Family, good food, conversation about the day- it’s almost so simple that in our daily rush, we forget about it. I definitely was finding myself falling into this category. My son is a notoriously picky eater, and my attempts at getting him to try things meant that mealtimes were starting to become stressful. I realized that I had to change my approach, and one of the ways I would get him to eat more was sitting in our living room over the winter and having makeshift “picnics”. He loved the change this brought to our routine and it would get him excited for meals! If I could get him to eat even a couple bites more I’d consider it a success, and so our little tradition has stuck. Fast forward a couple months into the summer and we’ve moved our picnics outdoors.
Lately we have been making even more effort to regularly eat together as a family. I’ve learned that trying to force a picky eater when they aren’t ready just won’t work, but that the atmosphere surrounding the food has such a great impact on our meals. I can honestly say that our mealtimes have improved and become a lot more enjoyable since embracing this and am so happy that I am getting the chance to make these memories with my family. I’ve come to appreciate that the chance to reconnect and share a meal is one of the most simple yet special ways to spend time together, and the Dietz and Watson Choose the Table campaign really encompasses those ideals. The company itself is on its 4th generation of family members who work there, and they exemplify the importance of what it means to share food with loved ones.
Recently I had the opportunity to sit for dinner with the Dietz and Watson family at “it” restaurant Morcilla in Lawrenceville. I was so excited because I had been meaning to try out this spot for a while, and let me tell you it did not disappoint! Not only that, but having a great dinner alongside great company truly made the evening memorable. Myself along with four Pittsburgh bloggers and five Dietz and Watson representatives got to chat about the food and culture scene in Pittsburgh as well as our own personal family experiences that have shaped what mealtime means to us.
The best part about all of this is you can easily enter to win this same dinner by acclaimed chef Justin Severino (who is also the chef of Cure). Four entrants (each with a guest), will be randomly selected to exclusively dine at Morcilla and have this same multi course meal that has been specially curated for the Choose the Table campaign. If you’ve had this restaurant on your list like I did, I couldn’t think of a better or more special way to get to experience it!
A little bit about the food I made for our picnic. For me, the easier/faster to make the better, but that doesn’t mean that I skimp on flavor! I made some simple sandwiches and crostinis served alongside fresh cherries. Mixing different ingredients and coming up with some new favorites is a take on dinner that doesn’t take a ton of effort but has a big payoff. I have a feeling the crostini will be making repeat appearances around here, it was a hit!
First we had a melt using London Fog roast beef with brie cheese and sliced sourdough bread (try adding horseradish for the adults). For the crostini I mentioned earlier, cut slices of french bread on a diagonal, toast in the broiler with evoo and topped with a mixture of honey goat cheese then prosciutto, this was so yummy guys!
All of the meats and cheeses I used (and that were used for the Morcilla dinner) were from Dietz and Watson. I highly recommend using them because besides the obvious reason of tasting really good, they offer great healthy selections including antibiotic free, nitrate free, gluten free and low sodium options to name a few!
Not only that, but they are partnered with the organization No Kid Hungry, pledging $150,000 as part of the Choose The Table campaign. If you aren’t familiar with No Kid Hungry, their mission is to end childhood hunger in America, “connecting kids in need with nutritious food and teaches their families how to cook healthy, affordable meals.” That is definitely a cause I can stand behind!
Don’t forget to enter here to win! Click here to enter the Choose The Table Dinner Series with Dietz and Watson
Below is a look at the dinner, between the drinks and the food it’s definitely a “pace yourself” type of meal! Everything was so good but if I had to choose a favorite it’d be a very close call between the dandelion soup and the mortadella pasta! Chef Justin came out to talk about each course and what inspired the dishes. I love hearing a back story and then getting to experience a final product. For example, the mortadella dish was a take on one of his all time favorite meals while in Italy! Good luck and (fingers crossed) that I’ll get to hear what your favorite dish will be!