Breakfast... usually done while scrambling for school uniforms, finishing last minute home-work and running around after a missing shoe. However I firmly believe that making time to get some goodness into this first meal of the day for the little ones is so important. From personal experience I've found that starting the little one's day with a protein-loaded breakfast works wonders. 1) She is full for much longer 2) She is less grumpy (seriously!) 3) I feel less guilt as I've kept sugar down or out for at least half a day! So on this "World Cereal Day" here's a few recipe ideas that are worth a try!
Sweetpea Pantry: Blog, Recipes & Reviews
I don't know about you, but I'm slightly envious of those impressive insta posts of food for kids in groovy shapes and formats. I'm not there just yet, but in our house, we are big on pancake shapes and with Pancake Day just around the corner, let's all get inspired to up the ante on our pancakes (and you know they are onto something... shaped pancakes get gobbled up twice as fast, by both kids and adults alike!)
Are you ready for Pancake Day?
We’re counting down the days until Shrove Tuesday; one of our favourite food celebrations. We eat pancakes most weeks anyway, but we love to treat the family to some extra special toppings on Pancake Day.
Naturally we also try to make sure they have some nutritional benefits too, and next week we’ll be making these two delicious and wholesome fillings. Both recipes make a family sized bowl of filling, and we’ve included some ideas for leftovers if you have any.
Our pancake mix is free from gluten and added sugar and salt, so throw on some healthier toppings too and give the whole family a nutritious, refined sugar free treat for Pancake Day. You can make the pancake toppings together in advance, leaving you to focus on those flipping skills on the day. We've begun research a little early so we can try them all, when they are this good... why not!
Five scrumptious pancake toppings – all refined sugar free
Savoury fillings to savour on Pancake Day
Pancakes are super versatile and make for relaxed, happy dining from breakfast through to supper. Kids love cooking them, and you can cram some serious goodness inside. So, get your gluten free Grainy Brainy Pancakes and let’s hit the mixing bowls!
Now, we love the classic ham and oozing melted cheese combo as much as the next pancake fiend, but when you consume as many as we do it’s time to get creative. Here are a few of our fave ways to eat them.
We've all been there. “I don't like that” (hasn't tried it), “I don't eat x” (varies day by day), or just out-right refusal to eat certain foods. I used to let this stress me out, I now realise it is part of the development of independence, asserting own personality or just taking some control. Or perhaps they just don't like something, which hey this is ok too!
I hate wasting food, but realise that you do need to present certain foods over and over before they are even tried – but it is worth the persistence, you do win some (not all, let's be realistic!) in the end.
However, the best way I have found to get fussy or 'refusal' eaters to try something is to involve them in the preparation or cooking of a meal. It is amazing.
Looking for inspiration for a memorable, fun and unique child's party or playdate?
1. Get your hands on some Sweetpea Pantry Playful Pizza Dough with chia and flax. With all dry ingredients included, you only need to add water and oil to make 3 large or 6-8 individual delicious, crisy and fool-proof bases (they will never know you've snuck goodness in there!)
2. Prepare your toppings in advance - have bowls of grated mozzarella cheese, sliced ham, mushrooms, peppers, roasted sweet potato - whatever you fancy. We love Sneaky Veg's three tomato pizza sauce too.
3. Get the little ones aproned up and hands washed
4. After adding your oil/water to your dry mix, everyone can help stir it together and then get hands in to get kneading onto a floured board! (you'll need everyone to take a turn as you need a good 5 minutes of good kneading to make the dough rise, so probably a bit of adult kneading too...).
5. While the dough rises for approx an hour in a warm place, play your party games and distract with fun activies.
6. Once risen, divide into small pieces for each mini baker and use rolling pins and hands to push into thin round (-ish!) bases.
7. Everyone decorate their own pizza with tomato passata or paste, their favourite vegetables and toppings. Finish off with grated mozzarella cheese.
8. Adults to place creations onto floured trays and into very hot 220+ pre-heated oven for 8-10 minutes till bubbling and brown.
9. Devour with a side salad (ok that might be pushing it...) but think of all that goodness in the base!
* Sweetpea Pantry Playful Pizza Dough with chia and flax available at Ocado £4.99 or our new small size at Tesco!
Even with the help of a Sweetpea chia and flax pizza dough mix, pizza dough still has its challenges unless you know a few simple tricks. With these tips, a crispy, delicious, flavoursome pizza is easy (and no recipe needed)!
1. Yeast is a delicate, living ingredient. You need to activate it with water that is not too hot (which kills its activity) or too cold (needs warmth to begin activating. So make sure your water is lukewarm - warm to the touch (even cooler than a baby's bottle!) but far from hot.
Children and kitchens can be a chaotic combination, but whilst cooking with kids can make you want to tear your flour-caked hair out, it can also be extremely good fun. A freshly baked biscuit held by proud little hands is a rewarding sight, and teaching children how to cook nurtures both skills and happy memories that will last a lifetime. Baking healthy treats together is better still; fill their little bellies with nutritious whole grains and they’ll have plenty of energy for the washing up. Yes, cling on to that hope.
Sweetpea Pantry’s five tips for kitchen calm
Making homemade pizza is simple and satisfying, and enjoyable for all ages. For less confident cooks it's also pretty hard to go wrong, especially when using our Playful Pizza Dough. We've got some tips here on helping the dough to work its magic.
Indulge your creative side by having fun with pizza toppings, and experimenting with new combos. It's a great way to use up seasonal veggies and test out new flavours, and you can always pick things off if it doesn't quite go according to plan.
So, we’ve taken the maths, and some of the mess, out of the equation by giving you the super-nutritious Sweetpea Pantry Playful Pizza Dough Mix starring chia and flax.
Now, here are our 5 golden rules for shaping that pizza dough into the best homemade pizzas ever.
What is it about pizza? Kids go crazy for it. In our family it is the dinner we fall back on when there isn't a lot in the fridge (home-made of course!), or that I choose when I want to get the kids involved in making their own dinner - great for play-dates too.
So how to make it that bit more nutritious? My top 3 tips are below...