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Don't hate, and your kids won't. Cook the liver – use chicken, duck, game or calf – medium rare with onions, then finish it with sherry vinegar. This "served alongside eggs and toast is a regular deal in our house," Zimmern says. "When we go out, [my son] always orders the liver mousse or terrine, and he adores it because we never demonized liver in our home."
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"Make your kids perk up and take notice at dinner" by braising seafood like octopus and cuttlefish in squid ink, which is "a fantastic, lightly citric and oceanic seasoning for pastas and sauces," Zimmern says. "We love it because it's such a deep, murky black."
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What's in a name? "Call them mini lobsters and watch the kids go crazy," Zimmern says. "A few buckets of steamed crayfish on the picnic table gives them free reign to get messy."
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This sounds like a hard sell, but tastes amazing – and has the younger Zimmern's stamp of approval. "My son's favorite dish on my food truck, AZ CANTEEN, is the veal tongue slider with tonnato sauce," Zimmern says. "His favorite taqueria tacos are tacos de lengua [Spanish for tongue]. Cow's tongue is beefy, well marbled and tastes like the pot roast of your dreams. Get on it."
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What kid wouldn't want to eat a tentacled monster of the ocean? As a bonus, octupus is "delicious, nutritious and easy to cook," Zimmern says, suggesting that you serve it in a salad with tomatoes, cucumber, olives and herbs, seasoned with oil and vinegar. It also chars well and can stand up to sturdy sauces: "Our kid loves it grilled."
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It's not only "the easiest meat for your kid to love," according to Zimmern, it's also "easy to raise and represents the future for our planet when it comes to dinner time." Zimmern likes rabbit for its mild flavor and clean mouth feel. He braises the meat with wine and vegetables and uses leftovers to toss with pasta.
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WILD ABOUT FOOD
As host of Travel Channel's Bizarre Foods and father to young son Noah, Andrew Zimmern knows what it takes to expand a child's curiosity about food. And with the release of his new book, Andrew Zimmern's Field Guide to Exceptionally Weird, Wild, and Wonderful Foods: An Intrepid Eater's Digest, on sale now, he shares that expertise with readers of all ages.