I have a question for those of you who live with a partner, either with or without children. How often do not only eat a family meal, but the same meal together?
Jared (my husband) travels a bit for work, so, when he’s home, we try to make a point to share a family meal. But it occurred to me the other day that, although we eat together, we rarely eat the same thing together. At least, not without modifications.
For example, we both love tacos, but while his are made with either beef or turkey, I opt for tofu crumbles, black beans with sweet potato, or some other veggie concoction. If we’re grilling, we might grill some veggie kabobs, but he’ll also grill some chicken or a steak on the side. Big ass salad night? Sure, we both include some of the same ingredients, but the end results don’t look similar in the least. Even when we order — or make — pizza, we typically select different toppings. I don’t want anything to do with his pepperoni, and he’d rather starve than eat a mushroom.
There are dishes we both enjoy, of course. Crusty bread with roasted veggies, spicy shrimp pasta and blackened fish are a few that come immediately to mind, and neither of us is likely to turn down a dinner of grilled cheese with soup (because, hey, who would?). But if I had to estimate the percentage of meals we sit down to eat together that are comprised of the exact same ingredients? I’d go with about 25 percent.
I realize that much of that is due to the fact that I don’t eat poultry, beef or pork and Jared does (in which case it’s generally pretty easy to make a vegetarian and then prepare his protein on the side), but it’s also due to our individual flavor and ingredient preferences. I feel like the important part is that we carve out time to eat together (and, in most cases, attempt to have our meals ready at the same time), but it made me wonder how common that is among other couples.
So, sound off and let me know — how often do you and your partner eat the same meal together? Do you often modify the ingredients? Is it because of a dietary restriction or just preferences? —Kristen