They’re hiding carrots in the school dinners in Dundee.
This may sound like something from Oor Wullie but it is indeed a piece of news that I garnered from The Courier last week. It gave me a burst of vitality as if I had consumed much-needed vitamins.
Someone at Tayside Contracts, which says it insists on balanced nourishment for the children it feeds at city schools, gave away the secret as part of an appeal to parents to ensure their kids eat in the dinner hall instead of the chipper. It’s all about tackling obesity.
Fair enough, then.
Having gone to school in Dundee during a different era, I can confirm that pizzas with concealed carrot were not on the menu.
I remember eating a lot of Devon slices bought at the shop across the road from St John’s High and I have a particular memory of microwaved cheese rolls that, for reasons I can no longer recall, I was willing to put in my mouth. Jumpers for goalposts would have been less chewy.
Now, as a parent, I’m all for conning children into eating properly. I’ve done it and I admit my deception without hesitation. One child believed “carrots are a type of sweeties” for years. It was hilarious.
Full disclosure: I’m fat but my children are not.
They’re surprisingly healthy and active kids, willing to eat fruit and vegetables after a minimum of parental lying, cajoling and yelling.
They would happily eat bacon and Scotch pies every day if I let them but they do listen and perhaps even agree, when I suggest that is not a good idea.
And that’s the real trick.
Getting them young and having some education about nutrition is vital, because we’re only going to be healthy if we make a healthy choice ourselves and start to limit the Devon slices at an early age.
However, I still like the idea of a sneaky solution, even if carrot pizza does sound horrible.
I congratulate Tayside Contracts and dinner ladies everywhere for their well-meaning trickery and wish them all success as shysters of the kitchen.