As you know I love interviewing French parents to give you a sneak peak into their family life and how they place food at the heart of it :) Today I would like to introduce you to a French mum I met through social networks: Marie Young, from Bloom with Marie.
I was really keen to interview her because not only she is qualified nutritionist but also she made the call to go for a plant-based diet, which is so different from the traditional French diet.
She was raised on a sailboat in the south of France, but she now lives in Canada with her husband and 2 little boys – Chance is 3 years old, Indy 5 months old.
After working as a professional sailor, a journalist, and a pilot, she finally found her passion in Holistic Nutrition and Wellness Coaching a few years ago.
Croque-Maman: What is your most cherished childhood food memory?
Marie : My mom HATED cooking, but there was one thing that she was willing to make in the kitchen: traditional French mousse au chocolat. She was also against any kind of kitchen appliance, so she would use a drill with a hand whisk attached to it to beat the egg whites…It turned into a disaster more often than not, yet spending that time in the kitchen with her remains some of my most treasured childhood food memories.
CM: What are your top tips to manage meal time and/or to promote healthy childhood eating?
M: We try to sit around the table as a family on most nights. I do not make anything special for my 3-year-old. All I ask is that he tries a bit of everything. If he is really unwilling to eat the rest of his dinner, he is allowed to pick 1 piece of fruit to have before bed – no other options!
I find that he eats much better if he is a little hungry, so I make sure not to have him snack too much, too close to dinner time.
Blood sugar levels are so closely linked to behaviour, that we make sure to include a little bit of protein + fat + carbohydrates at every meal and snack to keep him as even-keeled as possible!
I keep dinners pretty basic on most nights, which doesn’t mean they can’t be delicious. A combination of a grain, a green and a bean (since we are plant-based) with a tasty sauce or dressing offers many variations that keep us healthy and satisfied, without me spending much time in the kitchen.
I do love to try new recipes when we have time, and love to involve Chance in cooking and baking as much as possible.
CM: What are your children’s favourite dish(es)?
M: The dinner we have most often is a tofu and vegetable curry, served with rice or quinoa and sweet potatoes. It has become Chance’s favorite, followed by anything involving macaroni as a close second!
CM: Could you please share with Croque-Maman one of your best family recipe and any story/comment related to it?
M: It would have to be our go-to tahini sauce. We use it on top of rice bowls, baked potatoes, sautéed chickpeas, enchiladas, add it to tomato-based pasta sauces for creaminess, in wraps, falafels, burritos… and Chance loves helping me use the blender to put it together. You will find my recipe in the next week or so on Croque-Maman’s blog