What’s Cooking with YOUR Kids: Food for My Family

Sometimes I think that things are meant to be.  When I signed up for the Adopt a Blogger program through Dine and Dish, I thought I would end up with a blogging newbie.  Imagine my surprise when I was matched with Food for My Family – a blog that blew me away!  It was filled with thought provoking posts, beautiful photographs and delicious recipes.  I honestly believed that there was nothing I could do to help Shaina improve her blog.  And I was probably right – but I did make a new friend, for which I am thankful almost daily!

About Shaina: Shaina Olmanson is the home cook and photographer behind Food for My Family, where she shares recipes, tips, opinions and her philosophy on food as she strives to teach her four children how to eat well: seasonally, locally, organically, deliciously and balanced.

Mango and Onion

Mango and Onion

From a young age I showed an interest in cooking, watching my mom and grandmothers, peering around their arms to see what was going on in the kitchen. It didn’t take me long to start experimenting in the kitchen, reading through my mom’s cookbooks, asking her if there was something I could do in the kitchen while she made dinner. Because I showed an interest, my mom let me in, happy to share the responsibility with someone else. But what if I hadn’t shown any interest? What if I would have gone about playing outside, oblivious to how dinner got to the table every night?

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I knew once I had my own kids that I needed to share with them and invite them in the kitchen. My perfectionism would need to be pushed aside to allow them to spill, splatter and learn through trial and error because I wanted them to share in the experience of how our food gets to our table.

Peeling Mango

Peeling Mango

Even today with four kids, the entire family shops at the (way too crowded for comfort) farmer’s market every weekend together. We visit Trader Joe’s together and go to the grocery store as a family. When we planted seeds this year, my kids had a say in what vegetables and fruits we would be planting. I invite them along when it’s time to weed, water and harvest in the garden. They get excited when steam rises from the center of the compost pile as we add in the scraps from the day. I want them to experience everything, from start to finish.

I’m very aware that teaching my kids how to feed themselves is a lifelong lesson. They learn by my example daily, and it is a lesson that I know will stick long after they leave the house.



We celebrated the first tomatoes from the garden with a light salsa. Everyone got involved, and when it came time to eat, there were no complaints. They proudly talked about what part they helped with and how they had seen their dad add the pineapple chunks.


Pineapple-Mango Salsa

2 mangoes
½ pineapple
1 sweet red pepper
2 plum tomatoes
1 jalapeño pepper
4 green onions
3 limes, juiced
3 tablespoons fresh cilantro, optional
Kosher salt to taste

  1. Peel and dice the mango and pineapple.
  2. Chop red pepper, tomatoes, jalapeño and green onions.
  3. Mix together.
  4. Squeeze in juice from three limes.
  5. Finely mince cilantro and stir in.
  6. Salt if desired.
  7. Allow to sit in fridge for the flavors to combine at least 30 minutes before serving.
  8. Serve with chips, add to tacos or spoon over salmon or other grilled fish.

Makes 12 servings.


Pineapple Mango Salsa

Pineapple Mango Salsa

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5 Responses to What’s Cooking with YOUR Kids: Food for My Family

  1. The salsa looks delicious. It would be great on anything – fish & chicken too!

  2. I totally agree and admire how Shaina is involving her children not only in the kitchen but in all other steps that involve food. This is a great example.

  3. Ingrid says:

    My daughter has never peeled Mangos before. She will now! Salsa looks wonderful!

  4. Ingrid says:

    MMMM….Pinapple mango salsa! One of my favorites!

  5. Pingback: Menu Plan for 9/26/10 and Raw Honey Giveaway | Food for My Family

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