The Asparagus Thief

Written by: Healthfull Ever After

I am a health nut.  I run for fun, practice yoga in odd positions, shop at farmer’s markets for hours, eat and cook healthy.  You can imagine my disappointment when my two-year-old finally started having an opinion, which was terrific; but not so terrific when his opinion involved eating only French fries and pizza.

As a baby, my son would gobble up green peas from a jar.  He liked mashed bananas and smashed sweet potatoes.  Around his second birthday, he started saying “no.”  No to the apple slices that took me an hour to peel off the skin!  No to the yogurt he used to slurp right up.  What created this drastic change, and what was I going to do?

I turned to my pediatrician for an answer.  My pediatrician advised me that this was normal and to keep trying various fruits and vegetables.  With each meal, I put something nutritious on his plate, only to discover it on the floor or in the dog’s mouth.  I was at a loss and frustrated!

As the weather in Chicago finally started to warm up, I brought my son to the farmer’s markets and let him pick out the vegetables and fruits.  His curiosity started to get the best of him.  In a good way!  He would squeeze the lemon juice right onto the chicken before grilling.  He started to ask questions about the foods we were preparing.  Can he plant an orange tree in our tiny backyard in the city, and why not?!  He also started asking me questions about the tastes of these new foods.  I suggested he give them a try.  And, guess what, he did!  He ate it all up- the oranges, avocados, grilled fish, brown rice mixed with vegetables, quinoa, and broccoli! 

I did not have to puree vegetables and hide them in brownies to get him to eat healthy.  He even tried sneaking a piece of asparagus from a plate while I was photographing it for work.  I am so proud to call my son the asparagus thief! 

It turns out that the websites I researched, the doctors I questioned, and the recipes I tried, never mentioned the one magical ingredient that I was missing all along- having my son participate in the cooking process (as much as he can without burning down the house or chopping off any fingers)!  Now we have so much fun cooking, baking, and eating healthy together.

Here is my Roasted Asparagus Recipe. It is quick, easy, and delicious!

Preheat oven to 425 degrees

1 bunch asparagus- rinsed and bottoms snapped (let your child snap off the bottoms)

1 tbsp olive oil

1 tsp sea salt

1 tsp pepper

1.) On a baking sheet lined with foil, lay asparagus side by side.

2.) Drizzle on olive oil.

3.) Lightly sprinkle on salt and pepper.

4.) Bake in oven for 20 minutes or until the tops appear a bit crispy.

*For more easy, healthy, and delicious recipes please visit

Photo credits: Mandy Fayne

Posted on June 04, 2012 at 9:55 AM