Tuscan Chili

After reading this post, you will better understand why in the world I started a blog called “Family Food Roots”!

One year for our wedding anniversary, Bill and I were staying in San Diego and went to dinner at a little Italian restaurant.  I asked the waiter if the Lasagna was good and he didn’t seem too enthusiastic.  Curiosity got the better of me so I asked him why, and he simply said “well, it’s not my mother’s Lasagna”.  When I asked what made his mother’s lasagna so good and he got visibly excited…”she makes her own sauce and it cooks all day…” and on he went, telling us about the family recipe that originated in Italy.  I was fascinated and excited all at the same time.  That night at dinner, Bill and I brainstormed about a cooking show, focusing on family recipes and the stories behind them.  That’s when the title “Food Roots” came to me, referring most literally to the history of a family’s food.

A few years ago I became passionate about eating and feeding my family good, wholesome food without additives or bad ingredients.  I learned all about hydrogenated vegetable oil and high fructose corn syrup and found out why they aren’t good for us.  This is when my cooking and our family meals began to evolve from simple casseroles to more wholesome fare, fresh vegetables and more chicken/fish.  I began by cutting out trans fats and processed sugars pretty much all together.  At first, I thought it was going to be really difficult, but I studied labels and found brands for each item of food that worked for me.

I also had a little cooking class in my home for the ladies in my church congregation called “What’s for Dinner Tonight?”.  Thanks to them, I was able to practice my new found passion about simple, nutritious cooking for our families and have a lot of fun at the same time.

Now here’s another interesting note.  I don’t usually cook with recipes.  I just kind of throw things together and see how it works out.  Or I’ll take a recipe and change it around to be more healthy.  I see myself kind of like a mad scientist in my lab, experimenting with food ingredients until I find something my family will eat and enjoy.  For the past 6-7 years, I’ve been writing these concoctions down, without any idea what I was going to do with them.  Well, now I have an idea…

Along the way, I also realized how special family recipes are to our heritage.  My grandmother’s delicious rolls, Bill’s grandmother’s traditional Thanksgiving fruit salad and so forth.  These are the recipes that are passed down from generation to generation and enjoyed at family gatherings.

Eventually, I decided that I needed a place to share my passion, about wholesome food, healthy eating and heirloom family recipes.  This is when the concept of a blog came to be, and, the name evolved from “Food Roots” to “Family Food Roots”.   After all, my family is the reason I care about nutrition and creating happy, warm, delicious and fulfilling food and memories!

Now you understand what “Family Food Roots” is all about.  I hope you enjoy cooking and experimenting with recipes for your loved ones.  Email me if you’d like to share favorite recipes or things you’ve learned along the way and I’ll post them on my blog.  My email address is: http://www.familyfoodroots@gmail.com.

The photo at the top of this post was taken by my friend, Debbie Stevenson for a contest I entered awhile back.  She’s not only an excellent photographer, but also a gifted artist.  I love the way she captured the colors and wholesome look of my “Tuscan Chili”, which is why I’ve chosen this photo to represent my blog’s brand and identity.

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