At some point after college, you became an adult, with adult clothes, adult responsibilities, and hopefully, an adult income. You also developed a taste for adult food. Gone are the days when a quart of Ben & Jerry’s and a family sized bag of Tostitos Hint of Lime chips constituted an acceptable lunch. These days, you scour reviews for the best new sandwich shops and refuse to eat anything that’s not designated “heirloom”. Food represents a whole system of values to you, values you intend to pass along to your future free-spirited, perpetually barefooted heirloom child, Paisley. Here are some ways to raise your little foodie child into a bigger foodie adult.
1. Taste preferences are formed in the womb, so when you’re expecting, demand that your partner treat you to the most expensive restaurant in town, the one where a credit card-sized portion of wagyu beef topped with hand churned horseradish butter and two sprigs of watercress costs a week’s paycheck. Because of the waitlist at this restaurant, you should make your reservation 6-8 weeks before your child is conceived.
2. Eschew formula and processed baby food. Instead, make your baby’s meals yourself by pureeing fresh English peas, seasonal delicata squash, and wild foraged oyster mushrooms into a mush whose flavors are best described as bold and clean. Store and serve your mush in mason jars so that your baby gets accustomed to the rustic, foodie aesthetic she will eventually learn to love.
3. When serving your child’s lunch, always be mindful of presentation and service. For example, if your child and a friend are playing video games in the basement and you decide to prepare them a snack, bring it to them on a comically oversized plate, and say, “Here we have artisanal organic peanut butter with local boysenberry preserves spread on a rustic whole wheat loaf made with native yeast. Please enjoy.”
4. Involve your kids in preparing and cooking meals by teaching them to peel garlic, dice onions, and do any of your other least favorite kitchen tasks. Most likely, the child will enjoy it so much that they will be moved to tears.
5. Teach your child where food comes from and then ground her each time she eats something that is not locally produced. When you feel she’s been sufficiently punished read her old tasting menus from El Bulli until she goes to sleep.