Thank Goodness for Ketchup!

Thank goodness for ketchup.  Ketchup is like Mary Poppins “spoon full of sugar” for adult food.  Our youngest has discovered the magic of ketchup.  He uses it to help him eat the icky grown-up food that interferes with the Star Wars pictures on his plate.  He has figured out how to be a member of “the clean plate club” and earn his just desserts.

Inevitably he squeezes way too much on his plate even after I’ve warned “that’s enough….that’s too much!”.  Half of the fun of ketchup is getting it out of the container: glass or plastic.  The move to squeezable bottles was a great Heinz management decision.  It makes better noises and you can make designs as you squeeze.  I’m sure consumption went up at least 25%; a transfer from the plastic bottle to the dinner plate to the kitchen drain.  Remember how slow those old glass bottles were?  You had to really work at it by shimming a knife into the bottle or tapping it until you got the veritable big blob.  And then you’d twist on the gummy and sticky cap all coated from the last big blob.  Unpredictable and not nearly as much fun!

Not all of our ketchup goes down the drain though.  Our son genuinely likes the stuff.  He’ll use the same carrot stick just to lap up the savory sauce or on even bolder occasions, use his fork or his fingers.  Like father like son (well maybe not quite so extreme).  My husband “eats” artichokes as a means to the coveted Hollandaise sauce.  “Why else would the leaves be shaped like tiny ladles?” he asked.  He was disappointed when I served up our first artichokes with a dainty little cup of butter; that’s how our family ate them but he didn’t say anything (smart newly wed).  The next time I had these prickly items steaming in the pan, I noticed that he had cracked open the “Joy of Cooking” and started looking for a whisk.  We have a deal now.  I buy the artichokes and he cooks the Hollandaise sauce.

Either some things just taste better with a little special sauce or something is wrong with my cooking.  I glance at child #1 and he is holding his nose with a mouthful of milk and child #2 is coloring his food red.  My husband is eating everything so it can’t be too bad?