Friday, 27 April 2012

Getting kids to eat veg ! The ultimate challenge !

My girls are now 4 and almost 2 and I am continually worried they don't eat enough of the good stuff and eat too much rubbish!  This really came to the fore when Toots, now 4, declared that "I don't do vegetables anymore. And I really, really don't like peas". This came as a bit of a blow since she had been (bean?) a pea addict from a very early age........or

So I decided after several weeks of pulling peas out of various meals that I would try my hand at deception - after all, is that not what parenting is all about.? And so to hiding veg!

I remember reading a recipe which was a versatile tomato sauce which hid vegetables in it as it was pureed. So I thought I would try with some of the veg I had in the cupboard.

I was delighted at the result - both girls wolfed it down and so I'm delighted to share it with you. We made it into sausage pasta bake but it would work with just pasta, on a pizza or with chicken. Let your imagination run wild.

Recipe: Hidden vegetable tomato sauce

1 onion, diced
2 tsp rapeseed oil (we used Summer Harvest)
garlic (to your own taste - we use ready 1 tsp ready lazy pre-prepared)
2 carrots, diced
2 courgettes, diced
(any other veg you have in - we used a couple of potatoes and a bit of brocolli)
500mls passata (we used one with basil
1 (ish) litres of veg stock
1 tsp tomato puree
1 tsp honey
1 tsp lea and perrins
1 tsp balsamic or white wine vinegar

We prepared this in the slow cooker but it would also work on the hob

1. Put your slow cooker on low and put passata and tom puree in - mix well.
2. In a thick bottomed pan, heat the oil.
3. Add the garlic and onion and fry (without browning) until soft and translucent
4.Add to your slow cooker.
5. Fry your veg of choice to bring some heat to it.
6. Then add to slow cooker with the stock, honey, lea and perrins and vinegar.
7. Cook for 3 hours or so until the veg are soft
8. Allow to cool for 1 hour or so then puree - we pureed until very, very smooth.
9. Allow to cool completely then freeze in bags or boxes.
10. Defrost as needed.

We served this with good quality sausages and pasta.

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