Archive for the ‘Children’ Category

Hot Breakfast New Year’s Resolution

Tuesday, January 4th, 2011

Most kids in America do not eat a hot breakfast. Cereal seems to be most common when breakfast is eaten at home. But breakfast is too often eaten on the go, a granola bar in hand as an afterthought while racing out the door. Starting the day off right, as they say, is incredibly important. My latest book, Eat Your Breakfast or Else!, helps young children understand this through the book’s main character, Jared, who encounters a harrowing journey to outer space when he does not fuel up properly. I now have a video live on KitchenDaily that shows you how you can serve fluffy and flavorful flapjacks any day of the week in under a minute! Yes, literally in under 60 seconds. Watch the video and you’ll see…

Serving a hot breakfast is pretty easy if you plan ahead. Make 2011 the year that you feed your family something homemade and healthy for the first meal of the day!

Key Lime Pie Ice Cream Sandwiches

Tuesday, August 3rd, 2010

What could be better than key lime pie? The ice cream sandwich version, of course! In my new AOL series on, Pantry Challenge, I show busy mom and PR professional, Jennifer, how to make this delicious no-bake dessert. Want to lower the calories a little? Use sugar-free jello and low-fat graham crackers.

Quick Kids Lemonade

Tuesday, July 6th, 2010

My son is obsessed with lemonade. Not the bottled or powdered kind, but the real deal. Every day during this hot and humid summer I allow him a glass of chilled happiness in the form on 8 ounces water, 2 teaspoons agave and the juice of half a lemon (plus a handful of ice cubes, of course, to let the sweet and tangy elixir last). I make two glasses at a time using one lemon. Quick, easy, healthy, natural, and utterly refreshing. Give it a try and you’ll never drink the fake stuff again.

Three easy ways to get the kids involved to help make the lemonade:
1. Have the kids roll the lemons back and forth on a cutting board to loosen the juices.
2. Pass the measuring spoon to tiny hands to measure the honey.
3. Let the children stir the lemonade until thoroughly mixed.

Feeding the Family Is an Affair to Remember

Sunday, May 24th, 2009

Pizza is a big deal at my house. Every Friday my son, Jonathan, and I make a homemade pizza for lunch with all his favorite fixings that we affectionately call Pizza Giovanni (recipe below). Sometimes we invite good friends or family to join us, but many days it’s just the two of us and one of the special ladies in his life who babysits. This week we are making this family treat on Sunday instead so that Daddy can join in the fun.

Jonathan loves vegetables, so we pile them high in a bounty of color. We both like a lot of contrasting textures and flavors. We pair crisp, raw white onions with supple, sweet roasted red peppers. Baby mozzarella the size of pearls yield all the benefits of fresh buffalo with the kid-friendly edge of not needing a knife. Italian chicken sausage is just like its pork counterpart, but far more healthful. We favor raw mushrooms to cook with the pizza, thus avoiding the need to sauté them in advance. Homemade sauce is wonderful, but in a pinch I use Muir Glen’s organic fire roasted tomato sauce.

The crust, of course, is key (so, too, is going light on the sauce). And we have a special field trip for that piece of the pie. My son loves that he has a role to play in the preparation by walking around the corner to the pizza parlor each week. It’s something he looks forward to almost as much as the 50 cents change he gets to throw in his piggy bank from paying for the $4.50 dough with a $5 bill. Our local New York pizzeria, Arturo’s, makes excellent dough and happily sells it to us each week.

Feeding my family is something really special. The memories we are making—and the skills my son is learning —are priceless. I love sharing what I do with my son, and I am always pleased to see his enthusiasm for the food he loves begin with its preparation.

There are two books I highly recommend for anyone who wants to cook not only for their children, but with their children. I recently had the privilege of styling TV segments for both authors on their respective appearances on CBS’s The Early Show:

familymealscoverMaria Helm Sinskey’s Williams-Sonoma Family Meals: Creating Traditions in the Kitchen is a stunning and authentic collection of family recipes. Sinskey’s enthusiasm and passion for family and food jumps right off the page. She covers everything from pancakes to crab cakes, all with accompanying mouthwatering photographs and helpful hints. Parents and kids of all ages will be inspired to cook together after a leisurely look through this beautiful book.         hungrymonkeycoverHungry Monkey: A Food-Loving Father’s Quest to Raise an Adventurous Eater by Matthew Amster-Burton is a witty and entertaining book about the ups and downs of feeding his adorable and deliciously precocious daughter, Iris. Peppered throughout the book are delectable recipes that are, to borrow a pop-culture phrase, kid-tested and [father] approved. His potsticker recipe rivals that of any dim sum joint in Chinatown.

Pizza Giovanni

1 large pizza dough
¾ cup tomato sauce
1 pound fresh mozzarella (in baby balls or sliced)
2 Italian chicken sausage links, fully cooked and sliced
2 roasted bell peppers, sliced
6 large button mushrooms, sliced
1 small white onion, sliced
freshly grated Parmesan
Basil leaves for garnish

Preheat the oven to 400˚F and place the oven rack in the middle.

Stretch the pizza dough to fit a half sheet pan (a jelly roll pan of 18 x 13). Place the dough in the pan, making sure that it is fully stretched to every corner. Pinch excess dough within the pan to create a border.

Spread the tomato sauce over the base of the dough, then evenly place the mozzarella on top. Next add the sausage slices, roasted peppers, onions, and mushrooms. Sprinkle with freshly grated Parmesan and bake for 20 minutes, or until the crust is brown and the cheese is bubbling.

Remove from the oven and onto a cutting board. Let the pizza rest for two minutes before slicing. Serve immediately.
Makes 4-6 servings.