So, fruit. The packed-with-vitamins, portable, healthy snack of choice for parents … and, frustratingly, sometimes a tough sell, let’s face it. Compared with the unmatched appeal of a biscuit, it can be hard to convince little ones of the merits of fresh fruit sometimes. Although, I’ll be honest, having said that, some fruits take little persuasion for my two to devour by the ton. (I’m looking at you, Mr Punnet of Blueberries, and you Miss Bowl of Raspberries. You know who you are, costing me three quid a pop, or thereabouts…)
Nah, the tough sell is the humble apple.
‘Who fancies an apple?’ I say brightly, looking at the fruit bowl, which is overflowing with Braeburns or Coxes. Lips get turned up, heads get shaken. ‘I don’t like the pips. Have we got any strawberries, mummy?’ I remain upbeat – ‘No, no strawberries today. I’ve got lots of lovely apples though. Mmmm, jucy apples. Who wants an apple?’ No response. ‘Come on, you can have it whole!’ Tumbleweed. ‘I know, I can cut it up for you!’ A head twitches, a nostril flares, ‘No, mummy, I DON’T LIKE THEM CUT UP’ (that’s the scary three-year-old). Silence ensues.
I pause, and then, triumphantly, I pull my final rabbit out of the hat, ‘I know, what about … apple rings?’ Two heads swivel round and four blue eyes light up. ‘Yeah!!! We love apple rings!! Can we have them in a little bowl, mummy!’
And that, dear reader, is how to pitch an apple to a child.
To make apples instantly appealing, get an apple corer, remove the core, place the apple on its side, take a sharp knife, and slice into rings. Ta-da!
Apple rings can be presented on plates, in bowls, worn on small fingers, stacked, repurposed as comedy spectacles (see photo) and, if you pop a suitably sized grape in the middle of the hole, rebranded as a flying saucer (!) I know, I’m a genius *takes a bow*.