I have settled into a very boring summer cooking routine, and I couldn’t be happier about it.
For dinners this summer, my family has been eating grilled meat or fish, a green vegetable, and a colorful (often raw) vegetable. That’s all there is to it, and it couldn’t be easier.
For years, I thought “routine” was a bad word, especially in the kitchen. I thought “routine” equaled “boring” and “monotonous.” But I’ve found that “routine” can also bring ease and contentment, as Mark Sisson discusses in his excellent post over at Mark’s Daily Apple. Mark talks about his own “monotonous” diet, and how he eats the same stuff not because he’s bored, but because he’s content with his choices. Thanks, Mark–I feel vindicated!
My own meat-and-two-veggies guideline allows for lots of flexibility, and having the mealtime structure in place has freed up tons of time and energy I can devote to other things during a busy season. You don’t need to be a seasoned cook to pull this off; you don’t even need a cookbook!
Grocery shopping is super simple–I can even do a pretty good job winging it with no list. I know that for a week’s worth of dinners, I need to buy 5 meals’ worth of protein and 10 family-size portions of vegetables. It’s that easy.
A “boring” meal plan works especially well if you’re accommodating special diets like we are, because you don’t have to continually scrutinize your menu items and adapt recipes on the fly.
In practice, I’m not finding my boring meal plan to be boring at all. Boring is bad. I’m not bored; I’m very content with my food choices. And food contentment is a wonderful thing.
Especially when it’s this easy:
Do you always eat the same thing? What foods are in your regular mealtime lineup?