I was in the grocery store a couple of weeks ago and I over heard a conversation between a mother and her (maybe) 5 year old son. They were standing next to a large display of asparagus in the middle of the produce section. Here's what I heard:
Boy: Mom, what's that?
Mom: It's Asparagus.
Boy: Can we get some?
Mom: No, Asparagus is yucky.
This small interchange really stuck in my craw. It took all my will power to keep myself from rushing the asparagus stand and saying very loudly, "Asparagus?! I love asparagus! And what a good price for this time of year! I can't wait to get this home!" Unfortunately, though I do like asparagus, it just wasn't on my list that day.
I've been thinking a lot about why this bothered me so much. It occurred to me that it irritates me because I have such a hard time getting my kids to eat their vegetables. If my child asked if we could purchase something green from the produce section (even brussel sprouts, "yuck". tee hee) I'd be all for it. If I didn't know how to prepare it, I'd go straight home and find a recipe online for it. I'd do this because I am invested in my child exploring new tastes and experiences with food and not limiting his palette based on my own preferences. He's already limited enough by my cooking skills; I certainly shouldn't be denying him a healthy option or even turning him against it by calling it "yucky."
I'm no expert, but this line of thought got me thinking about ways I've discovered to get my kids to eat foods they claim to dislike on first sight. Aside from bribing, here are some tricks that have worked in this house.
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