Christine Muhlke is the executive editor of Bon Appétit. She and her husband co-wrote the forthcoming Hartwood cookbook; their son especially loved it when they tested the salad and dessert recipes. Here's what she feeds him for lunch.
My poor kid.
When the other toddlers in his daycare group are eating fish sticks and peas, he’s eating farro (with olive oil, piment d’Espelette, and salt), chickpeas simmered with garlic and chiles, and a peach. When they’re tucking into a Goldfish snack, he’s getting more fruit. (Though I’m pretty sure he could live on fruit, especially since he refuses to eat meat, tofu, or eggs.) Does he dream of Pizza Bagel Day, when I give myself a break and let him have school lunch? Does he wish I were Amanda Hesser? (Don’t answer that, Max.)
Being a food snob creates extra work, but not really, considering that I’m eating that same farro with chickpeas as I type this. When feeding my son, I make sure to include a grain or whole-grain pasta, a protein like legumes or avocado, and some fruit. (My husband and I make big batches of grains and beans at the beginning of the week, roasting sweet potatoes in fall and winter.) There’s often something fun from the daily Bon Appétit tasting that I bring home for him to try—the only time he’s eaten chicken was when it was in Alison Roman’s Indian-spiced chicken with tomatoes and cream.
As for getting everything to daycare, someone sent me a plastic formula dispenser with three sections when he was born, and I’ve been using it ever since: The portion sizes are just right, and I don’t have to use/wash three separate pieces of plastic (or four if you count his snack pack).
Adventurous? Nope. Fresh and delicious? Always. If only I could have the occasional Pizza Bagel Day, too.
Photo by Christine Muhlke