Sneaky eating

14 Jul

We all know we have to get at least 2 servings of fruit and at least 3 servings of vegetables per day. One serving is about 150g or 5 ounces. Now, raise your hands if you meet these requirements.

You do? Great.

You don’t? Well, that is where this post comes into play. While I find it easy to add plenty of fresh produce to my meals – and tend to go crazy in the grocery store during the summer months – Richard is slightly pickier with his food, and sometimes forgets about the “one apple a day” rule. I bet many of you have similar problems. Why not make life easier by sneaking some healthier foods into your everyday treats?

  • Coffee. Don’t lok at me like that, I am completely normal in my head. Okay, no, but this is a really good idea. Prepare a cup of strong black coffee and blend it with a banana, a tablespoon of nut butter (so far I have tried peanut, almond and hazelnut) and maybe a teaspoon of coconut oil. Tastes delicious and might even make a great iced drink (haven’t tried it). This is also a great breakfast in a hurry, because it contains proteinand carbs and healthy fats.
  • Baking. Not just by making apple pie or some other fruit-laden baked good. You can substitute almost all fat in most baking recipes with puréed fruit, such as applesauce. The internet is filled with recipes for cakes, muffins, bread and such. I have even seen a recipe for chocolate cake with beetroot, but I have not tried it yet. All applesauce recipes, however, have been met with enthusiasm by my colleagues. (And my colleagues are mostly from countries that place great emphasis on desserts and baked goods, so their opinion matters. Ever tried Moroccan almond cookies?) I usually keep one or two tablespoons of fat per recipe for taste and texture.
  • Ground beef/sausage. If you have a recipe that calls for ground beef or sausage, simply replace some of it (up to a third in my kitchen) with grated vegetables such as carrots and zucchini or lentils – the funny orange ones, they cook really fast. I have done this with lasagna or sloppy joes and have even healthified burger patties without anyone complaining.
  • Ice cream. A few weeks back we bought an ice cream maker. Not the fancy one with the compressor that can give you virtually throlfteen (i.e. as many as you like) flavors right away, but one of those boring pots to put in the freezer with a stirring mechanism to be put on top. Yesterday I blended a ripe mango with some cream and crème fraîche and a few spoons of sugar and turned it into dessert. I have done the same with strawberries and orange juice or pineapple and coconut milk. I am also known for blending fruid salad with a bit of buttermilk or juice and turning it into popsicles.
  • Pudding. Instead of milk and starch, base your puddings on avocado or banana purée. Plenty of recipes out there. While I am personally not a great fan of the avocado chocolate pudding, many swear by it.
  • Mashed potatoes. Try adding avocado or cooked cauliflower to your potatoes before mashing. Or, after mashing, add finely diced/shredded/naturally small vegetables such as carrots, zucchini or peas.
  • Soups and stews. Every soup benefits from more vegetables. Cream soups are the easiest because you can blend everything you want, and no one really cares what’s in them. For all other soups and stews, simply cut your vegetables as small as you like them (small enough so they cannot be picked out if you have picky children). Grating is a PITA, but helpful.
  • Smoothies and milk shakes. Easy. Use more fresh fruit. Or vegetables. You have all heard about the famous green smoothies, right? The most important thing is to get the texture right. One of my favorite summer smoothies consists of cucumber, apple and parsley.

Well, these are all the tricks I can think of off the top of my head. Most of them work like a charm with Richard, and we have also fed all kinds of vegetables to unsuspecting kids (and picky adults). How do you make sure everyone eats their greens (and reds and yellows and…)?

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3 Responses to “Sneaky eating”

  1. Liathano July 15, 2013 at 10:32 am #

    Vielen Dank für die tollen Ideen! Besonders diese geniale Kaffeevariation muss ich ausprobieren. 🙂 Unsere warme Mahlzeit besteht eigentlich immer aus frischem Gemüse (okay, ist bei 90% veganer Ernährung auch naheliegend), morgens ins Müsli/in den Haferbrei kommen auch meist frische Bananen oder Himbeeren und abends zum Brot gibt es aufgeschnittene Gurken, Tomaten oder Salat. Ein Smoothie zwischendurch geht immer und wenn es mal was Süßes sein soll, wird ein Brotaufstrich aus Bananen und Kakao oder ein Crumble aus Obstresten gemacht. Überhaupt sind auch frische Dips ganz toll, grünes, rotes, weißes oder normales Hummus, gesundes selbstgemachtes Ketchup, Salsa, Chutneys, ganz toll mit frisch gebackenem Brot oder Gemüsebürgern.

    • Liathano July 15, 2013 at 10:38 am #

      Das ist jetzt alles nicht so sneaky, fällt mir auf, ich glaube, bei meinem Freund geht es eher darum, Sachen einfach nur hübsch angerichtet und geschnippelt zur normalen Mahlzeit dazuzupacken, dann isst er sie schon, statt einfach nur die Äpfel auf den Tisch zu legen (die werden ignoriert).

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