Food Wars – Day 2
And the battle continues. I want to try to expand Annabelle’s palate a little with new foods. Or better yet, foods that she used to like and has suddenly become too picky to eat. So I pulled out one of my old breakfast favorite. Brown rice pudding. When I was single and lived in NYC I ate a lot of brown rice with poached eggs and kale. It’s actually one of my favorite, simple, meals. I’d make a huge pot of brown rice at the beginning of the week and I usually didn’t have time to make much for breakfast so I started making brown rice pudding. Beyond simple. Heat leftover brown rice on the stove top with some milk, honey, cinnamon and raisins. It’s a great oatmeal alternative if you don’t have a lot of time. I made sure to add extra raisins to Annabelle’s because I knew that at the very least she’d pick out the raisins.
It took a little convincing and letting her feed me a few spoonfuls first but she finally took a bite. And then ate the rest of it. Score! I’ll add that to my Annabelle friendly breakfast list!
Lunch was a little bit more of a food war. Since she gobbled the chicken the night before I made her a plate of leftover chicken,half a slice of sprouted bread with coconut oil, peaches and guacamole.
Annabelle used to gobble guacamole and she suddenly stopped. Avocados are so incredibly healthy that I’m going to keep trying. Anyways, she ate the bread, ran over to the toaster, pointed at it and said “more”. So I gave her the other half of her slice of bread and kept my fingers crossed that she would eat something else once she ran out of bread. No luck! Just bread for lunch. She asked for more bread but I didn’t want to give in and by that point I’d put the bread back in the freezer and the toaster back in the cabinet and told her it was all gone. She wasn’t pleased, made her way to the pantry and tried to convince me to open the door. I managed to distract her by giving her some dog treats and getting her to chase Wally and Daphne around the house trying to take the treats from her.
Afternoon snack went much like lunch. She had a plate of dried cherries and some raw cheddar. All of the cheese went into her belly, she got up, ran to the fridge and said “more”. I gave her some more. She polished it off and did the same thing. I cut a few more cheese squares and told her no more cheese. The rest of the cheese went into her belly, she picked up her plate, brought it to me and again “more”. “No more, eat your cherries”. She tried a few more times and then finally sat down and ate her cherries. She ate a fruit! Ha!
So dinner. Sweet potatoes are one of the foods we’ve struggled with a lot. It was one of Annabelle’s first foods and she used to love them. Boiled, steamed, baked, salty, sweet, she liked it all. Now she likes Alexia’s sweet potato fries and not anything else. So I cut up a sweet potato into little fries and put them in the oven. I’ve done this a thousand times and since discovering Alexias she has turned them down every time. I had a feeling that she wouldn’t eat any more of her dinner. I made Brussels sprouts in mustard sauce with turkey bacon and pork tenderloin. She’s had brussel sprouts before, but only as pureed baby food mixed with something else. I’ve served them a million times (baked, sauteed, in cream sauce, shredded, bla, bla, bla) but she’s never eaten them. You gotta keep trying right?
As expected she took a bite of a sweet potato fry. Made a very disgusted face, and spit it out and then ran away. There was no getting her to sit down for dinner. Annabelle went over to her toy box and Andrew and I got to sit at the grown up table instead of the toddler table for a change. Annabelle sat in both of our laps and looked at our plates between playing with her toys, decided she didn’t like anything and went back about her business. I always keep her plate on her table while I clean up after dinner just in case she decided to eat something else on it. She screamed to be picked up and once she was on my hip she pointed to the baking sheet with the rest of the sweet potatoses. She ate all of it and I put the ones from her plate back onto the baking sheet (she did not want to eat them off her plate) and she polished those off too. So she ate dinner on my hip, off a baking sheet.
Not ideal. But sweet potatoes are a very nutrient dense food, full of vitamins. So I’m OK with an unconventional dinner. There’s a lot of talk about wether or not it’s OK to let toddlers graze while playing or if they need to sit down for a meal. I’m ok with her getting up and coming back. She usually stays around the table but I feel that if I try to force her to stay she will just be more resistant and will be even more stubborn. Much like her mama. I am big on family meals though, which is why we all sit at the toddler table together and eat as many meals together as possible.
What are your tips on getting a picky toddler to eat? Any favorite recipes? Share your experience!!