A Coriander Kale Pasta For Those Who Hate Kale

Let's be honest. For many kids and adults, kale is, literally and figuratively, a tough one to swallow. 

Meanwhile, study after study shows that green vegetables are nutritional superheroes.

A 2015 study linked consumption of 1-2 servings of green leafy veggies per day to substantially improved cognitive abilities. Another study demonstrated that a chemical compound, 3,3'-diindolylmethane (DIM) in kale, broccoli and other greens enhances immune system function, clears viruses and fights cancer. DIM is, in fact, in clinical trials for cervical and prostate cancer. 

To help us get our kale on, here is a simple, nutritious and may I say delicious pasta to please kale-averse kids and adults alike. With unusual but pleasing hints of health-boosting coriander, avocado and protein-rich chickpeas, this creamy kale preparation really hits the spot.

You can smother the sauce on crackers for a snack, slather it on a grilled cheese sandwich to boost the nutritional content in kiddo's lunchbox or enjoy it with your favourite pasta for a weeknight family supper that's healthy, tasty and quick to prepare. 

My 4 and near 40 year old boys ate it with gusto. I hope your families will love it too. 

RECIPE

Coriander Kale Pasta
Babies, Baby-led weaning, Toddlers, Kids, Adults

Yield
Serves 2 adults and 2 kids 

Ingredients
2 tbsp olive oil
2 shallots, chopped
4 garlic cloves, chopped
1/2 tsp coriander powder
4 cups roughly chopped kale leaves, thick stems removed
Salt and pepper
1/2 cup cooked chickpeas
Juice of 1 lemon
1/2 avocado
Parmesan cheese (optional)
Red chilli flakes (adults only, optional) 

Method
In a pot for which you have a lid, heat the oil on medium. 

Sauté the shallots until soft for 3-5 minutes. Add the garlic and sauté until fragrant, about a minute. 

Add the kale and a sprinkling of salt. Sauté to mix with the shallots, garlic and oil. Add a splash of water and reduce heat to low. Cover and steam for 3-5 minutes until the kale has softened. 

Take the lid off and stir in the chickpeas. Transfer the ingredients into a blender with the avocado and lemon juice. Blend well until a creamy sauce forms. Add a splash of warm water to help things along. Taste and adjust the salt and pepper. 

Stir into your favourite pasta (we love whole grain kamut spaghetti) adding a a bit of the pasta cooking liquid to make the mixture extra smooth. Serve with grated parmesan cheese for everyone and chilli flakes for adults, if you like a bit of heat.

Serve babies the sauce on its own without salt as a delicious and nourishing baby puree or with soft cooked pasta for baby-led weaning. 

 

 

 


 
 

 

 

 

 

Guilt-Free Butternut Squash Fries

My current love affair with nutmeg inspired me to create these ultra nutritious, fall-friendly butternut squash fries. This no-fuss recipe is guaranteed to get the pickiest of eaters chowing down on one of autumn's finest veggies. The adults on the table won't be disappointed either. 

RECIPE

Butternut Squash Fries
Baby-led weaning, Toddler, Kid, Adult

Science Corner
Butternut squash is not only delicious but alive with nutrients - carotenoids (that become vitamin A in the body), antioxidants, anti-inflammatory molecules, starches that aid in blood sugar regulation, B vitamins, including folate and surprisingly, a bit of omega-3 fats in the form of alpha linoleic acid, also a potent anti-inflammatory agent. Squash is abundant in winter and affordable so there really is every reason to make it part of your family table.

Yield
2 adults and 2 kids servings

Ingredients
1 small butternut squash cut into 3 inch by 1/2 inch strips
1 tablespoon coconut or olive oil
1/2 teaspoon salt or to taste (skip for babies)
1/2 teaspoon freshly grated nutmeg

Method
Preheat the oven to 425 F / 220 C. 

Toss the chopped butternut squash with the oil, salt and nutmeg, mixing well. Spread in a single layer on a parchment paper-lined baking tray or dish. 

Bake for 20 minutes, tossing halfway. Finish with a broil for 3-5 minutes until the fries are crispy but not burned. Allow them to cool. Enjoy as a delicious veggie side, healthy fries substitute or finger food for babies.