Monday, October 28, 2013

On Foodie Kids & Pumpkin-Eating

It's so yesterday to talk about cooking on a parenting blog...but here's the thing: it's also so tomorrow.  Every single morning, no matter how much I fed them the day before, those pesky kids wake up hungry. 

We are blessed with foodie children. That is to say, they get excited about things like crispy kale and mustard cod and curried chickpeas.  I say "blessed" because I don't in any way take credit for this miracle, nor will I try to explain for you how to get your kids to eat a wider variety of flavors or colors. Mine have got a bit of jealous streak to them, so if anything maybe their culinary adventurousness stems from wanting to eat what the grown-ups are eating. (This gets murky when it comes to beverages, of course; a discussion for another day.)

Like all of us, they have their aversions: Ruby wouldn't touch a mushroom if Daniel Radcliffe were offering it from his palm, and Bella has similar feelings about tomatoes. Louisa will beg like a pro for anything on my plate, and then will decline, quite politely ("no tank you") if what's on my plate happens to be lettuce or fish. 

Undoubtedly, if the kids helped to cook it, they tend to enjoy eating it. Ruby is a pro at making meatballs and pancakes. Recently she made her birthday cupcakes with very minimal assistance. Bella likes to make her own eggs. They are both all over the smoothie maker (hand blender).

A few weeks ago, we went pumpkin and apple picking, which led to a fantastic spate of family cooking projects. There's nothing like eating foods made from fruits you picked yourself. (Even better, I would imagine, if you grew them yourself. One day: growing fruit and veg is on my bucket list. Check back with me in thirty or so years...) Josh and Ruby made apple galettes, and 
caramelized apple slices. I made apple muffins, and then pumpkin muffins.

In honor of the national week of the pumpkin, I really wanted to post my recipe for child-approved high-fiber pumpkin muffins (these kinds of blog posts are supposed to have recipes!). Those muffins were fought over But, sadly, I can't, because I didn't write it down. My recipes are often devised by opening no less than three web pages, and then creating, in the bowl, a mashup based on what I have at hand. I have no fear of oat bran, nor sugar. (Okay, maybe that's why they were so good).

We still have another pumpkin. What pumpkin experiment will be next? No time for frivolous baking; there is still dinner to cook for today. Maybe a spicy pumpkin coconut curry would be just the thing. Or, on second thought, a nap.

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