I owe emails and replies, but first: I love Jamie Oliver and not just because he swaps out th's with f's. (Essex represent, 'ee is well fit, innit?) I think this is one of the most important videos a parent (or loving aunt or uncle, etc) can watch.
And just so you know, I firmly FIRMLY believe that "picky eaters" are made, not born. They will eat it if you give it to them, says this mother of three who have eaten foods as diverse as raw squid and octopus, all manner of curries, eel, any and all fruits and vegetables including DURIAN and bok choy, and a steady stream of lima beans (even though their mother won't touch those things.) My son begs for spinach and freaking butter beans. Why? Because I was a poor single mom (even when married to husband #1, lol) and I could grow veggies, but I couldn't afford fast food. 10 months old and my son would walk to the fridge and bang on it until I opened it and gave him raw mushrooms. No lie, his favorite dish was stir fried zucchini and mushrooms. At 10 months old.
IF YOU FEED THEM CERTAIN FOODS, THAT IS WHAT THEY WILL EAT. (You think kids in southeast Asia are born with a hunger for durian? Lo mein? No, they're fed that, and then that's what they eat. Ditto with mole sauce for Latino kids, plantains for Caribbean kids, etc. etc.) If your kids complain about you changing their food and diet to healthier things, tough stuff, cream puff. You smile, eat the good foods, and then let them walk away from the table. They get to complain for a few days. And then they'll eat. You know why? Because they'll be hungry from not being allowed to eat junk. And then you have kids eating good food, yay! It's not mean, it's not cruel, it's called parenting and it's a JOB. And if YOU are eating good foods, then it's likely that your children will, too.
*cough* Please see my post about me caring for my autistic sister who apparently has all sorts of food rules, to the point where she eats crappy processed foods at home - like, four steady menu items - and yet EVERYTHING I made her at my house, which was all homemade and fresh, she wolfed down and even had seconds on some things. Huh. So please. Please don't try and convince me that your child/child you know just won't eat such and such. Studies have shown that kids need to be exposed to new foods 5 - 10 times before it sticks, and THEN IT STICKS! Isn't that wonderful? :)
Whew. Needed that off my chest. (And for the love of Mike, if you're giving your kids soda, please stop. Just stop. I don't mean special treats of a soda - Sprite, root beer, sarsaparilla - when you go out to eat for special times, but daily sodas. That is terrible for them. For you, too, but you're a grown up, so I can't be bossy boots to you. Ha. Also, try making your own root beer - infinitely better and doesn't have HFCS in it, YAY.)
Remember: if it's a plant, or lives off of plants, eat it. If it's FROM a plant, it's probably best that you skip it.
With love, Stoney. :)
(And I'm writing up a recipe I made up last night for sweet potato and shrimp soup with some curry and little "tater tots" made of diced shrimp and sweet potato. YUM.)