Yeah I think this is how my mum used to do it, I’m going to interrogate her when I next see her about how she implemented eating habits.
We were very rules-oriented in our house and we were a bit afraid of her but I think she was fairly careful introducing new food. We all liked the main meats so if something was new it would be a different vegetable or a new sauce, so we’d have like roast potatoes, three vegetables and pork in cider sauce. If we didn’t like the cider sauce we could scrape it off or leave it and she might not try it again (or next time it would be dry for me if everyone else liked it), or if it was that bad we could just eat all the rest. If you know there are no alternatives then you’re going to at least try it. I wasn’t going to suddenly pretend I don’t like roast potatoes.
We weren’t forced to eat stuff we didn’t like though, so she must have been able to gauge what we found genuinely nasty (to this day, don’t try and feed me mushrooms), and what we were not fussed about. I got a bit bored of jacket potatoes and ham but when that’s all that’s on offer you eat it. I think it was only when I was a teenager that I started to kick off a bit, probably because my brother had left home and my dad worked nights so my mum chucked jacket potatoes at me about four days of the week (‘do it yourself’ was never an option, I might have tried it but my mum wouldn’t let me loose in her kitchen).
I don’t remember any disagreements or attempts to act up so all of this must have been drilled in to us before the age that I can remember anything (about four or five).