She likes flavor. If Sammy could talk she would say, “Mommy please don’t give me plain broccoli. Put some spice on top-maybe some oregano and you can sautee it in some garlic and onion. And for dessert please top my sautéed fruit with cinnamon.”
*And I think it would come out in a french accent as well.
When we started her on plane oatmeal cereal, she took a few bites and then refused it. When it came to bland purees she tolerated them. But as soon as she tasted her first bites of butternut squash and leek chicken soup she couldn’t swallow it fast enough.
So we switched up our plan. Reading the books French Kids Eat Everything and Brining up Bebe (both of which I loved reading) we started using the logic of Baby Led Weaning combined with the French Rules. And now, I believe…I think, we are on a journey to teach our little girl to love good and healthy food…with Flavor.
Here are a few of the rules that we have used to expand her pallet and create an adventurous little eater. (I write that last line with hesitation…I mean she is only 10 months old…we have months and years ahead of us which will provide us with wisdom. But so far the rules from the books have really worked.)
Rule #1 We are in charge of meal time. We are in charge of her food education…not Sammy (she is only 10 months old, of course she wants fruit (dessert) all day long…I mean so do I).
Rule#2 Sammy eats what we eat
So we eat healthy, organic, meals loaded with veggies, fruit, whole grains and protein… very little to no processed food. And we have found that when we eat the same things along side of her, she is more motivated to give it a try.
Rule #3 We eat together
Rule #4 You don’t have to Like it but you DO have to Taste it
This may ruffle a few of your feathers, but if Sammy doesn’t swallow 1 bite she doesn’t get anything else (eek! I know!). At first, this was hard…but I noticed that at the next meal or one after she was not only open to that new food (maybe beets) but many times changed her mind and devoured the entire serving, because she was more hungry, not starving…just a little more motivated.
Rule #5 No Snacking
Sammy gets one afternoon snack and that is it. I don’t carry around in-between meals, puffs, crackers or emergency snacks to bribe her with in tough situations. I want her to be hungry at meals, so she eats good-sized portions and is hungry enough (once again not starving) to try new things.
Rule #6 We eat in courses and the “worst” or the newest food comes first, when she is the hungriest
This was HUGE for us. Because of course, who wants veggies after a taste of soufflé or mango with yogurt and cinnamon?
And here are 2 Rules I am working on…so I can model them fully when she is older:
Rule #7 No emotional eating
no rewards, bribes..etc Oh this is so hard! Because sometimes I just “need” that little taste of chocolate when my day isn’t going well at 2:00pm
Schedule meals and menus..I just think this French Rule would make things much more organized and add more variety.
And as they say in France…Bon Appetit!