Monique (AKA Moniquecooks around here) is the best so I went to her class. She was specializing in cauliflower. Like any mom, I am always trying to figure out how to get my family (read: husband) to eat more things. But I had some reservations. I have to admit (sorry Monique) that I am uncomfortable with the notion of hiding vegetables. I believe in trying to get your kids to eat as many things as possible and then educate them so that they can make their own choices about what’s good for them. For instance, I myself do not like eggs. But I make scrambled eggs for my family nearly every Saturday because I don’t want my daughter to have those limitations.
Okay, so cauliflower. (Full disclosure: I am the only person in my family who eats cauliflower.) I went to the class skeptical. Two of the recipes (the chocolate pudding and the sliders) were so good that I was inspired to make them at home. My daughter plowed into the chocolate pudding. I made it a few times, fiddling with it to my own taste (no banana, more chocolate) and found it delicious. I also made the sliders, but as a meatloaf. I made some of it into tiny burgers for my daughter, panicked as I was going to serve them (they would taste different than regular burgers) and told her they were vegetable soup burgers! The first night it was a hit. Later, less so, but I plan to make another one soon. But here’s the real victory – my husband ate it. Okay, it was in a sandwich with lots of condiments, but it could allow us to introduce our daughter to meatloaf. Which I love.
Later that week, I was braising a pork shoulder into a ragu (I know, sounds hard! But really, really easy) and I threw the pureed cauliflower and carrots in when I got to the sauce part – and boom! I didn’t have to worry about serving veggies with the pasta.
So am I converted? I am and I’m not. I have not furthered the expansion of my daughter’s palate. But there is a certain luxury to serving your daughter pudding and knowing that not only is she going to eat it, and love it, but she’ll be getting a hit of veggies too. If you’re in a hurry, knowing that the meat loaf has veggies in it, takes the heat off of trying to get her to eat the peas she’s suddenly decided she doesn’t like. And if your child (read: husband) doesn’t eat anything, then it’s good to know that you can sneak them some nutrition. The bottom line is that parenting is about doing what you can for your kids. Sometimes, you run out of ideas, but you have to keep trying. Now there’s something else I can do.