The Rise of Convenience Foods
We live in a time where many of us are arguably fed through convenience. I’m guessing some of us wouldn’t survive very long without the likes of packaged or frozen foods, takeaway, restaurant meals, and meal delivery services. I’m not going to lie – I thoroughly enjoy my weekly takeaway meal (Pad Thai and a curry win it for me all the time, hands down!).
At the same time, I could write all day about how much of an advocate I am about cooking from scratch. Like most Australians with kids, I lead a pretty busy life. I don’t have the luxury of having parents close by to help when I need so my husband and I play tag team most days trying to fit in our work, training, and time with the kids (and each other). In other words, time for food prep is scarce.
So.. I totally get it. The thought of coming back to prep your meals (or lunchboxes) for the next day can seem incredibly overwhelming after a long day. That’s not even taking into account the “wildcards” that life can throw at you – falling sick, a tight work deadline, a kid who just won’t go to sleep.
With all that, it’s no surprise that the lure of convenience food can be incredibly tempting!
Convenience foods are defined as types of foods that save time in food acquisition, preparation and clean up. They range from restaurant meals to grab-and-go meals from grocery stores. Although these foods save time, they tend to have lower nutritional values and can be more expensive than home-prepped food.
So what do I do 99% of the time when I hear the convenience foods call out to me? I simply ignore it and keep plodding on.
Why? Because I relish the reward and satisfaction I get when I hear “that’s so good” or “thanks for cooking mum” after putting hot home-cooked food on my familys’ plate at the end of a long day. .
Those seemingly small remarks mean the world to me and are the fuel for my everyday grind – they are sparks of joy at the dinner table.
You’re going to hear this a lot from me: Minifarms was created to inspire joy through food.
Here are a couple of a life hacks to make sure you don’t lose your sanity while you chase those sparks of joy at the end of your day:
Build up a small collection of simple recipes that you use frequently – they will become your go-to’s. Check out our recipes on the website or Instagram for some inspiration!
Keep your dishes really simple: 1 carbohydrate, 1 protein and some veggies or use recipes with only a few ingredients.
Whilst I am a big fan of cooking from scratch, I’m not above having a few bottles of Korma simmer sauce in the cupboard either. Mix and match a few fresh ingredients with a one “cheat”one. At least you are still getting fresh stuff into you.
At the end of the day, remember you aren’t perfect so don’t let best be the enemy of good. Start with small steps. Start Simple. Before you know it, the sparks of joy that I know well will be something you get to know on a regular basis too!