Gawker Underminer: These Kids Make Us Say 'Yech'

Live from the pages of The Underminer: The Best Friend Who Casually Destroys Your Life, we invited everyone's favorite frenemy to chime in from time to time on various hot topics. That's right, The Underminer has a Gawker column now. But keep trying! You'll get one someday! You trouper!

For $40 a session, pint-size cooks can learn to make dim sum, sopas and baba ghanouj. On a recent weekend, Alyssa Volland, the instructor and the wife of Alex Volland, the restaurant's owner and chef, chose pizza for the day's lesson. But this wasn't a typical child-friendly pizza — frozen, on a bagel or dripping with pepperoni. Instead, Hanna Mandel, 5, set to mixing yeast pebbles, sea salt and extra virgin olive oil into an artisanal dough, which she topped with mozzarella and a nutty, slightly stinky Gruy

re before choosing a vegetable topping. As she kneaded, she talked about her No. 1 food, sushi, declaring, "Seaweed is my favorite part."

Alyse Mandel, her mother, glanced over with the pride usually reserved for straight-A report cards, and said, 'She'll try anything.'

Atticus! Atticus, sweetie, no. Put down that Encyclopedia on Wine. It's not yours.Oh! Hello there! Well isn't this funny that you are here at Whole Foods too!

Is that Ella? Oh wow, she has grown! She is so SOLID now.

And now you're here at Whole Foods, looking for nice nutritional alternatives for her, right? That's great. That's a good project. I'm glad to hear you are finally taking nutrition seriously.

No of course you always have. With your old school Flinstones vitamin-style.

Atticus! It's impolite to just grunt and point. Ask the fishmonger nicely for your tuna steak.

Hm? Yes, we're just having a light dinner. We were out last night at Per Se enjoying their $500 prix fixe Les Enfants menu. Frankly it's not as good as Babbo's Baby Buffet. But Atticus ordered his truffle oil and snap pea puree smiley face-pizza and then suggested a nice Burgundy for us adults! Among other things, he's sort of a Sommelier-Savant.

Gawker Underminer: These Kids Make Us Say 'Yech'

But we're just gonna settle in at home tonight. This morning we went to Quintessence for a light breakfast of roots, brambles and artisanal prunes, and then attended Toddler Alexander Technique. Then up to the MOMA for hisYoung Directors Workshop. Then we attended a grape juice tasting at Two If By Sea, stopped by ABC Carpet And Home to buy Atticus a mini sushi knife, and a "My First Raclette" kit for him. We're just wanting to educate him more about foreign cuisine so that he is well prepared for the Kid's Davos summit meeting next week.

Aw. Look at Ella reaching for the intestinally clogging Jello Brand gelatin. Such a little American! With such a little American body. I wonder why she craves such things. Since you are a SAHM you don't have to worry if the nanny is secretly feeding her Dunkin Donuts like I do!

Well anyway, it's great that you're here. It's a good first step towards nutritional help. Why don't I walk around with you and find some items to help you make the shift for Ella?

  • Stonyfield Farm's YoKids Squeezers Organic Lowfat Strawberry Yogurt in 8 portable tubes
  • Kale-dusted Pirate Booty with Mercury-free Ground Chilean Salmon Fish Jaw.
  • Mama Appalachia's Millet and Quinoa Waffle squares
  • and Whole Kids String Cheese made from the Milk of Hormone Free, Constantly Hugged Goats

    There. That will come to about 350 dollars. But it's worth it. I love Whole Kids.

    I don't want to give you false hopes though. Transitioning Ella into a healthy eater is going to be hard, at this late age of 2. I accustomed Atticus's palate to interesting foods by serving my family spicy and exotic

    dishes when he was still in the womb. Next time, you should check out the Whole Unborn Fetus section here. It was really helpful.

    At this stage, Ella's intestines may be so clogged with goldfish and pudding that a sudden introduction of healthy diet will send her swinging back to junk food. Like Carnie Wilson after her stomach was stapled!

    I would suggest putting her on a 10 day Master Cleanse. Just water with lemon, cayenne pepper and Grade B maple syrup. Her belly may become severely distended, her eyes and teeth may lose their shine, and she may slip into a coma, but it will prepare her for a lifetime of good nutrition. Atticus goes

    on a Master Cleanse twice a year. He loves it. I really think that near starvation brings him closer to children across the globe who are less fortunate. Something Ella could learn. If she survives.

    I gotta get going. Be well! Bye!

    Atticus! Time to go select chanterelles for our mousseline!

    These Kids Never Say 'Yech!' [NYT]

    Earlier:Come To Graydon Carter's Warm Inner Thighfold. Or Not. Or Whatever.