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September 29, 2005

Mango mama

Dropped in to Giraffe in Hampstead with Clem, my three-year-old daughter today for a swift post-ballet smoothie. My hopes weren't high - Clem's were: she was on a milkshake hunt, but nothing doing. Milkshakes must be perceived as downmarket, or certainly too plebeian for that particular strip of Rosslyn Hill. And as the charming waiter in Giraffe gently chafed: "Smoothies are so much healthier."

With hopes dashed and wrists slapped, we ordered up a Mango Mama and, boy, what a glassful. Mango blended with banana, orange and apple juice and a sexy swirl of strawberry that hovered around the midriff like a gauzy pink sarong. How do they do that? I'm certainly going to try it at home and feel very virtuous in so doing. But would it have killed them to whip up some strawberries in a glass of milk and hold the lecture?

September 28, 2005

Eggs Benedict

Does it bug you to be charged extra for the ham in Eggs Benedict? It bugs the hell out of me.

This is how it should be (Anglo readers, forgive the Americanisms, and substitute Waitrose for Matthews muffins and Duchy Originals or Denhay Farm for Canadian bacon).

Chips and mayonnaise

Don't get me started...

A friend of mine (whippet thin yet pasta-loving, chocolate-chomping, rudely healthy) took her seven-month-old for a routine check-up at the health centre yesterday only to be greeted with much sucking of teeth and "good" advice. "This child," she was admonished, "is badly underweight. What she need is carbohydrates - CARBS, and lots of 'em. Why don't you buy some nice oven chips and feed them to her with mayonnaise, and perhaps a little ketchup...?"

Why not? Let me tell you why not.

For starters, the kid has only just gone on to solids (current wisdom being that you should give babies nothing but milk for six months). Second, mayonnaise is made from eggs and anyone with half a brain and a parenting book knows you're not supposed to feed eggs to babies until they are more than a year old. As for the contents of oven chips (salt, saturated fats, chemicals that sound nothing like food) or ketchup... Maybe this HV subscribes to Ronald Reagan's view that ketchup can be counted as a vegetable portion. Fortunately RR can no longer harm anyone with his misguided nonsense, but this HV is in a position of power, providing (one would hope) a source of good, sensible advice for mothers who are invariably vulnerable about something as basic and sensitive as feeding their children. A little knowledge is a very dangerous thing. Clearly the health services need to be Jamie Olivered too, at every level.



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