HOLIDAY SNACK TIME – LA MERENDA DELLE FESTE !
Recipe n. 30
…so your kids are not big fruit eaters ? Well, they are not alone. Many kids would rather choose a pre-packaged snack loaded with sugar and many other bad ingredients. A while ago I did an experiment with my younger child, who was often pushing his bowl full of fresh fruit back at me. Sometimes adding a little something to the exact same fruit you offered before will trick them and make the snack more appealing .
APPLE with CINNAMON
1 Apple peeled and sliced
1 tsp of fresh squeezed lemon Juice
2 tsps of cinnamon powder
Coat the apple slices with the lemon juice first, then sprinkle with cinnamon and mix well.
ORANGE with SHREDDED COCONUT
1 Orange peeled and cut in 3/4 to 1 inch pieces
3 to 4 Tbsps shredded coconut
Sprinkle the orange pieces with the shredded coconut and serve.
PONGO NATURALE per GIOCARE per BAMBINI e ADULTI – NATURAL HOMEMADE PLAYDOUGH for KIDS and GROWNUPS TOO!
Recipe n. 19
I have been trying to be an ‘eco-friendly’ parent since Sasha was born. It’s not an easy goal to reach. It takes quite some time and you need to commit yourself to it. It happens gradually. I have found that there is no need to rush. We changed lots of ‘bad habits’ in our everyday life and in our diet and I think now we are just happier and healthier… A dear friend of mine a while ago asked me to publish this recipe for making a natural, safe, non-toxic and ‘almost edible’ playdough for kids. I found this recipe a while ago, tested it myself and changed only the way the color is achieved. We, (me and my friend Amy) have used this recipe many times in the past few years for our kids playtime and besides being absolutely safe and non toxic, it’s also a great idea to use it if you want make kids party favors.
- 2 cups flour
- 2 cups warm water
- 1 cup salt
- 2 Tablespoons vegetable oil
- 1 Tablespoon cream of tartar (optional for improved elasticity)
- Natural food coloring (liquid, powder, or unflavored drink mix)
Here are some tips about coloring:
To obtain green you can use chlorophyll drops (you can find them in any health food store).
For red you can use the juice of a beet.
For yellow you can use turmeric powder mixed with a tiny amount of water to make a paste.
Mix all the ingredients in a medium sized pot, adding food coloring last and stir over low heat. The dough will begin to thicken. When the dough pulls away from the sides, remove the pot from the heat and allow the dough to cool enough to handle. (If your play dough is still sticky, you simply need to cook it longer. Keep stirring and cooking until the dough is dry and feels like playdough). Turn the dough out onto a clean counter and knead vigorously until it becomes silky-smooth. Divide the dough into balls for coloring. Make a divot in the center of the ball, and drop some food coloring in. Fold the dough over, working the food color through the body of the play dough, trying to keep the raw dye away from your hands and the counter. You could use gloves or plastic wrap to keep your hands clean (only the concentrated dye will color your skin, so as soon as it’s worked in bare hands are fine). Work the dye through, adding more as necessary to achieve your chosen color.
Store it in an airtight container and if it begins to dry out, you can knead a bit of water in to soften the dough back to usability. You can even freeze the extra playdough up to a year!
Play with your playdough. It’s entirely edible, maybe a bit salty and most important it’s kid-safe! This playdough will last for a long time…
CARAMELLE DI NOCI E FRUTTA SECCA – DRIED FRUIT AND NUT ROLLED CANDIES
Soon our son will be turning 3 and I’m already planning with excitement his birthday party, which requires me to do lots of thinking about alternative solutions for a healthy kids menu and eco friendly party. This is the kind of person I am and not surprisingly I hang out with other ‘health freak moms’. We always worry about our kids eating too much sugar and other refined products. Of course when it comes to a party it’s almost impossible to avoid the sugar but at least we can control it by making our own cakes, sweets and treats.I found these caramelle a great idea to add to ‘Sasha’s birthday menu’. They really are just nut snack bars but rolled into a small ball shape. The way they are presented makes them more interesting and delicious in the kids eyes.
- 1 cup of mixed nuts (hazelnuts, walnuts, almond, sunflower seed and sesame seeds)
- 1 cup of dried fruit (cranberries, currants or raisins, apricots, dates)
- 1 tbsp vegetable oil to help it to stick together
In a food processor mix the nuts, the dried fruit and the vegetable oil until you obtain a sort of crunchy sticky dough. Roll candies into small ball shapes or any other shape you would like to experiment with, although balls are the easiest shape as the dough could easily fall apart as the oil and the stickiness from the fruit are the only things that hold them together. Place each ball in a small baking paper cup. Chill for a couple of hours to help them to stick together. You can serve cold or at room temperature.
IMPORTANT NOTE: This recipe is not suitable for people with nut allergies. Be sure to warn your guests.
IL SUCCO ARANCIONE DI SASHA – SASHA’S FAVORITE JUICE
I recently ‘converted’ my family to add at least one raw meal once a day to our diet. Usually this would happen half an hour before lunch with a mixture of vegetables and fruit extracted from my new juicer. I like to try many different combinations of fruit and vegetables mixed together, so we never know what color the juice will come out until the very last minute. Everyday our son Sasha asks me the same question: “Che colore e’ il succo oggi mommy? Rosso, blu, verde?” Green is not usually his favorite but he will still drink it and it makes me so happy that I have finally found a way to have him ‘eat’ all the good vegetables such as broccoli, cabbage, Kale, spinach and even wheatgrass! Yes, you can make a juice pretty much out of any kind of vegetable you like. Of course they need a big help from the natural sugar, which is in all fruit to taste good and believe it or not they really do taste good! Not to mention that if you are a bit creative you can also make great ice pops with some of the same juice you made using any kind of mold you have handy at home. The only difference is that instead of drinking it you are going lo lick it and it’s going to feel so cool especially in the coming hot summer days!
Everybody will love it!
- 3 CARROTS
- 2 APPLES (I like to use red delicious apples as they are very sweet)
- 1 SMALL PIECE OF GINGER
- 1 STALK OF CELERY (optional)
Serves 2-3 people
Now, in order to make a good juice you need to have a real juice extractor. A blender or a regular juicer won’t do the job. Wash the apples and carrots. You don’t need to peel them. Ideally organically growth vegetables and fruit are always the best choice. You don’t want to drink any pesticides along with your juice. Just cut them in half to avoid stressing the juicer machine and peel the small piece of ginger. Turn the machine on and add one piece or two at a time. Drink it right away! Absorption of and benefit from the juice is highest then.
Tip: Keep your fruit and vegetables in the fridge if you like to have a cold juice. You can add ice or cold pure water afterword if you prefer a more liquid version or just to adjust the thickness of your juice.
Advice: Don’t try to store the juice in the fridge for any length of time as all these kinds of juices are meant to be consumed instantly to avoid oxidation and loss of important vitamins.