Sunday, April 26, 2009

Pumpkin Surprise

We've come a long way down the culinary road since Benjamin took his first bite of solid food. Sure, he may still be eating something that looks like white mush, but at least he's eating it with a spoon now. And if you replace "eating" with "wiping 99% of it all over his face and getting 1% of it into his mouth," then that would be about right.

Poor table manners notwitstanding, it's been interesting to see how Benjamin's tastes have evolved. His list of favorite foods include carrots, french fries, roast beef, shitake mushrooms, Asian fishcake, waffles, cheese, eggs, bananas, ravioli, chow mein noodles, and - most recently - what I like to call "Pumpkin Surprise."

Pumpkin Surprise is surprisingly easy to make - you mix a sauce of pure pumpkin and whole milk with pasta and veggies of your choice. I can't take credit for this meal; a mom in my Friday class mentioned it as a surefire way to get her picky daughter to eat pasta. I can only take credit for dubbing the dish "Pumpkin Surprise." After all, it sounds more palatable than "pasta and veggies with mushed-up pumpkin and milk, right? Ok, maybe "palatable" isn't quite the word to describe it. I'll admit that I'm not too fond of it myself, but Benjamin really likes it.

Correction: Benjamin really LOVES it. It takes him mere minutes to hoover down a plate of Pumpkin Surprise. And in between each bite, he pauses to cackle like a madman while making appreciative grunting and "mmmmm"-ing noises. You could say that Pumpkin Surprise is to Benjamin as crack is to crack fiend.

Because Benjamin requires ample floorspace on which to enjoy his new favorite dish, poor Oliver has to be locked out of the kitchen. I'm not sure that the pug is even partial to pumpkin, but I wouldn't be surprised if he were. He's never been known to have picky tastes. As you can see from the below pictures, the fact that someone else is eating it is usually a good enough reason for him to want a bite for himself.

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