My older daughter loves to cook, even though she's only 5 years old. Maybe she gets it from Mommy, or maybe she has a scientist's mind. If her "recipe" is something I feel she can genuinely learn from or I feel comfortable in her making it, I tend to allow her to cook under my direct supervision.
A couple of days ago, she decided she needed to make "Pretty Food". Well, this intrigued me and smacked of life lesson opportunity so I allowed it.
She took bread, cut it into circles, and sprinkled it with pink sugar. She put this concoction in a pink bowl and was very excited. She said "It has to taste good, Mommy! It's so beautiful!" Mommy that I am, Nutritionist and Chef that I dream to be, I smiled, knowing what would come next.
She took a bite, smiling at me with pride and anticipation as her teeth sank in. Until she tasted her food. "Ehhhh!" (her version of Yuck). I could read her thoughts on her face. Puzzlement, repulsion, and then, realization.
I explained to her, "Anielka (it's not her name, it just means "Angel" and I use it as an endearment), just because something is pretty, doesn't mean it tastes good, or is good for you. The same goes for people."
She smiled at me and nodded her head. "Ok, Mama. Can you help me make something else?"
She has been eating everything I feed her without complaint of appearance ever since.
In the back of my mind, I recalled my mother feeding me baby spinach leaves on sandwiches, beets, and a myriad of soups. And my young self saying "No, it doesn't look good." Ahh, how much easier it would have been for my mother if I had done this same experiment.