Friday, April 13, 2012

Teaching Kids To Not Pick On Their Foods

Children love to eat food that they have made themselves. 
It is not only a fun activity but children also learn 
how to respect where food comes from.

Teaching my daughter not to pick on her food can be difficult. On my previous post The Rants Of A Mother Against Jollibee, I talked about my daughter’s daily cravings for Jollibee’s Chicken Joy and how hard it is for me to make her eat healthy and nutritious home cooked meals. However, I discovered a way to trick my daughter to eat food especially vegetables. Here are some practical ways that will make them eat whatever dinner you serve in front of them:

1. Cook vegetable in ways that kids will like. Normally, kids love their foods fried so I have devised a way to cook vegetables that my daughter will eat. Add shredded vegetables in the batter and make fried vegetable fritters (torta or ukoy). There are times when I use squash, chayote or carrots to make the vegetable fritters. For the flavor, I rarely use MSG and instead use oyster sauce. My daughter also finds them tastier if a dash of All Spice is also added to the batter. Lastly, frying them until golden brown and crispy also adds to the appeal of the entire dish. My daughter loves to eat this vegetable dish with lots of ketchup.

2. Let them be a part of the food preparation. Although I forbid my daughter to hold knives yet, I still let her act out as my little kitchen helper. She is usually the ones who fetches me the ingredients that I need such as flour, sugar and milk. I have yet to introduce her to other ingredients such as spices and frozen foods but I think she is still too young to get these stuffs by herself. Nevertheless, I find that she enjoys eating her meals if she is involved in making them. Thus said, I allow her to help me in any kind of cooking preparations except frying.

3. Saturday is grocery day so I make it to a point to go to the grocery with my daughter. When I was a kid, I look forward when mother would take us with her when she goes grocery shopping. I have learned from her, via osmosis, on how to shop only the freshest and the best ingredients for our meals. And now, I am passing the knowledge to my daughter. This is the time when I get to introduce her slowly to the ingredients that we use to cook our food so that she will understand that there is no magic involved when it comes to preparing her favorite meals.

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