Do your kids love to watch reality TV cooking shows? Mine do. I thought it was a good thing — though lately, I’m not so sure.

My wife and I both like to cook, and honestly, it’s one of the few common interests we have. So when our children began to take interest in a variety of these shows, we were excited. Here it was, a fun family activity we could all enjoy together! Little did we know what path we were about to embark upon. Here — along with photos taken by some Instagram friends — are a few things to watch out for.

photo credit: Meredith Rilley

It starts out innocently…

They begin speaking in a British accent at dinner time.

Usually this is manifested in phrases like ‘needs a bit more seasoning,’ and ‘I don’t think mine has quite enough sauce.’ It’s endearing. The first time.

They ask why you don’t own an assortment of specialty kitchen equipment.

It may start with the color-coordinated stand mixer. But soon it’ll be the kitchen torch, the mandoline and maybe even a sous vide machine. (Go ahead, google it)


photo credit: Richard Hill

Then, things start to get worse…

You’re out at the local family diner and they order ‘frites’ instead of french fries.

You cover by translating for the waitress, after you finish telling her that it’s OK that the chicken nuggets aren’t panko-crusted.

They request a birthday cake that requires fondant and, upon completion, four grown men to move it.

Never mind that they even know what fondant is now. In addition, they expect you to sculpt it into 1/20th scale models of their favorite pop culture icons.

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photo credit: Darren Johnson

Then, this happens…

You get a call from the school because they brought in a ‘mystery basket’ and challenged the cafeteria cook to create a dish for them.

The contents are dandelion greens, quail and kumquats. Admittedly, it might taste better than a corn dog and canned fruit.

They comment on your “plating technique,” and critically smell/examine a carefully assembled forkful before tasting it.

It’s just a grilled cheese, kid. And no, I didn’t use gruyère, sorry.

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photo credit: Leah Minium

And then, finally, the day comes…

They taste your meal, and resolutely declare “I’m sorry Dad, but you’ve been chopped.”

Hopefully, this is followed by them taking over dinner preparations and fixing gourmet meals for you. I’d happily take over dish duty, were that the case. Although I wouldn’t count on it. Perhaps they need to watch a few more seasons of MasterChef Jr. first.

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photo credit: Jeff Kelley

About Author

Jeff Kelley
Jeff can usually be found roaming the streets of Northampton, Massachusetts, pretending to deliver mail. Between deliveries he takes pictures with his iPhone, always in search of new ways of interpreting the world around him. His editing style ranges from minimal to outrageous, and constant experimentation, collaboration, and inspiration from other mobile photographers keeps Jeff motivated to try new things.

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