I believe that good nutrition in early years is a solid foundation for a healthy life of a tiny human. With healthy and varied diet we instal important habits that will last a life time and give children a proper fuel they need for all they developmental needs. We as care givers (may it be Nanny, grandparents, parents, childminder etc) have to come up with a million new dishes, snacks and tasty treats that are going to win over little ones. Sometimes you succeed and sometimes you fail, but the ones that they like, will mostly likely become you go to recipes for any day.
As a Nanny (and I’m sure every parent too) I want to cook meals that as healthy but easy and take little to no time to prepare. I also want to be mind full about food waste, and want to make up the recipes, when I can use leftover from the day before. So I came to love these few go to recipes and wanted to share them with you. Some of them are one time favourite and few are a recent development that was well accepted by picky eaters.
Pancakes two ways:
- Banana and egg pancake with a side of yoghurt
Two ingredients and such a yummy result. Mash banana and mix in an egg. I also add some vanilla to make it even more appealing. Pour small amount on hot pan and flip after a few min. You do have to be a bit more softer with these as they are quite delicate. Serve them with some yoghurt and blueberries.
- Stacking pancakes with condiments of choice
I rarely measure this recipe as I always do them with kids running around, and once you do it lots of times, it sort of just happen. But for the sake of you knowing how much and what to put in, here is a version of it.
Hand mix 2 eggs, add a cup of milk and vanilla. In a separate bowl mix 1 and a half spelt flour with a table spoon of baking powder than slowly add to the wet mixture and try not to leave to much lumps (but if there is any – oh well that is life). Consistency is quite thick, but it still pours nicely. You know the rest!
Is also a good snack or dessert, but so so yummy for breakfast when it’s cold outside. It’s much faster if you have some left over rice in the fridge and you can speed up the process. So than you put a cup of cooked rice in a source pan and ad a cup of milk, vanilla, cinnamon and a pinch of salt. Leave to boil until the milk is reduced and rice is creamy. Serve in a bowl with some berries and a drizzle of maple syrup (or honey).
If you do it from scratch than you would need to add more milk (double) and it just takes longer as the rice is not cooked.
These are great for summer mornings, easy to prepare as you do most the night before, and basically just serve it next morning.
TO DO: Put half of a cup of rolled oats in a glass jar, add 3 spoons of yogurt and half a cup of milk of choice. Also add cinnamon and raspberries. Put in the fridge over nigh. In the morning take it out of the gas jar and add a little warm milk, just so it’s not super cold – more like room temperature.
This is just one of many variations you can do, but add whatever your kid likes. I would also recommend doing it with them, so they can chose what is inside. This is especially good, when there is a lot of drama and negotiating with breakfast in the morning. That way they do it, and it’s all ready for them, so no
Carrot and potato croquets
Boil one potato, grate one carrot – tap it with a kitchen towel to absorb the excess water, add egg, salt, pepper and majaron. When potato is cooked mashed it with a tea spoon of butter (coconut is best) and add to the carrot mixture. To all that add spelt flour and spoon out portions on hot skillet. Brown it on both sides – It does not take long – and take out on to the kitchen towel to absorb extra oils. Serve with some peas (or any other green veg).
Rice and carrot omelette
This quick meal is great when you have left over rice. It’s so easy to make, but at the same time it provides all the right nutrients that the child needs, and it’s a finger food, which is especially good when the baby does not to be feed anymore. It’s also a good way to get kiddos eat egg, if they don’t like it on it’s own.
Just mix egg with some rice and grated carrot (1 egg, small carrot and 3 spoons of rice). Add spices and herbs of choice. Pour it on the hot pan (medium hot) and bake until it’s solid enough to turn around, and than sometimes I will sprinkle a little of parmesan cheese on top to add another flavour. serve with some veg – we tend to go for peas a lot as that seems to go down well, but I offer green beans and edamame as well with this meal.
Sweet and sour chicken
Sauce: 2 table spoons of apple cider vinegar, 2 table spoons of sugar (coconut), 2 table spoons of ketchup, salt to taste. Bring to boil and add 1 tea spoon you previously mixed with 3 table spoons of cold water. Add and take of the stove (it will thicken quickly).
Chicken: Cut big chicken file in to a bite size pieces and add 1 table spoon of corn starch. Trow everything in a ziplock bag and shake. Add oil to pan and fry the chicken (without the plastic bag) 😉
Veg: Cut Carrot and red peppers to bite size pieces and steam them until tender and add them to the pan with chicken to fry for a min or two.
Transfer everything in a bowl and add the sauce.
Serve with steamed broccoli and rice.
Roasted Vegetables with feta and cuscus
Such a simple thing to do and lovely autumn dish. I love the recipes you put in the oven and a while after it’s dinner! They work especially good, when you cook while looking after the kids. I tend to pre cut the vegetables when children nap and than a little before it’s dinner time, I will pop it then oven, and it will be nice and fresh.
Cut butternut squash, red peppers, courgette, celery and beetroot. Put them all on the baking tray. Drizzle over some olive oil, add salt, pepper and rosemary. Roast until tender and nicely brown and crisp. Take them out of the oven and crumble feta cheese over the tray. Serve with cuscus.
Bolognese sauce with pasta
The ultimate meal that even the most picky eaters will love. I adopted the recipe from the wonderful Annabel Karmel and can now do it with my eyes closed. Only thing I change is I use majaron and not thyme, and I don’t use sugar. I love to make a big batch and just have portions on hand in the freezer. It really can save you on the days that are just to crazy. And on top of that it is a delicious and hearty meal full of hidden veg. Definitely head on her web site for more yummy recipes.
I hope that gives you some inspiration and ideas for your future meals. I am by no means a trained chef, but some would say I am a tiny humans chef, and as we all know, it’s not easy to be one of those! What we all wish is for them to eat a well balanced diet and grow up healthy. I would be a so happy if I had help sparked some ideas to help you in that process.
As always Sharing is caring!
The Lovely Nanny xx