Jeff and I have found a subject where we can't seem to find a reasonable compromise. So I'm turning to the internet to help me come up with creative solutions.
I love food. I love good food. I love food from different cultures. I love everything from a really good cheeseburger to the finest in haute cuisine. My perfect night out with friends includes going to a favorite food spot- tapas or sushi or the English brew pub down the street. I love to try new things. I have an adventurous palate. There are few things I flat out won't eat- tongue, brain, and that sort of thing.
Jeff likes crappy food. Jeff likes junk food and fast food. Jeff likes bland food. The only "seasoning" Jeff will ever choose is onion. Jeff thinks of himself as a meat and potatoes guy- as long as you don't do anything to the meat or the potatoes to make them flavorful.
We are at an impasse. We have made yet another attempt at eating out less frequently. And the cycle, yet again, repeats. I cook. He doesn't really like what I cook. He eats it but there is no joy. I have no recipe I can make for him that I know is his favorite. When his birthday rolls around, he wants Texas Roadhouse and cheesecake- not a homemade whatever. We've had many conversation about it. But we are finally starting to realize that there isn't a middle ground between us.
I love food. I love the complexities and layers. I love how food is enmeshed in culture.
He... doesn't. Food is just... food.
Last night, we were having a discussion about it. And, in the middle of a paragraph about his feelings about me making meals, he actually said the words "I don't like your cooking." Not that I am a bad cook. But he doesn't like how he perceives the way that I cook.
I honestly don't bring my love of food into my own kitchen because I know it would just go to waste. So I'm not exactly wure what it is he doesn't like. Especially since any cooking I've done lately hasn't really been cooking- sandwiches on the deck, eggs (made to order, in fact), chicken nachos (ingredients: rotiserrie chicken, chips, shredded cheese). I've been making food that I know the family will eat. And I make my own dish that I can dress up and fancy up any way I please. Adding peanut sauce and fresh veggies or putting pico de gallo with my eggs or slicing avocado on my turkey sandwich. But there are still disgruntled people in my house and the food is still not well received.
So this is where we stand...
I could make food for me and the kids. I've done this before. Jeff is then on his own- he can have some of ours or make his own food. However, this doesn't set the best example for the kids. Also, Jeff has a tendency to feel- or at least seem- put out by not having dinner made for him when it has been prepared for everyone else.
Eat out. Again, not the best example for the kids. Also, expensive.
Keep making simple foods like chicken nachos, eggs, sandwiches. Take the focus off dinner being any kind of a "big deal" and look at it more like just an end of day snack.
I just don't know. Yes, it hurt my feelings that he said he "doesn't like my food." I've been trying for a long time to get my food satisfaction kicks on my evenings out with friends or by making my own variation of the dinner we are having. But it still just isn't working. Something is disconnected and I don't know what it is. I do know this- coming home after working all day and taking time away from my family to make a dinner that isn't going to be appreciated or enjoyed isn't working for me.
So how do I change my attitude? Or what compromise do we need to make? How do you handle meals in your family? Are you married/partnered to someone with a completely different attitude about food?