Tuesday, October 30, 2012

Not So Happy Veggie Tales


     We like to eat in my house and no food group goes un-molested.  The favorites seem to be breakfast meats (that includes kielbasa, the finest and most versatile of casing-clad meat products) and breads (biscuits, pancakes, loaf breads).  That is not to say that we don't hit it hard in the veggie department (and fruit… but who doesn't like fruit?) as well, it’s just that tastes vary so much there.  Take Sass.  From the first moment the All-Hallowed-Broccoli passed his toothless little gums he pledged his undying love and unwavering masticatory attentions to its cold-loving crowns.  The boy will pick broccoli (or green beans) over a cookie.  We've tried it and it’s true.  Sprinkles, on the other hand, is completely uninterested in the verdant greens of the light seeking veggies and has chosen instead to pledge her allegiance to the dark loving tubers.  (A child after my own heart considering that I too had an almost unnatural affinity for a mashed potato as a baby.  Yeah…. As a baby… *Ahem*) She will continue to shove potatoes and kielbasa in her mouth until her little belly is straining at the highchair safety belt, belch loudly, and then reach for more.  I worry that her one-sided-veggie-ness will become nutritionally problematic.  Not with her iron intake (have you seen her go after a pot roast?) and not with her calcium intake (we are actually considering buying our own cow…. That is how many gallons of milk we go through in a week.) but with all the other important nutrients her little body will need to keep up its astonishing growth rate.  Last night at the table I watched her idly play with a bit of cooked spinach I tried to feed her, (she was putting it in her mouth and then slowly pulling it back out but never actually chewing) and I realized that helping her develop her taste buds may be a bit tricky. 
     I have found myself “sneaking” veggies into things, something I have never had to do before, in an attempt to widen her plant-eating palette.  Peas into every casserole, zucchini finely chopped into pasta sauces… but, in truth, I am only creating one, huge culinary lie.  Now, we lie to Sass about what he is eating all the time!  Green Bell Peppers have been called “Crunchy Green Beans”.  Black Olives have become “Black Pickles”.  But we lie to get him to put the food in his mouth and expose him to the flavor and it usually works.  With Sprinkles, all the veggie-sneaking is just a desperate attempt to make sure we don't have to start grinding up Flintstones to put in her milk in the morning.  Why is it that she will eat meat spiced with Cumin, Adobo, Curry, Thyme, or fresh garlic but acts like broccoli is the most vile and odious of poisons?  Broccoli?  The most delicious of all the green vegetables?  It’s not like I am asking her to eat brussel sprouts (Yummm!) or anything….   She gives me the “Are you trying to kill me, Woman?” look if any of the offenders from her ever growing list of “Things That Aren't Potatoes” ends up anywhere near her food pile on the table at dinner time.   It is a battle and I think I am loosing…. Badly.
     Do any of you have any tips on working with picky eaters or any guerilla-veggie recipes to share?  Because I think if I put peas in anything else Hubs is going to have an intervention….

C'mon Sprinks... Don't be a hater!
Everyone needs a little love...

13 comments:

  1. I might not be the best example of good mothering but I lived by these three rules about food at our house...Number one...I am not a short order cook....you will eat what I make. Some days it will be your favorite...sometimes not..that's life. Number two is a bite to be polite. You have to take at least a few bites before you tell me you hate it Hating it does not mean that rule number one goes out the window either. Rule three you have to sit at the table until we excuse you (there is more to eating at the table than eating so sit there,talk,learn about sitting in a chair longer than 3 secs so when we take you out you won't feel the need to wander around when you eat be with us.) No kid will starve...their taste-buds will change. Sounds like you are doing a good job of food disguise...that's the secret. She likes potatoes? Well mix in some other stuff with them..mash potatoes cover the taste of so many things... I had one that could have eaten bushels of pepperoni and jalapeno peppers from the time he was little bitty. He grew up okay. ; )

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    1. Wait? Little boys can actually SIT at the table? I thought they just wiggled and fidgeted... :) And I LOVE the "A bite to be polite" thing. That is something Sass can learn and repeat and maybe even remember?

      It's Guerrilla Mashed Potato Time!

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  2. Yepper they can sit...and actually behave( not that burping contests or trying to get one brother to snort milk out their nose didn't happen...it's was hard being the only female).....now the timing of how long is usually what you yourself can tolerate ..but the time I expected them to stay with us grew as they grew up....It is my firm belief that everything worth learning is taught at the family table but I digress. Have you ever pulled recipes from this site...it's a way to hide veggies in things that kids will eat...http://www.doitdelicious.com/recipes

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    1. Oh mah gah! I am so hungry now. I NEED that Freaky Greek Pasta!

      Yeah... Hubs has successfully taught Sass the "Burp Gun" maneuver... Yay?

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    2. Please...that Greek Pasta looks wonderful...just started a low carb diet...I think I would stick a fork in someone's back for some pasta.

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    3. Then I won't tell you that we buy rotini IN BULK because they will eat ANYTHING off a curly noodle.... :)

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  3. If you figure it out let me know :-) I have 2 picky eaters, and veggies are a four letter word. I can't even get away with sneaking, peas, carrots or anything other than "white" gets picked out of everything!
    Meara @ bodlefamilyadventures.blogspot.com

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    1. Why is it that a ground up, pressed, and breaded piece of chicken can get more love than a nice fresh green bean?

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  4. OOOH, I found this one on pinterest (the crack-cocaine for the unemployed mom) and even though I have not tried it, I heard it is wonderful... are you ready for this" "Cheesy tator tots" made from cauliflower puree! Here is the link and if you decide to give them a shot, let me know how it goes! http://www.ibreatheimhungry.com/2012/01/cauliflower-tater-tots.html
    Good luck! :D

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    1. Oh, Pinterest is just crack-cocaine in general... :)

      Those look faboo! I need to add cauliflower to my next grocery list....

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  5. I have a notoriously picky eater that eats pretty much nothing, and one that eats pretty much anything when she's in the mood-and some days she's in the mood for NOTHING! I get tired of throwing food away...

    I have no answers for you, just that I feel your pain!

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    1. I know! I always feel so bad chucking food. The dogs don't mind, though... In fact, they are both looking kind of round these days. :)

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