Sunday, 5 September 2010

the war on crunchy green stuff

My two wander into the kitchen at least three times while I'm cooking, asking for a taste or offering to stir or mix or (god protect us) chop something. And they chat with me about their days, and things will be going swimmingly until a suddenly odd silence falls and I wince in anticipation of the dreaded question ka-thudding into my poor, tired-of-this-battle heart.

"Are there onions in that?"

Yes, I'll say irritably, yes, there are. But I'm cutting them up fine, see? They'll melt into supper. You'll hardly notice them.

"Huh", will come the unbelieving answer, with a definite tone of don't think you're going to hide those from me, and then I'll be watched as I massacre the onions into tiny bits of mush. Then the second question - there's always a second question! - will follow, and I'll grind my teeth silently while they peer into the pot and intone:

"What other vegetables are in supper?"

I have to stop and admire their syntax. While the general air of disdain gets the message across, there is no implied promise the vegetables will be eaten - no 'What else are we eating?' that I can hold over their heads, however clumsily.

Lately, the only vegetable not scorned is carrots. Raw carrots. And dip. And I'm thankful, but limited as to how many times I can serve baby carrots and dip and legitimately call it a healthy or yummy meal.

My children are fabulous little creatures. They even put their plates in the sink.

However, I've come to the conclusion that the gesture is less from my efforts to teach them manners, and more to hide the evidence of  the careful picked-out offending veggies.

They can't get scurvy and die if I feed them enough apples, right??


Anonymous said...

I can relate.....with your kids! When I was a wee bairn, I took a dislike to chicken and fought a war with my mom as she tried to hide chicken meat in everything.

Stomper Girl said...

Really? There's a limit on how many times you can serve up raw carrots as the vegetable du jour? Shit. That's the one my kids always get. Others are sneaked or forced in with varying degrees of fuss (dependent often on whether they realise they're eating them or not). But raw carrot sticks? Almost every day. Hey, the kids haven't turned orange yet, it must be okay.

that girl said...

i can relate. just this weekend i had one of my daughters friends over. she literally eats blan everything. drives me mental.

Loth said...

My two are just as bad - the only veggie they will eat willingly is sweetcorn (unless you count baked beans?) As you can tell from direct experience, however, this has not stopped them growing into large lumps of boy.

Jen on the Edge said...

My girls are like that, plus one of mine is allergic to apples, carrots, and strawberries and is incredibly picky about all the rest. I almost always serve at least two kinds of veggies and a fruit with dinner, plus they have a fruit with breakfast and a fruit or veggie with lunch. For breakfast and lunch, I give them stuff I know they'll like and eat. For dinner, I'm not so nice and they have to eat at least three bites of everything I serve them. I don't expect them to eat it all, but they have to have some. It doesn't make me very popular -- they'll be getting cauliflower gratin with dinner tonight -- but I figure that they'll eventually come around to my way of thinking.

Always Home and Uncool said...

Sounds like your kids and mine are in cahoots. But I can't buy enough ranch dressing to satisfying their baby carrot dipping needs.

Kathy said...

How about just lying when they ask?
Q - "Are there onions in that?"
A - "Nope, no onions in there"

alison said...

Rachel can out-picky anyone on the continent. I'm sure of that. I feel your pain.

Mummy Dearest said...

Ha ha ha -- my kids do the same exact thing when it comes to onions! Same, exact! Love them.

Josi said...

My sister gave me a tip on getting the family to eat veggies. Put a jar or two of baby food veggies in a meal. She mixes it in with all of her casseroles, mac n cheese, roasts, meatloaf. It's a perfect way to hide the veggies in there.