At our house I have developed a sort of game with my youngest two children(11 and 15).
The game is Who is Coming for Dinner? It all began one time when I had no inspiration and no idea about what I should make for dinner. After procrastinating a bit and loosely looking in my cook books for some inspiration I had an idea:”what if we had a special guest over for dinner, someone who we really admired, a famous artist, musician, scientist, historical figure, how would it trigger my inspiration to cook for that person?
Pablo Picasso was the first notorious person who came to mind, and since he was someone whose art I admire and who I think may have been a lively dinner guest, Picasso became our dinner guest that evening. Besides the basic information I knew about Picasso: Spanish, artist, cubist, not vegetarian, womanizer, passionate, lived in Paris, first half of the 20th century, extremely creative etc…..I didn’t know much more. I took a bit of time to look through some books and online to get more specific facts and ideas about my dinner guest, and then proceeded to create a menu which would please this colorful character.
Our dinner with Pablo Picasso was a couple of years ago, and I don’t remember the menu clearly, but I do remember making some kind of stew with a Spanish tint, fresh bread, dessert and good bottle of wine. The kids loved the whole idea, even though I thought they were going to think it was silly since they are not little kids anymore. We even had a place for our distinguished guest at the dinner table and the conversation was great fun.
This silly idea really had a positive effect on an otherwise normal weekday supper. It got my creative juices flowing and woke up our imagination, and yes we learned a thing or two about the maestro.
Here is a creative task for you to play around with:
Think of a character, famous person, hero, or someone you admire(dead or alive) and create a dinner in his/her honor or better yet invite him/her over.
-What is this person like? Where is he/she from? When did he/she live? What was(is) his/her physical condition? Heavy, thin, strong, weak?
-Is/was this person physically or intellectually active? Serious or funny?Do you think he/she would like to eat, and why?
These are some of the questions you can ask yourself when planning and cooking a dinner for your “hero”. Of course there are a ton more questions you could ask, these are just some the ones I thought of.
After you have answered your question proceed to make the dinner, enjoy your creative process and your imaginary guest.
And don’t forget to get your family and friends involved in your craziness, they’ll love it!
Feel free to share your ideas here on this blog