Now reading Fishy Food Face

Fishy Food Face

When you’re a city kid, a fish market is like an aquarium.

I started making food faces because my three-year-old Miles was driving me crazy by refusing to eat breakfast. When I made his food look like a face—frozen mini waffle eyes, banana nose, syrupy smile—he gobbled it up. I wondered what other foods I could get him to eat with the same trick. Many experiments later, Miles is a fan of yellow oyster mushrooms (they make a cool pompadour) and garlic scapes (they look like eyeglasses!).

Recently, we went to the Lobster Place to pick out some things for dinner. For a city kid, going to a fancy seafood market is like visiting an aquarium. There was lots of excited pointing and asking about everything (octopus! sea urchin! sardines!), and I nearly lost him in the sea of aggressive tourists taking photos of oysters and waiting to gorge on lobsters and uni. Miles pointed to his favorites—shrimp, scallops, and squid—so we bought those and I added oysters and razor clams. The nice sushi guys threw in a small side of ikura roe by special request.

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At home, I laid out the ingredients, and Miles made a plate right away.

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I made one too and copied him, using a razor clam nose and squid for hair.

As expected, Miles devoured the squid, scallops, and shrimp. He passed on the oysters (“Too raw!”). But the biggest hit? Ikura! I can’t believe he loved them—he popped them into his mouth, as if they were fruit gummies. “Mmm! Fish juice!”