Sunday, July 29, 2007

The Great American Supper Swap

The Great American Supper Swap by Trish Berg sets out to "solve the busy woman's family dinnertime dilemma." We all face different challenges in getting dinner on the table, be it a dislike of cooking, being away from home during the dinner-making hour, little ones underfoot or some combination of these factors.


My complete review is up (Monday) at 5 Minutes for Books, so click on over to read it and to enter to win your own copy. If you'd like to find out more about supper swapping, you can ask her a question this week. Trish Berg will be reading and answering your questions about supper swapping in the comments right here. She also has a website. She will be making her first national television appearance on The Harvest Show on August 7. Click the link to check for affiliates (including DirectTV and other regional channels).

20 comments:

Beckyb said...

What a great find!!! Can't wait to get my hands on that one!

Angela said...

Wow. How fun and useful. I sure hope I win a copy of this awesome book.

Robin@MyPursuitOf... said...

Looks like a great resource. I hope I win.

Beth/Mom2TwoVikings said...

We started a meal swap "club" within our MOMS Club group once a month. There's generally 4-8 people participating. And, from all reports, it has been a big hit!

Beth/Mom2TwoVikings said...

Back with a Q for an additional entry: I'd be afraid to make something that no one would like so - how do you pick a meal where the spices, ingredients, etc appeal to all participating?

Billie said...

This sounds like a great book! I'm wondering if there are healthy recipes included or do the recipes tend to have a lot of cream of....soups used? Thank you. Billie

stephanie@{Olive Tree} said...

This book sounds fascinating! My ?: Where did she come up w/ the idea for this? What is her favorite recipe to make for the swap?

Heather said...

Sounds like a great book!
How many do you need to make a workable group?

Trish Berg said...

So great to hear from so many moms out there!

Ok. On to your questions -

Q "I'd be afraid to make something that no one would like so - how do you pick a meal where the spices, ingredients, etc appeal to all participating? "

A We plan our meals 3 months at a time. So you sit with reciep cards and cookbooks in hand and decide on recipes as a group. You have ot be uipfront and honest about food likes and dislikes. I tell a funny story about Chili gone bad in the book.

Overall, this is never a huge problem, because you make these decisions as a group, and food can be tailored. My husband hates mushrooms, but I love them. So when Nann makes her scrumptious
Beef Stroganopff, she leaves the mushrooms on the side, and I can add them to my own plate. Simple.

We also make some kdi friendsly meals, like Baked Mac & Cheese, and add xsome we love as grown ups, like Pan Burritos. You can mix it up. We have a running list of all our favorites, and also try to add new ones in eqach month to keep it fresh.

Q "This sounds like a great book! I'm wondering if there are healthy recipes included or do the recipes tend to have a lot of cream of....soups used? Thank you. Billie "

A One of the BEST things about supper swapping is that you can tailor it to meet the individual needs of the families in teh group. You can use light recipes with healthier food with every meal, or you can have regular recieps with lighter ngredients (like fat free sour cream). Best advice? Find 1-2 other families who want to eat healthier like you do, and swap with them!

Q "This book sounds fascinating! My ?: Where did she come up w/ the idea for this? What is her favorite recipe to make for the swap? "

A My friend, Carla, approached me over 5 years ago to try and swap suppers with her and 2 other girlfriends. I had no intention of setting out to write a book, but once I lived it, and discovered the TREASURE of supper swapping, I knoew I needed to share it with other moms. I have had some gals come and go in my group, but there are always 102 otehr girlfriends who want to swap meals.

As for my favorite recipe? There are so many YUMMY ones in the book, and I also upload new ones each week to my Recipe of teh Week at my website as well. But off the cuff, I'd say Pan Burritos is one, and Grape Delight for dessert is the BEST!

And, don;t feel like you need 4-5 girlfriends to start. You can simply start swapping with 1 girlfriend or neighbor. Double 1-2 meals a week at home, and swap with her. She does the same, an dyou then have 4-5 nights of supper in a SNAP!

Ok - Kepe the questions coming...THIS IS FUN!!!!

Blessings - Trish

Trish Berg said...

TYPOS -

Sorry about the typos up there. I answered so fast!!! Please forgive a tired mom like me :)

Blessings - Trish

Jenna said...

My question is - Do your recipes have substitutions? (For the lactose intolerant or the Kosher fare, for example.)

Anonymous said...

We try and eat healthier in our home, not necessarily low fat, but we have cut out nearly all processed foods in our diet. For this reason, we do not usually make dishes that involve using a lot of canned soups, jarred pasta sauces, or other convenience items, which some make-ahead meal recipes tend to use with abandon. Do your recipes tend to use these types of ingredients, or are they mostly "from scratch?" I know I can make my own substitutions for canned cream soups or sauces, but then the recipe no longer becomes the simple affair it was meant to be.

Michelle said...

Oops!!! Jennifer, that was me above, but I accidently hit the button before I typed in my contact information!!! I'm so sorry.

Jennifer, Snapshot said...

Great Q's and A's so far!

I read the book, but I didn't even think about starting so small, with just one friend once a week or something. I may try that.

The MOPS idea is a great thing. Do you have any special tips for beginning an exchange in a group setting like that?

MommaBlogger said...

That really does sound like a good idea. I would love to win a copy.

MommaBlogger said...

I think I would want to start with one friend one day a week, just to keep it simple to start. I don't know a lot of ladies nearby, so it would be difficult right away. But it could be interesting to have something different once a week, that's not normally made in our house.

Megan said...

LOVE this idea. During the summer months, we'll often eat with friends and/or neighbors one night during the week and have them over another night. You're making the same amount of food AND you get a night off from dishes.

Naomi said...

How many participants do you need to make the supper swap work?

Thyen Party of Four said...

I've often thought this would be a fun thing to do with our MOMS Group! I'm glad someone organized it and put it in to print for reference!! YEAH!! I'd love to win a copy!!! :)

Trish Berg said...

LOVE the Q & A!

Ok. I thought I'd address them one by one, and you can let me know if I missed yours.

1)Q "My question is - Do your recipes have substitutions? (For the lactose intolerant or the Kosher fare, for example.)"

A The recipes in the book are typical family recipes. They can be tailored with low fat ingredients. Most are from scratch, but some use convenient foods.

If you would like to swap Kosher meals or lactose free ones, all you need to do is get with a friend or neighbor who also wants to swap those types of meals.

The recipes in the book are only a starting place, the ones we love, not necessarily what you will or should use exclusively of other receips.

Each family, each swapping group can absolutely adapt their group to meet their needs, food wise, delievry wise, portion size wise. That is what is so awesome - you make it what you want!

In our group alone, we have 1 stay at home mom, 2 workign moms, and one part-time working mom. It works for us all!

2)Q "We try and eat healthier in our home, not necessarily low fat, but we have cut out nearly all processed foods in our diet. Etc...

A (See above) Again you can absolutely tailor you swap group to meet these needs. My best advice is to find another family with the same eating desires, and swap with them!

3) Q "The MOPS idea is a great thing. Do you have any special tips for beginning an exchange in a group setting like that? "

A All you need to make supper swapping successful is one common meeting place. If you live nearby, you can deliver your meals by dropping them off daily.

I live on a 200 acre beef cattle farm in a rural area. My swapping girlfriends all live 3-10 miles away. So I drive to deliver the meals. It takes me 20-30 minutes to deliver.

But my sister-in-law swaps with her next door neighbor and one across the street in her development. They put the meals in a wagon and wlak them over!

If you attend church together but live far apart, you can swap once a week on Sunday after church. i.e. each bring your meals in a cooler to church, szwap in the parking lot, and head home with a trunk full of food.

FYI - My Publishing house(David C Cook) in CO got so excited about supper swapping, that they had me come and help them get their own swapping groups started FROM THEIR OFFICES! We set up several groups that now swap at work. On thier cooking day, each person brings their 3-4 identical meals and puts them in the fridge at work. At the end of the day, everyone in their group goes home with dinner in hand!

You only need 1 common location - home, work, church, MOPS...and you can make it work!

4) Q "How many participants do you need to make the supper swap work? "

A You can swap with as l;ittle as 1 girlfriend, or hgave a group of 3-5 families total. No matter the size of your group, you are still maximizing your labor and simpolifying your supper!

And, you can start small and see how it grows!

You can always add more friends down the road.

Ok - I think I caught it all. If not, give a holler!

Enjoy the Journey - Trish Berg