So you know by now that my kids hate vegetables worse than prickly heat. I tried telling them that if veggies have a bad rap, kids are mostly to blame.
“Show me one kid… any kid you know.. who actually likes his veggies and doesn’t swallow them down like medicine,” I challenged.
They just looked at me with eons of sympathy like I was having a hot flash and exchanged knowing looks.
“Mom, you make us eat OKRA, BEETROOT, TURNIPS, BITTER MELON, COYOTE SQUASH and other unmentionables, for crying out loud. And it surprises you that we can’t stand vegetables?”
In my defense, they never know that they are actually eating those things during the meal. I do the big reveal after the meal – Jeopardy style. It’s more fun that way.
“It’ feels like swamp slime but will make you a whizz at Math.”
“WHAT IS OKRA?”
“It clears acne better than Salicylic acid.”
“WHAT IS BITTER MELON?”
But there comes a time when you have to stop indulging picky children and try a different strategy, even if it falls just short of force feeding.If food looks appealing, even the pickiest of kids should at least want to sample it. The next challenge would be to get him to take a full serving and then maybe seconds. That will happen when the wonderful flavors jump-start his taste buds. If you mix the right veggies to provide a color contrast, or even if you go for the monochromatic look, you can still, off set the boring with flakes of chopped cilantro or basil, roasted wedges of vine ripened tomato or cut fruit. Yes, fruit and veggies do complement each other in flavor and in appearance. A little funky seasoning will go a long way toward making that happen.
For this dish you will need,
2 cooked potatoes
1 coarsely torn parasilla pepper (they have a nice, delayed kick that works great with potato)
1 cup of leftover pineapple (canned or fresh)
1 dried red chilli
1/4 tsp fenugreek seeds
1 sliced onion (red for color contrast)
Pinch of turmeric
Salt to taste
In a deep fry pan, heat about two tbsp oil. Fry onion, fenugreek seeds and dried, crumbled chilli on low flame until the onions are crispy. Add the cooked potatoes and coarsely crumble them with a fork. Add the parasilla pepper. Stir. Add salt to taste and the turmeric. Cook, occasionally tossing the veggies to prevent burning. Just before you take the pan off the stove, toss in the pineapple chunks. Stir to combine the ingredients. Check the salt. Remove from the stove and serve. This dish works great with tortillas, chapatis, Naan, or even toasted pita bread.