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What mums in other countries feed their kids

(118 Posts)
agoodbookandsomefizz Sun 02-Mar-14 19:18:47

I started a thread in a totally different bit of MN and got no response so I'm hoping the food section is going to be more successful!

I am fascinated by what mums in other countries feed their kids as I get so bored with all my English style recipes I would love to introduce my kids to new dishes and new flavours. I also can't help thinking that some countries have a much healthier way of eating (Mediterranean diet etc) and I'd like to know more!

I've even gone so far as wondering whether a compendium of classic dishes from different countries - which would include breakfast ideas and snacks could work as a recipe book? So this is my initial research. Ideally I'd like to come away with a bunch of new ideas for my own daily cooking sanity and if there are enough interesting dishes, who knows, I may try to put a book together (I've been dying to use my brain since having kids and this seems like a good way to do it)!!

So, my question is. Does anyone out there know of any classic dishes from different countries? For example I know that grated carrot salad (made with orange juice) is a favourite vegetable dish amongst French children....and after a few failed attempts my kids love it too as I also grate apple into it. Any more?!

Thank you!

Kudzugirl Thu 20-Mar-14 11:22:39

I used to have an Asbestos lined tongue as a child and regularly ate chiles on sticks! I am now more delicate and have had to retrain my palate to cope with heat Adora so I do sympathise.

squizita Thu 20-Mar-14 12:16:57

Kudz Many of the snacks my GPs made me as a child (Anglo-Indian-Portugese) are terrifyingly spicy to my adult DH! grin

I loved everything slathered in piri piri, sliced chillis on everything, sour lime pickle...

Maybe I was a strange child!

Kudzugirl Thu 20-Mar-14 13:45:39

I will join you in the strange child club Squiz grin. Your childhood propensity for eating hot foods chimes with me.

stuckindamiddle Thu 20-Mar-14 19:09:00

Great thread suggestion!
Am bookmarking to read at my leisure!

Kudzugirl Thu 20-Mar-14 19:21:55

I agree- thank you Agoodbook and there is a book to be written about it too. I love food culture. Such a fascinating subject.

The Guardian occasionally do good photo essays on this type of subject but a big meaty book with interviews, pics and recipes would be something I'd buy in a New York minute.

DracuLaura Thu 20-Mar-14 19:51:30

I luffs this thread.

Blu Thu 20-Mar-14 20:10:23

I worked on a farm in Norway - brown cheese every morning - ekte Gjetost, mysost, flotost, flotemysost, and some particularly hardcore stuff; gammelost (old cheese).

Cinnamon buns at 11 am.

And rhubarb (or plum) soup for a starter for lunch, followed by cornflakes for desert.

This is what the kids ate, too.

Kudzugirl Thu 20-Mar-14 20:24:14

We get some decent Norwegian cheeses where we are. One has a totally unpronounceable name and is from the Arctic Circle. I love it as it has a sharp rhimey taste and big holes. It looks like a cartoon cheese from Tom N Jerry.

I have cheese envy Blu.

AmericasTorturedBrow Fri 21-Mar-14 12:26:00

I'd buy this book too!

Talking of weird childhood tastes - from toddlerhood I would happily much my way through a whole lemon, skin and all

Round the corner from our house (we live in LA) there's a shopping plaza with a Chipotle (Mexican) and Blaze (pizza) both cheap and quick bistro sylte "fast food" but pretty healthy - DS always has pepperoni pizza but DD (2yo) is obsessed with the cilantro and lime rice with black beans and guacamole. She's normally a fussy little thing but could eat mexican food all day long...she was weaned on fish tacos mainly!

Kudzugirl Fri 21-Mar-14 13:23:31

Wow Americas That is some snack! My Mother used to drink vinegar shock.

I am doing a dance of triumphance because i have just been sent a parcel of dried chiles from New Mexico- I have friends there. So pleased.

I do think Mexican and Tex mex is very kid friendly- lots of little bits and pieces, good flavour mix and it feels snacky. Black beans and Pinto beans are VERY kid friendly. I was weaned on them, my own children were too. Like you said, s squeeze of lime on rice (or beans) and they are off!

AmericasTorturedBrow Fri 21-Mar-14 13:46:52

on the same sort of theme - both DC have always been really into lentils and chicken liver, in the UK I made it into a casserole but here they gobble up Down'n'Dirty Cajun Rice

holmessweetholmes Fri 21-Mar-14 13:54:29

Great thread! I'm afraid I don't really have anything new to add but am loving reading about the dishes.
My dc are not dreadfully fussy but would definitely refuse to try some of the things mentioned. I guess you just have to keep offering them new things anyway. Must get out of my culinary rut!

Turquoisetamborine Fri 21-Mar-14 14:07:59

We had a Sri Lankan nanny who would cook whatever we asked her to. Mostly chipped potatoes as she called them but also gorgeous veg curries. Loved her.

Kudzugirl Fri 21-Mar-14 22:10:04

I always loved my Merenda- the after school late afternoon snack given to children in Latin countries. We used to have the previously mentioned Tortilla with a smear of refried beans inside or a cup of hot chocolate with ragged pieces of flour torilla dipped in honey and fried. The Mexicans have such a sweet tooth. If our housekeeper was feeling especially generous we'd have Sopapillas.

In France it is called a Gouter and may consist of a Ficelle or Baguette end;, eaten as it comes on the way home from class. Sometimes dipped in hot chocolate or a cup of pretend coffee- hot milk with a stain of coffee. I don't drink milk so the latter was out but we'd often have a tartine spread wit conserve although having a tartine for anything other than breakfast was seen as a serious lapse of judgement and an even worse lapse in taste.

AdoraBell Sat 22-Mar-14 02:32:11

My DDs love Sopapillas Kudzugirl, Sprinkled with a dusting of azúcar florgrin. I think Chileans rival Mexicans in the sweet tooth Dept. Here that snack is called once, 11 for a mid afternoon snack confused. And elevenseis is colación.

Kudzugirl Sat 22-Mar-14 08:20:59

Yes, Dulce Di Leche could only have been invented by a Central or South American!

We make Alfajores sometimes with it as well as spooning it out of the jar grin

What do you have for Colacion? Sorry I don't have Spanish keyboard settings hence the lack of accent.

kazzawazzawoo Sat 22-Mar-14 11:31:24

Reading this thread is making me crave all sorts of things I can't get out here in the sticks! hmm Especially cinnamon buns ... Need recipes!

Kudzugirl Sat 22-Mar-14 13:10:15

There is a great recipe for Cinnamon buns by Rebecca Rather Kazza here. The potato in them actually lightens them and adds moistness but not wetness.

Nigella also has a recipe here. Any recipe for Schnecken will do too.

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