The moment before leaving the quiet oasis of work before entering the maelstrom of traffic outside is akin to standing on the high diving board looking down at the water below knowing that sooner rather than later you are going to have to jump. Arriving at school I was deliciously greeted with Valentine chocolate hearts from three of the best people on God’s green earth. The feeling of euphoria lasted until an hour’s worth of Eye Spy in gridlock ran out at the same time as my patience with the commute. Why, instead of inventing Google, doesn’t some brilliant young thing make the Star Trek Transporter instead?
Determined to redeem good mommy status by preparing a dinner filled to the brim with nutritious goodness, I arrived home with best of intentions. Child 1 and 3 were fast asleep; however Child 2 expressed an interest in cauliflower, of all things. I brought my jazzy pink laptop into the kitchen and booted up Google, the trusty search engine. I ended up with a cauliflower and tuna bake that seemed easy enough. Things to note here: I have never cooked a cauliflower; I hate them for being bland and tasteless. Also, I wasn’t in the mood for making cheese sauce from scratch so I fell back on my trusty Ina Paarman Cheese Sauce. What I ended up with was a revolting mush that not even the dogs would eat. Child has gone to bed with Bovril toast and bacon. Waste of good cheese sauce and tuna so will have to make cheese from scratch for Mac and Cheese standby tomorrow.
I asked my husband to taste it and he said, “Um, it tastes like cauliflower why don’t you try it?” and I did, only to concede that I had outdone the natural revoltingness of the vegetable. He bellowed with relieved laughter and said that either we had reached a new level of love and trust in our relationship or he was just sh*t scared of me, because he’d have eaten it if I asked him too. The very best Valentine ever! Small boy aged 6 bravely surrendered to a taste before running crazily out the kitchen and into the garden where it was disposed of. “Yuck, it tastes like flowers!” Yup, that’s cauliflower for you.
Lesson learned. When pressed for time, stick with foods your children are actually likely to eat. Children can hunger strike better than any suffragette.