The Gastrokid Preppie Handbook, Chapter 1: Chopping

Preppie, as in kitchen prep, that is. A recent weekend evening saw the kids squirrelly and the dinner uncooked. Pan roasted John Dory with prosciutto and parsley sauce was on the menu. And two kids (4 year old Desmond and 7 year old Violet) were hungry and in the kitchen. We gave Desmond a step stool (a sleek, bentwood ikea model that is alas no longer in production). We gave him a three food swath of the ikea butcher block counter top

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…an ikea table knife (from the Kraftwerk-like Data flatware collection that has served us well for 8 years)…

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…and a couple of slices of prosciutto.

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We gave the Violet a recycled paper cutting board from Recycline…

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…an ikea knife, and a bunch of flat leaf parsley. We gave them instructions. They prepped half the dinner.

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Despite his investment in the process, Desmond ate the prosciutto, refused the John Dory, and was satisfied with some leftover pasta with homemade pesto (along with some roast pencil asparagus). Because of her investment and wide-ranging tastes, Violet ate it all. Proud of everyone, themselves included, the late-30-somethings ate it all and did the dishes. Happily everafter.
—Hugh

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