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Curtis Stone is winding down as host of Top Chef Junior, which airs its Season 2 finale on Saturday, but he will still be around kids in the kitchen, thanks to his two sons. At times, they've been his harshest culinary critic, literally opening their mouths and letting the chewed food fall right back on the plate, but luckily he's figured out some healthy and easy dishes that they actually love eating.
"I think the best thing with your kids is to figure out what works for them," he told The Feast. "It's got to be a two-way street. It can't all just be, 'This is what I want you to eat, I’m going to force you to do it,' because I don't think it's practical and I don't think it works necessarily. So you've got to find out what they’re into; it's a delicate balance. In some ways you can't be too accommodating either, you've got to encourage them to eat the stuff you know is good for them. Sometimes that means putting food down in front of them and saying, 'That’s what’s for dinner, mate. That’s all there is; if you want something else you've got to go to a different restaurant. This one’s not cooking anything else.'"
Looking for a new quick go-to that is a kid-pleaser in his household?
"They love pasta, I think most kids probably do," he said. "A spaghetti Bolognese is our big go-to. We serve that at least once a week. And I find in that Bolognese sauce you can put so much stuff in — you can have all sorts of vegetables, carrots, celery, fennel, you name it. You can put zucchini in there. It's a meat sauce, you don't have to stop and think too much about is this healthy or not. But it's a really well-rounded meal and you can cook it in batches as well, which I think is another great part of it."
See more of his culinary wisdom on Season 2 of Top Chef Junior, which airs Saturdays 6/5c on Universal Kids. Catch up on episodes online now and you'll be prepared for Saturday's finale.
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