Today we are going to start a new tradition. Every now and again we will post recipes to cook on a day when you have a bit more time. For us it’s Sunday (Yay for Home-Cooked Sundays!). The recipes will make enough for two family dinners, as I’ll offer an idea for transforming the leftovers into a quick and easy dinner on a busy night. We will call that Easy Tuesday (so you can fit in Meatless Monday).
Our first recipe, Quinoa Crusted Chicken, is adapted from our new cookbook The Family Cooks, and the way to turn the leftovers into an easy Chicken Parmesan is from our last cookbook The Family Dinner … So it’s very much a family thing…
Whole grain couscous cooks up quickly and is a great dish to jazz up with colorful veggies and protein-packed nuts. This recipe comes to us from Veggi Rider, a fun, illustrated app designed to help parents and kids get excited about cooking with veggies!
Food for Thought: Couscous is a popular dish from North Africa, where the Sahara Desert is. Doesn’t cooked couscous look a little bit like a desert’s sand dunes? Pretend you are a camel crossing the giant desert of your dinner plate. Don’t forget to create a beautiful oasis (a small watering hole) out of yogurt sauce.
Cooking Tip of the Week: Turmeric is a bright orange spice that’s packed with antioxidants. It has a slightly bitter flavor, but it is mostly used for its color. If you can’t find it in the spice aisle, you can leave it out or substitute curry powder for an extra punch of flavor.
Sometimes we don’t have to chase happiness, we just have to pause and let it catch up to us. — J. Sacks
Here are some tasty after-school snack ideas:
* Sliced apples, caramel, Parmesan cheese and whole wheat crackers. Dip the apples and the cheese into the caramel. Serve with hot or cold apple juice.
* Graham crackers and peanut butter. Add a crock of honey to spread on top. Oranges cut into wedges. Serve with fresh fruit juice.
* Pretzels with mustard and cream cheese with chives. Celery sticks too. Hot apple cider to serve along side.
* Sliced turkey with sliced cheese. Wrap them within large lettuce leaves. Dijon mustard or lowfat dressing to dip the wraps in. Serve with herbal tea, iced or hot.
* Fresh strawberries to dip into vanilla yoghurt and brown sugar. Serve with chamomile tea.
* Pita chips, celery and carrots. Perhaps a bell pepper and a cucumber too. Some humus and tatziki for dipping. Mint tea.
* Fill ice cream cones with vanilla yoghurt, top with chopped strawberries and slivered almonds.
* Crunchy celery sticks, tops left on. Carrots, peeled and left whole. Thai peanut sauce and Asian crackers. Jasmine tea.
* Hot chocolate bar. Only for special days when nothing seems to have gone right. A pitcher of hot chocolate, some mugs, and a few bowls of whipped cream, sliced oranges, chocolate kisses, and of course marshmallows.
Aaaaaargh! It’s 5:49 pm and you have not a clue what your family is going to have for dinner. Never fear, your pantry dinner recipe is here!
Sometimes you have time to spend a whole day cooking and humming around your kitchen in a fancy apron. And sometimes you just fling open your pantry and hope that dinner has just magically appeared. Well ta da! Here is dinner, Pappa al Pomodoro (Simple Tomato and Bread Soup), and it is almost magic.
It is possible that you already have all these ingredients. It is super easy to make and you end up with a tangy, tasty, nourishing bowl of soup. We call it a “pantry dinner” and we love pantry dinner recipes so much we have a bunch we share with you in our book. Do you have a favorite pantry dinner you can share with us? Please do!
Kids love delicate, heart-healthy grain quinoa, especially when it takes on the familiar flavors of honey and cinnamon. Soaking the quinoa in warm water with yogurt makes it irresistibly fluffy, but if you don’t have time, simply cook the quinoa according to package directions and top each serving with the walnuts, cinnamon and honey. This recipe comes to us from Kristi Arnold, The Veggie Converter.
Visit The Kids Cook Monday for the full recipe for Walnut Cinnamon Quinoa.