Thursday, March 13, 2008

I am the cook now, you cook what you want to when you are big!

It took me a while but I am finally there. Finally to the point where my children rarely complain about food anymore. Where they finally understand that we will not be living on plain bean burritos. I used to get the comments, "Why can't you just make eggs," or "do I have to eat THAT" etc. Now, they know better. Now they know, as they have been told over the past many years that I AM THE COOK. I cook what I want to eat. They are free to live on bean burritos when they leave the house. Because we don't eat the plain burrito too often, my little ones are really developing a mature palate. They still love the burrito but they also are really starting to enjoy different flavors. If you start your children off early with good food and variety, they will develop a taste for these foods, most of the time. I hear all of the time, "My child will only eat macaroni". That will definitely be true if you only feed them macaroni. I feel that what is placed in front of them should be what they are going to eat. My first child was five before he even ate a hot dog and had a very strict diet. My others were raised much more leniently. Consequently, at 2 years old, my son would eat lettuce straight out of the fridge and at a buffet restaurant when all the other kids would load up their plates with red jello and french fries (which is what my now 5 year old would do), he would fill an entire plate with raw spinach, no dressing and eat until his teeth were green. What a proud mom I was. My point is, little taste buds are developing just like their little minds and will be shaped by what they eat and are exposed to. Some things we will never really like. I give my children one thing to really hate and don't force it on them. Other than that, grab your fork and dig in cause mom is the boss of the kitchen! I try to explain why I am feeding them what I place before them, I want them to have a good understanding of why we should eat what is good for us. It is really rubbing off. Saturday I was at the school carnival and was in line with my 8 year old for food. As we approached I reminded him that he wasn't going to get cotton candy. He looked at me and said "Why would I want that? It would just make me sick." The brain washing is working!

Tonight I wanted to try a new recipe, (picture above is not the actual product!) I was pretty sure no one but me would enjoy it but so what. It was a sweet potato quesadilla in my quest to get more sweet potatoes into my diet. I dished it up, waited to see the subtle look on their faces of displeasure and to my surprise, they enjoyed it. We are growing up! Try it out! These would go great with the Caribbean tacos or with some black beans on top. I loved them but I think you need something with them or they get boring.

Sweet Potato Quesadilla

1 1/2 cups finely chopped onion

2 minced cloves of garlic

3 T. oil

4 cups grated and peeled sweet potatoes, I used the yellow variety

1/2 ts. dried oregano

1 tsp. chili powder

2 tsp. ground cumin

generous pinch of cayenne

salt and pepper to taste

1 cup grated mexican cheese

8 tortillas

Saute the onions and garlic in oil until limp. Add grated sweet potatoes and herbs and spices. Don't add the salt yet or pepper. Cover and cook for about 10 mn until potatoes are firm but tender. Stir frequently.Salt and pepper to taste. Spread filling and cheese on tortilla and cook in quesadilla style. Serve garnished with beans, lettuce, salsa,sour cream, etc, whatever you like!

1 comment:

Tracey said...

I just found at Costco yesterday precut, peeled and washed sweet potatoe. They are great to snack on right out of the bag or dip in hummus. Last week I sliced sweet potatoes, brushed them with oil and sprinkled cinamon on them. It was really good, I'm going to try grilling the ones I bought from costco that are in sticks. I completely agree with putting different foods in front of your child. They do learn to like healthy foods if thats what you put in front of them and eat yourself.