Sara Whitman

Cooking for Kids

Filed By Sara Whitman | January 31, 2008 8:15 AM | comments

Filed in: Living, Marriage Equality
Tags: child care, cooking, kids, leeks, LGBT families, moms, potatoes

Enough about George Bush. I'm going to look forward, not back.

I know I've mentioned before how much I love to cook. I love food, textures, tastes, working with them, tasting something and thinking about all the different ingredients.

bacon.jpgLast night, I cooked a recipe Jeanine had picked the other day.

Jeanine is a great cook. But it's hard for her to think about flavors and textures when they are written on a piece of paper. The other day, when she was going to cook dinner for the whole family, we went through a whole list of things.

I'm making salmon with an orange vinaigrette. What else?

I shrugged. Well, the kids would like white rice.

No way, she said.

We then proceeded down a list of choices that included squash (too orange), lentils (too boring), and mashed potatoes.

The kids don't eat mashed potatoes. Ever.

What about potato and leek soup?

You're going to cook a piece of fish with a sauce and serve soup? (authors note: see piece on marriage survival)

Needless to say, she made a fabulous Parmesan risotto and sauteed spinach to go with the salmon. Incredibly delicious. (When it comes to putting spoon to pan, knife to cutting board, she is way better than I am at following a recipe.)

Yesterday, as I looked at her recipe she had printed out (and bought all the ingredients for regardless of my horror) I thought.... grocery store or soup.

Soup it was.

What I find funny is that while this country version was simple, flavorful and bright, it was also big giant chunks of leeks. And potatoes.

Nothing else.

My kids would never eat it.

This is the kind of challenge I love in the kitchen. What to do... what to do... how about pureeing it so they don't know it's potatoes, or leeks.

The flavor still lacked any kid punch. I am not ever going to cook another meal for the kids. One meal fits all. I always try to make a choice that they like- bread- or a flavor I know will catch their imagination.


Don't laugh. My kids will eat spinach with enough bacon in it. Sure, it's killing them but their getting their greens!

Just a couple slices, chopped fine and stirred in and it's a dinner they ate.

Where's the bacon?

It's in there. Keep eating.

Except Jake, who was the only one who would have preferred the original recipe, not pureed and no bacon, thank you.

Cooking for kids, when you love food, can be a challenge. I've been blessed with kids who have never weighed too little or failed to gain weight at a proper rate. None of them ever eat too much except Zachary, once, with cookies but after throwing up he never did again.

They've all learned how to tolerate a foodie mother who insists on their observation of each dish.

And yes, they get taco night on occasion, too.

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Sara, did you compose that close-up photo of cunnilingual bacon on purpose? Or is my subconscious dread-curiosity of the female genitalia surfacing in a Freudian-Rorschach sort of way?

(Am I being sexist by making a visual-linguistic joke about food and the female whoo-haa? I think not: How many times a day do we hear a man's you-know-what referred to as his "weiner"? Not to mention that three-letter n-word which, in plural, refers to his gonads.)

Either way, I assure you: Cunnilingus is better for your health than eating that much fried bacon. And it couldn't possibly stain the tablecloth any worse, either.

P.S. I will not even bother codifying the obvious joke involving tacos. --- AJL

Well, lookie there.

I didn't see it before but, I see it now! I believe it's my subconscious love-obsession showing up.

Ever read MFK Fisher? Food is sex, sex is food. All good.