Help Needed in Parenting – 3

Do you give your child leftovers? Food that is about half a day old..say you make some pasta on Saturday evening, eat up as much as you can, and discover you still have some of it left..keep it in the fridge by night..and then take it out the next day morning and give it to your child to eat..because she loves pasta and secondly because you dont have to worry about cooking breakfast for her…

I do it..honestly..I even give her leftover rice, chapati, bhaji, dal..everything…

and I get flaked for colleagues in office are shocked, astonished and unhappy that I am such a horrible mom, who can give her 2.5 year old child leftover of the previous evening – their reaction is this ‘Tu kaisi Ma hai? bechari R’ (What kind of a mother are you? Poor R)

..while they will not even give then 10 year old and 13 year old leftovers…

I was like WTH??

A 13 year old cant eat leftovers???

My mom used to make lunch and dinner both fresh every day but if any food was left, she would ensure its shared between all four of us mom, dad, bro and me…when she started giving us leftovers I am not sure..but I always remember sharing it with everyone else in the family for ever…I mean, I dont recollect mom saying no we will eat the leftovers, you and bro eat fresh food…
As long as the food is good, doesnt get spoilt or isnt something that is likely to get spoilt whats wrong is giving it to your child..arent you teaching the child that its wrong to waste food and if its left over you should finish it!!!

No, apparently, colleagues in office feel

*Leftovers will give your child a stomach ache!
*They should be given fresh food because it tastes better and that will ensure they eat more (Not that R had any eating problems as such..infact she has the opposite…she eats TOO much…which is why I should give her leftovers..maybe she will eat less ;))

I dont really agree to the above reasons..

As long as I am convinced that the food is not spoilt, I think its okie to give it to a child who eats anything from the street anyways…Of course I didnt give R leftovers till she was about 2..but now I am convinced that her immune system can pretty much ‘take’ leftovers! But not giving your 13 year old leftovers??? you got to be kidding! and this 13 year old loves Chinese food off the street!

I think there are advantages in giving leftovers as well 😉
*You build the child’s immune system
*Teach the child how NOT to waste food
Teach the child that everything good/ bad needs to be shared among family..

So, what say, Do you give your child leftovers?


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23 Responses to Help Needed in Parenting – 3

  1. i do… n i have no qualms abt it.

  2. In what Utopia do your colleagues live? OF COURSE I give Sonny boy leftovers. If that's what we are also having. and with ABSOLUTELY no guilt over it either. :-DMy problem is that hubby doesn't like to eat same food for lunch and dinner. So as you can guess, every weekend, we have a fight! He wants me to cook something extra to the lunch menu for dinner and I'm like WTH?? 😀

  3. Hi,I am ur blog's frequent reader but never commented but this topic has triggered me to commentEveryone should train their children in eating leftovers, because my mom had never given any leftovers to my younger sis but i managed to train by my grandma. now she is very much adamant in eating fresh foods only. she wont eat the leftover lunch for dinner. there is no problem in giving children leftover foods provided it is not spoilt.

  4. Pepper says:

    What? We only cook once a day! Use the same food for lunch and dinner. A lot of times we use the left over for the next 3 days! And most of my friends cook once a week and then freeze the food. I suppose you'd think we're all living only on stale food?For us, half a day in fact qualifies as 'fresh food', not left overs.

  5. R's Mom says:

    @shruti: Right…even me :)@JLT: hahah I can understand that fight…RD on the other hand is a no fuss guy and even if I feed him the same thing for 3 days he wont say a thing :)@Yuvana: thanks for reading the blog…I never knew that such kids could grow up to be so finicky, but honestly I think your grandmom did the right thing 🙂 @Pepper: Darling, you live in the US..most people in US would do that right? but honestly, would you give your child (if and when you have one) leftovers? here mothers dont mind eating leftovers (which is actualy fresh food in your and my definition) but their precious children shouldnt eat them 😦 and yes if they ever read my blog and read this comment of yours, they will definitely take your case for feeding your precious husband with 'stale food' hehehe 🙂

  6. Swaram says:

    LOL Pepper. Aunties will def. hv a problem with u giving the husband stale food 😛 :PI think Dad and Mom taught us that too, not to waste food and like u say, how is it bad if the food is not spoilt anyway? Are they sure the fast food joints and other restaurants have made it all afresh for them 😉

  7. Anonymous says:

    What is wrong with food that's a day old. Even if its 3 days old as long as it is not spoilt?Why do women have this competition between them? Why cant we take it easy? And what do they do with the leftover food? Give it to the maid who would feed her children? So its okay for them to give 'stale' food to other children???Feel like filling up your comment space, but will restrict myself.Long rant..sorry for that.RS

  8. dipali says:

    As long as the food isn't spoiled in any way, why not?And some left overs definitely taste better via the fridge!Your colleagues are raising spoiled and pampered children I guess!

  9. well i had left overs and i am alive and kicking. so when i have a kid – am going to use that logicThe MIL i can assure you will not be thrilled though. she believes in "fresh" khana for bachchas even if the bachcha is the 32 year old man i married

  10. chandrima says:

    Tell your colleagues that refrigeration and preservation are techniques to keep food good and to be used by us later. What do they do with Pickles, Cheese, Curd etc. Don't they give their children to eat these things. They are generally much older than half a day! Come' on please ! In west many mothers don't cook for days. Kids get lunch at school, packeted food for snacks and their dinner is breads, ham, salad and cheese. They grow up healthy to the point to bring hom gold from Olympic games.Show them the definition of refrigeration from wikipedia and tell them that their opinions are unscientific and baseless. Period.Don't allow your soul to hear these guilt triggering, unscientific comments on parenting. You are doing a great job of parenting!

  11. Dil se says:

    I do it all the time and have never felt otherwise about it. I always make paranthas out of left over dal, previous day plain rice into fried rice and even make sabjis extra sometimes to be used for the next day.

  12. weourlife says:

    Here I cook food for whole week, so what do they call me. Horriblest mom ? My mom too cooks in bulk especially chole, sambar etc and we used to eat 2-3 days. In olden days when fridge , microwave etc were not an option it makes sense for eating fresh food,also food get spoiled fast in summer days but in this era who has time to cook instant and eat. Also does these ladies don't know the fact how delicious the food tastes the next day with it marinated inside the veggies, paneer etc.We cook certain dishes and eat only next day. Seena

  13. R's Mom says:

    @Swaram: exactly..thats what I am saying..whats the gaurantee that the restaurants have fresh food!@RS: long as the food is not spoilt, I dont think its wrong to give it to a child…and competition between women…Err..I dont know why its there..but its pretty much there in our office…today I made this for my husband and this for my child blah blah blah!And yaa give it to the maid option is always there na and of course you can please fill up the comment space as much as you want 🙂 its pretty enlightening to get other people's view on a topic like this@Dipaliji: yes thats what I feel..their kids may find it difficult to adjust to situations :(@Nuttie: hahahah! see we both are alive and kicking..and LOL on the 32 year old man being a bachcha..guess some moms are like that..infact even my MIL is pretty reluctant to give leftovers to RD…thankfully RD makes and issue and says he likes them better marinated ;)@Chandrima: no they have problems with processed food..its the 'supposedly-fresh-food' like dal roti etc which they feel should not be given to the children…I loved the example you gave of Olympics..what a unique thought 🙂 Sometimes, they honestly make me feel bad about giving R leftovers but now I know I can always turn back to this post and read the comments section 🙂 thank you@Dil Se: Paranthas out of left over dal..yummmmmm how do you do that rey? @Seena: babes like Pepper you are in the US so guess its okie 😉 and I totally agree, some stuff does taste better when its older like sambhar or chole..hugs to you 🙂

  14. Mama - Mia says:

    bah! thats BS! Ofcos i give Cub leftovers. now that i am at home, its fairly boring to cook twice a day everyday! i make more subzi at night and give him the same next morn with fresh chapatis maybe! dont listen to the idiots!cheers!

  15. R's Mom says:

    @Abha: you make fresh chapatis..good for you babes you will get approval from these ladies here 😉

  16. Ohh I give leftovers ..if its not spoiled why not? Sometimes,I make plain pasta or butter noodles just for my daughter and I save the leftovers and give it to her the next day.Whats the big deal. You know what..I even feed her frozen parathas.. Its not always possible to make fresh rotis..So,on those times,I give her frozen parathas..If I can give her frozen nuggets,why not paratha? And I so agree with you.. if they can eat street food,then why not leftovers.

  17. VJ says:

    Hi R's Mom,First time here… have just started reading your archives.My son is a little older than R and I do give him leftovers.I bulk cook dal and rasam for him as he loves his yellow mammam.I just cant afford to make fresh rasam everyday. He is the only one who eats it and so it would just go a waste and also I dont know to cook for just one person.(rather one toddler!)

  18. R's Mom says:

    @Suburbanmumma: Welcome here! Thats a great idea about making plain pasta and storing it…I should try that…then it will be semi fresh na heheheeh 🙂 frozen parathas? meaning you make the parathas, keep it in the freezer and next day morning reheat it in butter or oil is it?@VJ: Welcome here :)Yellow mammam how adorable! I had a cousin who used to love parapu chadam..she does even now 🙂 yaa its difficult to cook for one person rey…makes sense to make rasam in bulk..and you know something..I think rasam tastes better if its kept overnight 🙂 at least my mom's rasam does 🙂

  19. MiM says:

    i used to go the leftover way… until week-old sambar: bring it on/ rasam from five days ago: excellent.even my mil is all for refrigerating and heating whenever necessary. BUT!now i read somewhere that food should be eaten within two hours of the time it is cooked…now i cook in much smaller portions than what I used to. but i try and cook twice a's what i read on the internet:"When leftovers are generated from home cooked food, refrigerate them promptly. Contrary to popular opinion, food should not be left out to cool. If leftovers are not put into the fridge to chill within two hours, they should be discarded. Particularly large batches of food should be broken up into a series of smaller containers to ensure that the food cools quickly. If you put hot leftovers directly into the fridge, which is the best practice, leave the lid off until the food cools down. The same rules follow for foods brought home from restaurants and delis.

  20. R's Mom says:

    @MiM: thanks for the info..smaller portions I cook too..but just that if something is leftover, I definitely store it…and I am one of those kinds who would rather see excess food than lesser food :)I didnt know that food can be stored immediately after cooking..I usually let it cool before storing it..thanks for the tip 🙂

  21. MoRS says:

    I do. Infact I make chicken in excess so that there is leftover and it can be given to my son the next day. He loves chicken 🙂 and he is not even 4 yet.Ask your collegues to chill and not take parenting too seriously 🙂

  22. R's Mom says:

    @MoRS: Welcome here…I was just reading your blog and Venky is so cute 🙂 Marinated chicken does taste better na..thats what people tell me…yes I should ask them to chill!!!

  23. Vidya says:

    Missed quite a few posts here!!I eat and give the children too! Rice, chapati, pasta, anything. The leftovers somehow taste better;)It is perfectly safe because we take care to cook. We can never do that with formula food any day!

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