Ok, so while it took me a full year to get back to my blogging keyboard, I haven’t been neglecting my knives and range. Er, that is, not too too much. Things have been sizzling and bubbling and flowing in my kitchen this past year, but not with the relaxed pace, super-thought-out, not-cooking-for-work vibe they once did. And while the responsibility lies with me for slacking off, part of the blame must surely also lie with the tiny little person that has (happily, wonderfully) taken over my life since last February.
I am no stranger to cooking for children, but this is the first time that it’s my own offspring, and I am responsible for all their meals, every day. Happily, my child has proven herself a worthy heir to my love of food. Since month six when solid foods got the green light, the little piglet’s gobbled down most of the offerings I’ve lain before her. It started with baby oatmeal, then pureed fruits and veg, then soft little nibbles like cheese and avocado, and now she’s sidling up to the table grabbing for bites of carnitas, collard greens, smoked brisket, cauliflower mac and cheese, curried chicken…(Can you tell we’re in our winter comfort food phase?) Nothing hard or super crispy yet, as the poor girl has only three teeth to her name, but it’s only a matter of time until mother and daughter can crunch away on salt and vinegar chips together…
And while I know this gustatory openness will most likely give way to some pickiness and possibly the dreaded (though hopefully only temporary) narrowing of food choices to chicken tenders and ketchup, I am loving my daughter’s willingness to pretty much try anything. Every new food is taken in, analyzed, and the verdict announced immediately.
French lentils: nope
Sour pickle: more please!
Fresh apricot: ejected like a beta tape
Cheese omelet: I need a third hand to help shove this into my mouth.
Pureed plum and blueberry: Like my Rhett Butler?
Not only am I enjoying introducing her to all my favorite things, but in this whole-new-world phase I can start to see her personality and preferences begin to emerge. She is her own little person, who, in addition to loving to point at any and everything, push chairs across the floor, and splash in the tub, also adores peas, spinach, cheese, and mango. And it makes me so excited to share my kitchen with her as she grows, to prep and cook and bake with her, and connect with her in a way I think only really happens over the mixing bowl or the soup pot.
She may not become a cook, but I hope that she will always love cooking. And I hope that she will always love cooking with her mom.