Chicago magazine--the Windy City equivalent of our Orange Coast--has an article by Carly Boers out this month about children who know and prefer real food in restaurants. The article goes on to create a revolting neologism for these children of foodies: "koodies." (Where were the editorial staff when the fact that this is a homophone of "cooties" came up?)
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A sense of wonderment pervades the article, as though "normal" children are not capable of liking cassoulet, and it grates, but it's not Boers' fault.
Children's menus in this country are an absolute disgrace, a vicious circle of parents who don't have healthy options because the children's menu is a list of fried, beige, empty calories and restaurateurs who only offer such crap on their menus because children who have learned only to like white carbohydrates and processed foods won't order real food.
Even restaurants with beautiful menus full of local produce will keep frozen bags of chicken nuggets in the back of the freezer, which means children aren't given the opportunity to try things they might like.
Fortunately, all is not lost: most children are willing to try something they make themselves, which means that teaching children to eat healthy foods can be started by letting children prepare healthy foods. Children are typically very curious about kitchens and cooking, which means there are teaching moments to be had.
(h/t to loyal reader g'kar for the link.)