I’ve always loved to try new foods, learn about new customs and cultures, and meet new people from around the world. It all starts with my childhood, growing up in a family that is its own little melting pot—a zesty mix of Mexican, Texan, Sudanese, Russian, and Ashkenazi Jewish heritage. As you might imagine, offerings at our dinner table were quite eclectic. I give my family a lot of credit for exposing me to such culinary variety at an early age. Passover Seders always included guacamole. I frequented the local carniceria for tacos al pastor on Sundays with my father. Mom often seemed to yearn for dim sum or a good banh mi sandwich. And nothing hit the spot more than my grandmother’s kreplach soup followed by homemade tostadas. I still head straight to her house for that exact meal whenever I’m in town for a visit.
So now with two little ones of my own, I want to pass on my love of food and dining to the next generation. It has become my mission to expose my preschooler (Big A) and my infant (Little A) to the wonderful world of food this great city of Atlanta has to offer.
As a busy mother with a lot on my plate, we eat out a lot. Probably more than most parents do. The size of the “dining out” wedge of our family budget “pie” is a little embarrassing, but then again, good hobbies can be expensive right? Call us brave. Call us crazy. But for starters, having children that are really easy and well-behaved in restaurants helps, and if it looks like there might be an impending meltdown we take-out or cook something quick and easy at home. We’re also not afraid to bail out in the middle of a dining experience to sit in the car with a child who just isn’t up to form on a given night.
And since I’m sure I’m not the only busy mother out there looking for a little variety for her kids beyond the standard chicken tender and french fry kids meals, I thought I’d share our dining experiences with you. I hope you will join me and My Little Foodies for something yummy, something typical, something unusual, something convenient, something fun, something quick, something crazy, and something that you never thought you or your kids would even try and enjoy. Adventure along with me and My Little Foodies to try some amazing new places, exciting and (usually) healthy dishes, and most importantly, to expose your children to the melting pot of cultures, customs, and cuisine right here in our own backyard.
Perhaps I have created a foodie monster already, as my big girl (4 years) already knows the geography of the Atlanta dining scene. She is a feisty girl with a great sense of humor who loves her shrimp dumplings and edamame. Her first joke (right around 2 years old): Mommy: “Do you want some edamame?” Big A: “No, I want some eda-daddy.”
The fact that Little A (1 year) has barely cut a couple of teeth has not stopped him on his quest for yummy and delicious finger food. His cute little pincer fingers go flailing the second you sit him in a high chair. While he still has a long way to go in terms of tasting all the delicious foods Atlanta restaurants have to offer, he is currently a big fan of any Latin cuisine, especially if beans are involved.