When dishes are flexible and the kids are in­volved, meal­times need never be a bat­tle­ground. These fra­grant chicken wraps are a per­fect ex­am­ple, and

The Guardian - Cook - - To Finish -

he ta­ble is the home. It sounds trite, but it re­ally is for us. My kitchen ta­ble is where my kids do spell­ing tests and colour­ing in while I’m cook­ing. I want them close to me when they’re home. And I want them to leave home hav­ing spent more time in the kitchen with me than on the sofa watch­ing TV. I also want them to know how to cook. So we’re al­ways in the kitchen to­gether. It’s a colourful space, with the girls’ art­work on a cord hung

Tbe­tween two cup­boards. And we’ve usu­ally got mu­sic on – on Sun­days we do Cerys on Ra­dio 6, and the rest of the time it’s Spo­tify. They have their say, their own playlists. Dorothy, who is four, usu­ally goes for Frozen, while Ivy, seven, and Grace, who just turned 10, are a bit more dis­cern­ing.

I think food should never be a bat­tle­ground and the best way to avoid conflict, I find, is to make cook­ing ex­cit­ing. I want my kids to feel en­gaged, to know their way around the spice rack and de­cide what they want to put in a hot choco­late. They know there’s a world of in­gre­di­ents out there; I want them to learn about other coun­tries through what they eat. Which isn’t to say that we buy ex­pen­sive stuff. Some­times I can cook din­ner for the five of us for a cou­ple of quid. But it’s still ex­cit­ing. And that’s the way it should be – food should be egal­i­tar­ian.

On a prac­ti­cal level, I like dishes that are flexible, and al­low for a cer­tain

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