. Give it a try, Ursula. When you’re feeling the guiltiest about what you’re serving, I think you’ll find, you’re giving your children–and, very likely, Mr. Hennessey–the greatest delight.

    There. Have I helped?

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  4. Profile Photo Contributor

    Thanks, Peter. I have to say that before today, I would not have known what you were talking about. But we recently moved to the suburbs, so this morning we went to a lovely Pentecost mass and then made our first-ever trip to Costco. At risk of sacrelige, it is hard to say which experience was more enlightening.

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  5. Profile Photo Contributor

    Ursula, Ursula. Welcome to America.

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  6. Profile Photo Contributor

    It wasn’t all fun and games. Matthew took a lone mango from a pile and innocently put it in the cart. At the checkout counter, the fellow grabbed the mango, hid it underneath his register and said, “You’re not allowed to buy just one!” Who knew? (Well, actually, as you point out, probably everyone else in America knows except us.)

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  7. Profile Photo Member

    Rob, it gets easier than that: the crock pot. Throw a roast in that puppy and you’ve eliminated another step, since the pot IS the oven. It may be a bit difficult to find a crock pot, as they haven’t manufactured one since the last bowling alley was built in 1977. On the pos, the El Camino brown will look flush against the double-layer grease puddle at the bottom of the pot.

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  8. Profile Photo Contributor

    Ursula, we’ve actually had to cut back on Costco runs because the cumulative effect of all of those incredible deals, and corresponding gargantuan quantities, threatened to overwhelm us. I still have paper products popping forth from every concealable location in the house, and it’s been several months since the move back to Safeway.

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  9. Profile Photo Editor

    You’re not allowed to buy just one mango at Costco? That’s it — I’m crossing Costco off my list.

    I love Costco, actually. But I have to say that it’s sort of sad that the Sunday roast has had its day. Because there’s nothing, really, that’s easier to make. I think we’ve all been brainwashed a bit about cooking and food in general. A roast is something you salt and pepper and pop into the oven and then take out of the over. I’d argue that there are fewer steps involved in roasting a chicken than in, say, making spaghetti, or even cooking vegetables.

    But then, easy for me to say: I don’t have hungry kids, some of whom will only eat what the other won’t.

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  10. Profile Photo Member

    I had an international job for many years that required being away from home about 200 days a year. My children were both young, and relatively unknown to me. At a relatively young age, 40, I was able to, in a sense, retire and work locally, on a part time basis. The problem was that by that time our kids were gone all the time with activities and friends. The solution, Sunday night dinner. A dining room table sit down Sunday dinner was made a requirement in our home, and the rule was that nothing was ever to take its place, unless it was something we all did together.

    There was some grumbling from the kids initially, but it soon became something we all looked forward too, helped by my not using it as time to parent so much as listen, a way to learn who the kids really were. Inviting friends was encouraged, and frequently there were others at the table. I will admit that got a bit complicated when by daughter in her teens would change boyfriends every six months, and I was not interested in learning much about the boy du jour.

    My wife loves to cook, and bake, so it was always not just wonderful family time but terrific meals, and yes sometimes a roast. I credit Sunday night dinners for my really becoming a family guy, and I would highly recommend it to all, regardless of what the menu is. The meals themselves I don’t remember, many of the conversations however are still vivid.

    On a sadder note, our daughter, who continued her habit of breaking up with a boy after 6 months through most of her twenties, just broke up with her significant other after five years, three of them living together. He just never came around to her point of view that life would not be complete without children. Two days later was Sunday and she was at our table, at age 33 and with lots of other options.

    In this fast food age, and when everything in our nation is not just changing, but changing at an alarming rate, I believe that a strong loving family is more important than ever. I couldn’t recommend family Sunday dinners more, as a way to help sustain the family, and bring everyone closer. It offers the opportunity to have weekly family traditions, not just relegating traditions to their usual role of playing a part in celebrating holidays.. The foundation of any society is the family, and it is the one thing that we for sure can influence. My belief, Sunday dinner can be a marvelous tool to help that, the role it used to have, prior to TV and TV trays, Disney and Lassie.

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  11. Profile Photo Inactive

    The biggest problem with roasting a chicken is the clean-up from the prep. We go into a Level 5 biohazard lockdown every time a raw chicken lifts its lifeless, giblet-filled neck in our kitchen. Clorox WIpes, Lysol disinfectant spray, boiling water… the works.

    It makes those spit roasted babies at CostCo look pretty darn appealing.

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  12. Profile Photo Inactive

    Growing up a preacher’s kid in Middle Tennessee, my family was on a rotating schedule of Sunday dinner invitations to church members’ homes. Those meals were wonderful and lasted all afternoon! Half the church came, along with whatever visitors could be coerced into attending. Nothing like biting into an a buttered ear of corn, while you look on at the cornfield from whence it came. Or standing barefoot in the grass munching on a fresh slice of watermelon while the juice ran down the front of your Sunday dress. I truly don’t understand why church attendance has waned in America. Everyone would eat much better if they warmed a pew every once in a while.

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  13. Profile Photo Contributor

     Our family totally revolves around Sunday dinners, with everything home made. We had a rib BBQ cookoff two weeks ago. Costco ribs of course. There were nine variaties. I was full from judging all of the styles. I think cooking together and eating the work are about the most gratifying events we have. A couple of good bottles of wine take some of the pressure off when the meal does not come out as planned. Great times though.

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