Now that 90 percent of my friends have bred, I’ve found myself tasked with taking a child’s needs into account when I make my weekly food-delivery rounds. As a former picky eater myself I’ve discovered some potent weapons in the kitchen that children find irresistible.
Namely fat and salt.
I routinely resisted my family’s cooking as a child, but my parents made me follow one simple rule: You have to taste what’s on the table. You don’t have to eat it but you must taste it. If you don’t like it you’re allowed to make yourself some food (ahh, time for a delicious fried baloney sandwich.)
My friend Stephanie’s child Isabelle is as picky as they come. Over conversation recently Steph confessed that the little one gobbles up everything I bring over but resists her mom’s cooking mightily.
“What’s your secret?” she inquires.
“A million or so years ago when I was in culinary school as we worked our way through French technique and methodology a few things became clear: French food is delicious and their use of butter, cream and good salt are a few of the building blocks of their cuisine”.
I always have a pound of good butter, a quart of heavy cream and a dozen or so varieties of the good salts of the world on hand when I go to cooking.
I employ all of these weapons as a matter of course when I’m on the range.
Here’s a delicious sauce recipe you can drizzle over any steamed vegetable that your toddler will power down with the aplomb of a young Joey Chestnut Ingredients
1 T. Butter (Right now I’m using goat butter from our farmer’s market but a good butter that came from a well tended dairy animal will serve fine. If you’re dead set on using some weird factory of horrors butter substance then you’re beyond the reach of my help.)
1 Quart Whipping Cream [I’m currently using an incredible heavy cream from a dairy here in Central Texas.Hopefully you have access to real farmer’s dairy cream, if not, a good whipping cream from you’re local market will suffice.
1/2 C. Parmigiano Reggiano,freshly grated
*Saute’ shallots in butter for a few minutes til the butter and the shallots are brown
*Add heavy cream
*Bring almost to a boil. Be careful as the cream will try to climb out of the pan
*Lower heat, reduce cream for 15 or so minutes
You now have a wonderful sauce that you can use for almost anything. Pour it over steamed vegetables, use as a sauce for pasta or rice. Thin with chicken stock to make a lovely base for a soup[chicken, mushroom, potato etc].