This post comes to us courtesy of writer and Williams-Sonoma creative consultant Laura Martin Bacon.
What’s fun, easy – and gets even the pickiest little eaters excited about the season’s fresh fruits and vegetables?
Give up? Riddles! When healthy farmers’ market finds make their debut at your dining table, teaming them up with a riddle is a simple way to engage kids’ imaginations – and appetites. In experiments with my hilarious little tribe of nieces and nephews, riddles and recipes have proved to be a winning combo. Not every kid will love every food – but if you can keep ’em laughing, chances are they’ll at least give some new tastes a try. And it makes old favorites more fun than ever!
Here are a few of my original riddles (with kid-approved Williams-Sonoma recipes) to get you started:
|Strawberries: I’m a sweet, juicy red fruit who wears my seeds on the outside. I grow in summertime patches and taste great in everything from shakes to shortcake. Who am I?|
|Peppers: I’m a crunchy summer garden favorite that comes in green, red, orange, yellow – and even purple. You can eat me raw or cooked, sliced or stuffed. I’m not spicy, but chiles are my cousins. Who am I?|
Try me: Bell Peppers Baked with Tomatoes
|Tomatoes: Some people think I’m a vegetable, but I’m really a fruit. I taste great raw in salads or on sandwiches, or you can cook me to make pasta sauce or ketchup. Who am I?|
Try me: Farmers’ Market Tomato Salad
|Apples: You’ll find me growing in orchards, where I go by names like Jonathan, Pippin and Granny Smith. You can put me on your teacher’s desk or use me to make a filling for an all-American pie. Who am I?|
Try me: Apple Sandwiches
|Avocados: Because of my pebbly green skin, I sometimes go by the alias “alligator pear.” You’ve probably tasted me mashed into guacamole or in slices on a sandwich or salad. Who am I?|
Try me: Avocado Bacon Tomato Tartines
|Figs: I’m one of the world’s oldest known fruits, who answers to names like Mission, Calimyrna and Smyrna. You might know me from those cookies called “Newtons,” but I taste great fresh off the tree. Who am I?|
|Beans: I’m part of the legume family, but our vegetable friends have nicknamed us “the pod squad.” Some words that give clues to my identity include: pinto, edamame, fava, string, snap and green. Who am I?|
Try me: Edamame & Orange Salad
|Grapes: Walk through any vineyard and you’ll find me and the rest of the Vitis Vinifera family hanging out in bunches. I come in lots of cool colors – from silvery green to purplish-black. Who am I?|
Try me: Harvest Fruit Salad
About the author: Laura is a longtime writer and creative consultant for Williams-Sonoma and other well-known entities. She’s also the Culinary Creative Director of DooF (“food” backwards), an organization that uses multi-media entertainment, education and live events to help kids and families discover the magic of food. DooF explores every aspect of food – from flavors, history, science and cultural traditions to the exciting journey from source-to-table. Laura’s mission: to make good food fun – at home, in the classroom and beyond.