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Quick and easy teas for hungry kids?

Forums  /  Public discussions - anyone can read  / Family meals  / Quick and easy teas for hungry kids?
Quick and easy teas for hungry kids?

Posted Tue 14 Sep 2010 14:02

Share your failsafe recipes here and inspire others.

Posted Mon 28 Feb 2011 21:16

My daughter is 3 and a half and I am quite lucky as she eats fairly well. Today we had chicken fajitas. I just cover the chicken in breadcrumbs and fry in a little oil. Then when cooked cut into bite size pieces. We set the table together and have seperate bowls of cheese, salad, sliced peppers (I also have mayo and salsa) then Lily can help herself and make her own wraps and fill it with what she likes. Sometimes we also have rice on the side. It is very quick and easy and doesn't come out of a packet in the freezer!

Posted Sun 06 Mar 2011 16:37

Not quick in the initial sense but a chicken always works out to be a versatile and economical meal for us, besides chicken being the one thing I know they will all eat without any fuss

I hob cook my chicken first in a big pan that is also oven safe, just pop it in water and simmer for and hour and half or so, which is why it's not a quick meal on day one, but since it will then feed us (myself and 3 children) for 3 days subsequent meals are quick. Boiling it ensures it stays really moist and gives me a stock like cooking liquor I can then use for soup. Once it's cooked through I drain off the liquid into a saucepan and pop the chicken into a hot oven to crisp and brown (throw in some roast/baked potatoes at the same time to save time and effort). The liquid can then be used to make up some soup after we've cut of all the breast meat for dinner the next 2 days, just pull off all the remaining meat and add it and vegetables to the cooking liquor and cook for 20 mins or so. If you want gravy a few sponfuls of the cooking liquor and the juices that run off in the oven make a delicious one. Do it on a Sunday and I have a no cook meal Monday and Tuesday

We also do wraps a lot, not always fajitas although those are my favourites . You can put anything in a wrap - quick fried mince or cold meats and chopped raw veg always go down well in our house. I can add spicy sauces/relishes to my own so mine gets livened up even though not all of the children will eat spicy (yet, I am working on the most reluctant, one will eat hot curry and chilli without blinking lol) . It also gets them eating lots of raw veg.

Another one to get them eating raw veg is dips - just plates of chopped raw fruit and veg and a dip - they will eat tons of it and veg they will nto entertain when cooked. If I want them to have meat I add some chicken strips, sometimes cheat and use ready made dippers but other times I just slice up fresh chicken breasts and pop them in the oven (or use the cold chicken from a roast as above).

I do do a lot of advance prep but then I have a chest freezer so I can store ready prepared food for quick cooking later. I even peel and freeze potatoes (can't abide peeling potatoes so do a whole afternoons worth every so often ) and cook and stuff jacket potatoes for freezing that can then be microwaved when needed (never as crispy but freezer to table in 15 minutes ). Breaded chicken dippers are also good for making in big batches then freezing. Leftovers from casserole etc also get frozen in individual portions for later.

Believe it or not we do eat meat other than chicken

Posted Mon 14 Mar 2011 19:10

Hi Losana,
There are people who would howl with laughter at the idea of boiling a chicken nowadays - Ooh NOBODY does that anymore... etc! And more's the pity! I love your ideas and share so many of them regarding stock, soup bases etc. Also I often lightly boil chicken for use in Chinese recipes; it retains so much more moisture that way and finished at high stir-fry temperatures it poses no threat whatsoever.

Totally agree about wraps - what a wonderful invention for all. My son's almost 18 now and has never had any real problems with fruit and veg (apart from the odd "I don't like that anymore"/"I love that stuff now" phases, so we've been lucky or prudent in introducing stuff from the earliest age. [Discuss?]

But it's good to keep finding interesting or different ways in which to serve healthier options. He is a sporty type so wants to stay in shape, but he can be a lazy eater even at his age! However, he's a grown man now, so that's his lookout...

Posted Mon 14 Mar 2011 20:05

Ohh I'd never thought of boiling chicken before stir frying but it sounds a great idea, stir frying can so easily dry out the chicken so I'll be trying that next time!

The art of stock is sadly being lost But then so was the art of baking a few years back and now it's making a resurgence, maybe we should start an 'art of the stock maker' site and bring back stock One £2.99 Aldi chicken has so far done 3 days and the second stock made from the carcass, along with a bag of dark meat, is now in the freezer for a future soup/stew night.

I also forgot toasted sandwiches. Not something most would think of a conventional meal but they don't just have to be a slice of cheese in between 2 slices of bread. I love using cold roast meat and adding onions and tomatoes, or apple to pork, and a sprinkle of oregano with tomatoes or tomatoe puree makes a very pizza like filling, even more so if you add a little cheese be it mozzarella or whatever as well. If using a panini grill type you can warm the meat on the griddle first to make sure it gets hot through before toasting it (toasting long enough to get the meat hot can result in over done bread especially if using thicker breads), even soften onions on the griddle first. Don't just stick to sliced bread either, use panini's, ciabattas, baguettes, even bread rolls and serve with a good salad and you have a balanced meal with very little effort. And there is no need to add fat when making panini grill sandwiches unless you want to.

And pasta. Tons of pasta get used in our house. I confess I use pasta as a means of getting vegetables my kids would otherwise turn their noses up at (which vegetables those are depends on the mood they are in that day ) because I can make a huge batch of 'tomato' sauce that is only 50% tomato and 50% other veg and my kids never notice (thanks to the blender ). It's also a good way of getting any odd left over veg in the bottom of the fridge used up and turned into something worth freezing - even cooked veg.

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