Saturday, September 22, 2012

Sole with rice and veggies

It might seem like an odd combination, but this one is very delicate and has very little fishy taste kids might not like. In fact this is how I got my son to like to eat fish, well some time ago now. So if a child doesn't like to eat fish, this might be the one to try. At the beginning I was mixing it with rice so it was almost undetectable (assuming that child likes rice :-).

- Sole filets (I like sole, but any white, more delicate fish would do, I use fresh fish filets)
- frozen peas and carrots, a handful or 2 (If he/she won't eat it use frozen corn instead)
- milk to cover fish 
- 1 cup rice, 2 cups water
- 1 cup total of grated sweet potato and yellow zucchini, can be green, but yellow blends in and won't "scare" the picky eater 
- salt to season

Start with rice so everything is ready at the same time. Just mix in the pan: rice, water, shredded zucchini and sweet potato, season with salt, bring to boil. After it starts boiling reduce the heat, cover and cook for about 15-20 minutes until all the water is absorbed. Lest stand few minutes and fluff with fork. Might want to add a tsp of butter (optional) and other seasoning besides salt if your child likes.
Place fish filets and peas and carrots in a pan, cover with milk and cook on medium low heat. The fish has to cook on low heat, otherwise the milk starts to foam a lot and bubble too much. Cook covered for about 10 minutes from the moment it starts simmering. I don't add salt to fish. I don't add any seasoning here. Milk and pas make it a little on a sweet side.

Thursday, September 20, 2012

Pasta with spinach and ricotta

Another quick and simple family dish. Pasta with spinach and ricotta can be served just as pasta dish itself or with fish. Salmon (steamed or simmered in butter) is best match here.

For the sauce:

- bag of fresh baby spinach, I always make it using fresh, but I guess you can try with frozen too
- 1 tsp butter
- 2/3 cup of ricotta
- 1/3 cup of milk
- pinch of grated nutmeg
- salt 
- pepper

Start with boiling water for pasta so everything is ready at the same time.

Melt butter, add a bag of spinach and saute on medium-low heat about 5 minutes, or just until it wilts, when spinach is cooking mix ricotta and milk with a pinch of nutmeg. It should be smooth, no lumps. 
Add ricotta mixture to spinach and cook on low heat for about 5 minutes, just so it heats but it doesn't boil, to prevent clumping. Season with salt and pepper, mix with cooked pasta and serve.

Sandwich cutter

I have a set of sandwich cutters and sometimes we like to play with them. Here is just a basic sandwich with  egg and cheddar, in one of the earliest posts I cut the same sandwich into geometric shapes. Here I saved a piece of yolk and white before chopping egg for a salad to have "sun and cloud", added some radishes, green peppers and cucumbers.

Tuesday, September 11, 2012

Egg and toast

I learned last weekend that poaching eggs is very easy, no need for an egg poacher. Just big shallow pan and breakfast ready in 5 minutes. 

Poached egg
Half of  whole wheat English muffin, toasted and lightly buttered (or any bread, toasted as it will be easier to hold an dip into egg)
Some fruit or veggies, I used cucumber and pepper - my easiest way to to get my son eat those is: "wanna see what a funny crunchy noise they make when you bite fast?" :-)

I poached several eggs at the same time and me and my husband had them on an English  muffin with a slice of ham. 

 How to poach eggs:

Take big, shallow pan, fill with water, about 2-3 inch, boil. After it boils reduce back to "no boiling". Take one egg at a time crack it to a shallow cup and while submerging a cup into water quickly slide an egg into water. Add all the eggs you need (or as many as fit in the pan). Turn off the heat and leave eggs in water for about 4 minutes. Take out using slotted spoon. No need for anything. Some methods call for using vinegar in water to help set the egg, but vinegar can change the taste of eggs, I didn't use any and they turned out great.


I personally prefer to buy plain yogurt and fruit separately, instead of fruit yogurt. Every now and then there is some resistance... until I present the white police car, "exactly like the one from Grandma" ;-) Always worked. 

Pictured is plain Greek yogurt with a little bit of honey.

Wednesday, September 5, 2012

Mini pancakes with fruit and yogurt

Kids usually like pancakes and of course they will like it even more with maple syrup. I like to serve it with NO maple syrup at all, just some fruit and yogurt to dip in. Whenever making pancakes for the family, just make a few smaller size (bite size, great finger food). Serve with favorite fruit and yogurt, we like vanilla in this combo best :-)

Have the fruit and yogurt ready on a plate first, if your child loves pancakes, you might not have time to add it later!

Tuesday, September 4, 2012

Quick mom and son sandwich

One day we came back home tired and hungry, neither me nor my little one had the energy to cook! Here is what we prepared in 5 minutes for a quick snack.

Found in the kitchen:
- pumpernickel (any bread that doesn't crumble will do)
- butter
- mild cheddar, sliced (can be replaced with any cheese or even better, anything spreadable or mashed avocado)
- cucumbers (or tomato, peppers etc)
- blueberries (or any other fruit if you have) 
- sandwich cutter (or cookie cutter of any shape) 

Guess which plate was mommie's ...