Thursday, April 28, 2011

Janine's rice pudding


Here is another easy recipe sent in from Janine. I've made rice pudding before but it usually contained condensed milk, so it wasn't the healthiest dessert going around. This recipe is beautiful and isn't sickly sweet. I loved it. I added some lemon curd to my portion. Yes, it might seem a little odd but on the weekend, I made some lemon curd and as it has to be eaten within a couple of weeks I have been adding it to everything! After adding a spoonful to this rice pudding I was in heaven for a couple of minutes! Now, this blog isn't about me, it's about our toddlers. Freya loved this. She was a little standoffish at first but after trying a few sultanas she was hooked. Thank you Janine. 

MAKES
2 adult portions or 5 little portions

INGREDIENTS
1/2 cup arborio rice
1 vanilla pod
hand full chopped sultanas
cover well with milk
sprinkle of nutmeg or cinnamon optional

METHOD
1. Preheat oven to 170 degrees
2. Combine all ingredients in a bowl.
3. Divide ingredients into individual ramekins. 
4. Cook for approx 40mins. You might need to add a touch more milk or water to stop it from drying out.

Tuesday, April 26, 2011

Low fat and high fibre pear and oat muffins



These lovely healthy muffins have been sent in by Charlie. These are a massive hit with Charlie’s daughter Millie. As you would know by now, Freya and I love anything sweet, so being able to cook something that is sweet but healthy is a real bonus. These were great and I didn’t have the normal guilt that I feel when feeding Freya a cafe-bought muffin. 

MAKES
12 

INGREDIENTS
1 1/2 cups wholemeal flour
2 tsp baking powder
1 cup oats
1/2 cup oat bran
2 eggs, beaten
1 cup plain low-fat yoghurt
1 heaped tbs honey
1/4 cup olive oil
1 tsp rosewater (optional)
2 ripe pears, grated

METHOD
1. Preheat oven to 180C. Line each 12 cups of a muffin tin with a square sheet of baking paper ( or use muffin cases).
2. Sift flour and baking soda into a large mixing bowl.Add oats and oat bran and gently combine by folding over with a large metal spoon.
3. Beat eggs in a medium-sized mixing bowl. Add yoghurt, honey, oil and rosewater and whisk together with a fork. Gently fold through grated pears.
4. Make a well in the centre of the dry ingredients and add egg mixture. Fold through, from the inside out, until just combined. Do not over mix. Spoon into cases.
5. Bake for 20-25mins, until golden and spongy to touch. Insert a skewer and if it comes out clean, the muffins are ready.

Thursday, April 21, 2011

Bircher muesli



This is a great recipe as not only can it feed everyone in the family but you can also keep the dry ingredients in the cupboard for whenever you need it. My hubby made up this massive batch for us. So now i just need to add the wet ingredients at night and let it work its magic until the morning. We all enjoyed this. I did have to add extra milk to Freya’s the next day as it was a little too thick for her liking. 



INGREDIENTS
1 cup rolled oats
1 tbs each of wheatgerm and oat bran
2 tbs chopped nuts ( any combination of almonds, hazelnuts, sunflower, pepitas, sesame seeds)
1/3 cup fresh or frozen berries
1/3 cup low-fat yoghurt
1/2 cup apple juice
low-fat, skim or soy milk

METHOD
1. Place dry ingredients in a bowl. 
2. Add berries, yoghurt and apple juice, mix well.
3. Pour over enough milk to cover muesli.
4. Seal with cling film and refrigerate for at least one hour but best if left overnight to allow flavours to blend and make the grains easier to digest. Eat as is or add milk or yoghurt if desired. 

TIP
You can prepare bulk quantities of the dry ingredients and store in an airtight container in the pantry. To make, scoop one heaped cup of dry ingredients per person into a bowl and continue as above.

Wednesday, April 20, 2011

Easter biscuits



Wahoo, It's almost Easter time. I'm addicted to chocolate, so a holiday that involves this Is one that I really look forward to. I found this recipe on Taste.com as I was looking for something quick to make for a little Easter party that Freya was invited to. I thought these were perfect as they don't involve too much chocolate and they were so easy. Both Freya and I are massive fans of these. Enjoy. 

MAKES
25

INGREDIENTS
200g white chocolate melts
25 milk arrowroot biscuits
Coloured sprinkles, to decorate

METHOD
1. Place the chocolate in a heatproof bowl over a saucepan half-filled with simmering water (make sure the bowl doesn’t touch the water). Use a metal spoon to stir for 5 minutes or until the chocolate melts and is smooth.
2. Use a small palette knife or butter knife to spread chocolate over 1 biscuit. 
3. Transfer to a wire rack. Carefully sprinkle 1 colour of sprinkles across the centre of the biscuit to form a wide stripe. Carefully sprinkle 2 other colours over either end of the biscuit to form 2 more stripes. Repeat with the remaining chocolate, biscuits and coloured sprinkles (if the remaining chocolate starts to set, repeat step 1). Set aside for 20 minutes or until the chocolate is completely set.

Saturday, April 16, 2011

'Orange delight' lentil dish



This healthy recipe has been sent in by Janine and the great thing about this is that I have never met Janine, so this means that toddlertastes is being spread around amongst friends, I love it (and thank you). 

Now, I’ve had a tough week! I’ve been suffering from an inner ear infection, we are toilet training Freya, and little Summer has been very unhappy during her 3 month growth spurt. So, Janine I must say sorry for the fact that I totally forgot to add the peas when I cooked this, and as I was housebound thanks to the toilet training, I couldn’t go out to buy rice cereal so I used quinoa instead.

I loved this recipe but I have to admit that Freya didn't. She picked out the pumpkin and carrot but left the lentils. This is a real shame as I was really hoping that she would be a fan of the old lentil, as you can add them to anything. I will keep trying though. Thanks again for the recipe.

MAKES
2-3 dinners

INGREDIENTS 
1 carrot
1/2 medium sweet potato
same amount of pumpkin as sweet potato
bit of finely chopped red onion
handful red lentils
handfull green lentils
1 tomato (optional)
peas or brocolli
grated cheese (optional)
iron fortified rice cereal (optional)

METHOD
1. Chop all of the veg into small pieces. 
2. Place the veg and lentils in a pan, cover with water. Bring to the boil and remove the froth from the top of the pan. Turn down heat and cook for approx 45 mins until lentils are soft. 
3. Add frozen peas at the end. Grated cheese is optional. 

Janine adds the rice cereal to thicken, for the iron content and also because the protein is in veggie form it needs to be eaten with a carb and vit C to increase the uptake by the body.

Thursday, April 14, 2011

Healthy Breakfast loaf







Here is a nice healthy breakfast loaf, this recipe was sent in by another school friend, Akkim. Akkim‘s son Luca goes crazy over this loaf. This recipe comes from the book ‘feeding the bump’ by Lisa Neal. I also have this book and still cook a lot of the recipes from it throughout the week. They are all delicious and super-healthy. 

This breakfast loaf is a great recipe because once again it’s quick and there is not a huge amount of washing up to do afterwards. This loaf is beautiful, a nice healthy replacement to banana bread etc. I had friends over yesterday and both kids and Mums enjoyed this. 

The thing that I’m loving about most of the recipes that have been sent in is at that they are suitable for both Mum and Bub. Sometimes it’s hard to find the time to cook something for ourselves. We will go to a massive amount of effort for the little ones but will then struggle to find the time to make something simple like toast for ourselves!


INGREDIENTS
3 ripe bananas
1 pear
1 cup plain, low fat yoghurt
2 eggs
½ cup brazil nuts, chopped
1 & ½ cups wholemeal self raising flour
1/2cup skim milk powder
1 tsp baking powder
1 tsp nutmeg
3 tsp cinnamon
1 cup oats, or rolled barley
½ cup raisins
½ cup oat bran

METHOD
1. Preheat oven to fan forced setting 180 degrees. Line a 20cm loaf baking tin with paper.

2. Mash bananas into a medium sized mixing bowl. Grate the pear into the same bowl. Add the yoghurt, nuts and lightly beaten eggs. Gently fold the ingredients together.

3. Sift flour, skim milk powder and spices into a large mixing bowl. Add oats, raisins and oat bran. Make a well into the centre of the dry ingredients and use a large metal spoon to gently fold through the wet ingredients.

4. Pour mix into a prepared baking tin. (I sprinkle course Demerara sugar over the top to give it a bit of a sweet crunchy texture on top).

5. Bake for 45-50 mins, or until bread is cooked through. Allow the bread to cool for 10 mins before turning out onto a wire rack to cool completely.

6. Slice and serve fresh or toasted.

Monday, April 11, 2011

Easy breakfast cookies



Thanks to our dear friend Linda here is a great ‘soft’ alternative to flapjacks. Linda mentions that she sometimes adds pumpkin seeds, sultanas, apricots etc just to mix things up a little. As the title says, these are so easy to make. Both Freya and I were hooked on these before we even placed the mixture into the oven. We do love a bit of raw mixture! So it was no surprise that the finished product was also delicious. 

MAKES
Around 36 

INGREDIENTS
3 Large ripe bananas
2 1/2 cups quick oats
1/3 cup of honey OR 1/2 cup sugar (we used honey)
1/3 cup oil OR apple sauce (we used apple sauce)
1 tsp vanilla
1/2 tsp cinnamon

METHOD
1. Turn oven on to 180 degrees. 
2. Mix all ingredients together and allow to sit for 15 mins.
3. Spray baking sheet with Crisco and drop by tsp onto tray and flatten
4. Cook for 20 mins or until brown.

I caught Freya climbing up up the drawers to sneak a few away whilst they were cooling down! 


Thursday, April 7, 2011

Bacon and vegetable slice


This wonderful recipe was sent in to us from Belinda, an old school friend. I loved the sound of this and was really hoping that Freya would like it as it's healthy and it has both bacon and egg ( two things that she refuses to eat). Well she LOVED it! As she said a few times, yummy, yummy, yummy. I was soooo happy about this. This is a great dish as it's something that both kids and adults would love. What it also great is that it is a one bowl dish, so there is no major clean up afterwards. Belinda, thank you. This is going to be made on a regular basis for both Freya and me.   

MAKES
8 large slices

INGREDIENTS
250g grated zucchini
125g carrot grated
125g pumpkin grated
1 large onion diced finely
3 rashers bacon chopped
5 eggs
1 cup milk
1 cup s.r flour
1/4 cup vegetable oil
1 cup grated cheese

METHOD
1. Turn oven on to 180 degrees.
2. Mix all ingredients together and bake in a roasting tin (or Belinda recommends silicon moulds) for 35 mins or until golden on top.

Veggie couscous on the side.


Well you’re not going to believe it but i cooked a meal and instead of Freya saying ‘yuck’ (her fave word at  the moment), she was asking for more, more, more Mummy. I made this dish up on the fly. I’m a little over cooking pasta etc only to have Freya pick out all the interesting and healthy bits. So i thought if i pureed the veg, she would have no option other than to eat it. I think she liked this form of couscous as it looks like little balls. I used this as a side dish with some sausages. 

MAKES
Around 4 side dishes.

INGREDIENTS
1/2 cup Israeli couscous (large balls of couscous)
1/2 chicken stock cube
1 cup of diced pumpkin
2 carrots
1/4 avacado
sprinkle of grated cheese

METHOD
1. Boil 1 1/2 cups of water and then add the chicken stock. Place the couscous in the pot and boil for 15 mins (or until the couscous is soft).
2. Peel and slice carrots and pumpkin. Boil until just soft. Puree until all lumps are gone.
3. Combine Couscous and puree. Then add cheese and diced avocado.

Monday, April 4, 2011

Spinach and cheese muffins



Thanks Jo for this recipe.  I cooked it today, and really enjoyed cooking it.  Muffins, but savoury, what a great idea!  I thought Freya would love them as they looked very appetising indeed.  However, she wouldn't even try a bite......I think it was possibly the smell of the basil, too gourmet for little ones!  Anyway, took about 35 mins end-to-end, so not the end of the world.  I ended up having a couple for lunch, and very much enjoyed them.  Maybe good for a birthday party as they look like a cake, but they're not!  Will cook without the basil next time and see how that goes.

MAKES
24

INGREDIENTS
1 cup self-raising flour
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
1 tablespoon caster sugar
1/2 cup (25g) baby spinach
1/4 cup fresh basil leaves
1/4 cup finely grated parmesan cheese
1/2 cup buttermilk
1/4 cup extra-light olive oil
1 egg

METHOD
1. Preheat oven to 200°C/180°C fan-forced. Grease a 24-hole, 1 1/2 tablespoon-capacity mini muffin pan.
2. Sift flour and baking powder into a bowl. Add caster sugar. Stir to combine.
Using scissors, cut spinach and basil into pieces. Add spinach, basil and parmesan to flour mixture. Stir to combine. Make a well in centre.
3. Whisk buttermilk, oil and egg together in a jug. Pour into well. Gently stir until just combined. Spoon mixture into prepared muffin holes. Bake for 12 minutes or until a skewer inserted in the centre of 1 comes out clean. Stand in pan for 5 minutes. Turn out onto a wire rack to cool. Wrap in plastic wrap. Place in lunchbox.