Handstand Kids

Tag Archive for vegetables

Language Lesson: Cucumbers

The cucumber or cucumis sativus is a widery cultivated plant in the gourd family Cucurbitaceae. It is a creeping vine which bears cylindrical edible fruit when ripe. We wanted to take the day to give you a quick language lesson. Try saying “cucumber” in these different languages:

Spanish - pepino

German – gurke

French – concombre

When you’ve mastered all of these words, try them out in the following recipes:

Spanish Cucumber Salad from About.com is a perfect dish for a warm day – light, tasty and refreshing!

Gurkensalat from AllRecipes.com is a traditional German favorite.

This French cucumber recipe from Food.com was a favorite of legendary chef Julia Child.

If you like our cucumber lesson today, let us know on our Facebook or Twitter!

Excited about Eggplants

A great rule of thumb for creating a healthy meal is that the more color you add, the healthier it is! That’s why we’re excited to feature eggplants – their vibrant purple color will add a playful punch to your Handstand Kids’ plates.

Before you dive into our awesome Italian recipe, here are five things that you may not know about eggplants:

  • Although we like to think of them as vegetables, eggplants are botanically classified as a berry with numerous small, soft, edible seeds.
  • Eggplants are a part of the nightshade family and are closely related to the tomato and potato families.
  • China is the world’s top eggplant producing country.
  • Other names for the eggplant include aubergine, melongene, brinjal and guinea squash.
  • As you will learn below, in Italian, eggplant is called “melanzane” which means “crazy apple.”

Now that you know a little bit more about eggplants, you’re ready to make The Leaning Tower of Eggplant from our Handstand Kids Italian cookbook!

If you’re making the Leaning Tower of Eggplant, we want to see those towers rise tall – post pics to our Facebook and Twitter!

Kebabs for Kids

The word Kebab generally refers to meat served on a skewer cooked over or next to flames. Not only are these skewers a snap to make but they’re extremely easy for even the youngest chefs to help put together – just make sure to watch out for those sharp points! Even though Handstand Kids love meaty recipes, we love making new twists, so we’ve provided our favorite kebabs made from meat, veggies and fruits!

You can’t go wrong with these traditional Beef Kebabs from SimplyRecipes.com!

These Veggie Kebabs from RecipeShack.com can be eaten as a side or a complete meal!

These Fresh Fruit Kebabs from AllRecipesIn.com will bring vibrant color to your table scape!

If you’re kebab-ing it up, make sure to share what you’ve made on our Facebook and Twitter.

Let Us Celebrate Lettuce!

If you’re looking for something crisp and refreshing to keep those kiddos in shape, try some delicious lettuce. In case you need a refresher on some of the most popular varieties, read below for a quick lesson!

Romaine (center) - grows with a tall head of sturdy leaves with a firm rib down the center, has a fine bitter herb taste

Iceberg (upper right) – has a dense head, and is pale white in its center, Iceberg is the most popular type of lettuce in the US

Lollo Rosso (lower right) -fringed, crinkled leaves tinged deep red at the ends with a tender yet crisp texture

Butterhead (lower left) – also known as Boston or Bibb, this type of head lettuce has a loose arrangement of leaves, with a sweet flavor and tender texture

Gem (upper left) – crisp like Romaine and sweet like Butterhead with a crunchy central stalk and thin, crisp leaves

If you have a favorite lettuce recipe, make sure to post it to our Facebook or Twitter!

Three Cheers for Dads!

Father’s Day is this weekend so make sure that your Handstand Kids are ready! These crafts will be fun to make and dad will definitely smile!

This cute card from Danielle’sPlace.com uses a paper cup to make a cute, bright sun!

How about a World’s Best Dad award from Kaboose?

Since Handstand Kids can’t get out of the kitchen, you might also want to make this yummy Arroz con Pollo or Chicken and Rice recipe from the Handstand Kids Mexican Cookbook!

Ingredients

1 pound chicken (pollo) breast (about 3 to 4 breasts)

2 cups rice (arroz)

1 garlic clove (ajo)

4 cups chicken broth

1 large onion (cebolla)

1 can diced tomatoes (tomates), with juice

1 green pepper

1 tablespoon cumin

1 bay leaf

¼ cup vegetable oil (aceite)

1 teaspoon salt

½ teaspoon pepper

Tools

Cutting board

Knife

Large bowl

Large pot with lid

Measuring cups

Measuring spoons

Oven mitt

Wooden spoon

Instructions

  1. On the cutting board, cut the pollo into bite-sized cubes, then place them into the large bowl. Season the pollo with the salt and pepper, then set the bowl aside. Thoroughly clean the cutting board before using it to chop the vegetables.
  2. Peel and chop the cebolla, ajo and green pepper and set them aside.
  3. In a large pot, heat the aceite over a medium-high heat. Add the cebolla, ajo and arroz. Wearing the oven mitt, stir continuously for 2 minutes.
  4. Add the pollo, broth, tomates, green peppers, cumin and bay leaf. Stir to combine.
  5. Bring to a boil for 5 minutes. Then reduce heat to low and cover with lid. Cook for about 35 minutes, or until pollo is cooked, arroz is soft and broth is absorbed.

Alternative

Substitute the pollo with a vegetarian option like tofu. Try brown rice for a healthier version.

Handstand Kids hope that you have a great Father’s Day with these recipes and crafts! Post a fun “daddy and me” moment to our Facebook and Twitter pages!

Outdoor Meals

We’ve talked about getting outdoors and playing outside, but Handstand Kids just can’t stay out of the kitchen! The following recipes can be made and eaten outside – what an awesome day for your kids!

You can’t go wrong with Ants on a Log. The crispy celery in contrast to the smooth peanut butter is always a crowd pleaser but eating it outside sets the mood for a fun day of outdoor play! Kraftrecipes

Salad sticks are yummy and good for you. Make sure you help your kids safely remove the food from the sharp skewers to avoid injuries. via SnackGirl

No outdoor meal is complete without Smore’s. Use a fire that is smoldering, not burning and make sure that you keep a close eye on the little ones as they toast up these tasty treats! via Kidscooking

Do you have a favorite recipe for making outdoors? Be sure to post pics to the Handstand Kids Facebook and Twitter!

 

Eating As A Family

Eating together as a family is very important, especially for younger children. Since Handstand Kids already enjoy being in the kitchen, make sure to also teach them that it is important to get together as a family. So many lessons can be learned around the table and here are a few great takeaways.

  • Communication
    • Sharing a meal provides a comfortable setting that allows children a time to talk. Discuss family issues and your day-to-day activities in an environment that puts everyone in the mood to talk!
  • Encourage healthy eating
    • Use your handstand kids cookbooks to create a yummy, kid friendly meal that they can help prepare! Eating in vastly reduces your calorie intake, and you know that your kids are not ingesting any unnecessary additives.
  • Helps promote proper etiquette
    • Kids are great at mimicking and by demonstrating proper table manners you can show them how to behave at the table
  • Embrace traditions, old and new
    • Remember and pass down old family recipes and also create new family favorites with the recipes from the Handstand Kids Cookbook. Try this recipe for Beef and Broccoli from our Handstand Kids Chinese Cookbook!

Make sure that you post pictures of your family enjoying a meal – whether or not you use a Handstand Kids recipe to our Facebook and Twitter!

 

Tomatoes are Tops!

Summer’s perfect weather lets us finally go outside after a long winter! Why not add some new activities into the mix by planting a summer garden? Gardening can be fun and easy and of course you can use what you grow in the kitchen! Tomatoes are a staple that many everyone enjoys and these growing tips from eHow.com that are specially designed for kids!

Materials:
• Tomato seeds
• Plastic pots
• Soil
• Trowel or shovel
• Wooden Stakes
• String

Instructions:
1. Poke holes in the bottom of the plastic pots if there are none for drainage
2. Fill the pots to the top with potting soil. Instruct your kids to put three seeds in each pot, pushing them just under the surface of the soil
3. Place the pots indoors in a sunny and warm location
4. Feel the dirt often for moisture. Water the pots if the soil feels dry
5. Wait for the seeds to sprout. Weed out weaker seedlings so that each pot only has one in it
6. Transplant the seedlings outside one the danger of frost has passed by digging a hole in the soil of your garden and carefully transferring the seedlings out of their pots and into the ground in a sunny spot.
7. Check soil moisture daily, watering the plants if it doesn’t rain.
8. Put the stakes in the ground for support as the tomato plants approach 1 foot tall. Gently tie the tomato plants to the stakes.
9. Instruct your kids to harvest the tomatoes when ripe. Have them twist each tomato by the stem to remove it, to avoid damaging the plant.

If you can’t wait for these beauties to grow, enjoy tomatoes with this delicious Guacamole recipe from the Handstand Kids Mexican Cookbook.

Farmer’s Market Chips, Pico de Gallo Salsa and Guacamole

Ingredients
4 plum tomatoes (tomates)
2 ripe Hass avocados (aguacates), halved and pitted
2 limes (limas), halved
½ white onion (cebolla)
1 cup fresh cilantro leaves
Salt and pepper
1 teaspoon jalapeno (optional)

Tools
Cutting board
Fork
Knife
Measuring cups
Measuring spoons
Medium bowl
Plastic gloves
Wooden spoon

Instructions for Pico De Gallo Salsa
1. Wearing the plastic gloves, dice the tomates, cebolla and optional jalapeno. Place them all into the medium bowl.
2. Chop the cilantro leaves and add to bowl.
3. Cut one lima in half, squeeze the juice into the bowl and mix well.
4. Add salt and pepper to taste.

At this stage, you’ve made pico de gallo! Continue on to make it into guacamole…
5. Spoon the aguacate meat into a bowl and use a fork to mash it into your desired texture.
6. Cut one lima in half, squeeze the juice into the bowl and mix well. Then add the pico de gallo to the aguacate and mix.
7. Add salt and pepper to taste.

Alternative
For mango salsa, dice 1 mango and add to Step 1 for a fruity version of the pico de gallo.

Will you be growing tomatoes? Post plant pictures on our Facebook and Twitter!

Go To Meals For Cooking On The Go

We all know that sometimes it’s just not possible to make an elaborate meal for the whole family.  We’ve compiled some of our favorite 5-minute (or something like that) meals that are easy to cook when you’re in a rush or on the go!

Most of our kiddos love turkey sandwiches, and need to eat more fruits! Try this Turkey Apple Melt Sandwich from Shape Magazine.

We especially love tostadas because everyone around the table can top his or her tostada with whatever he or she pleases! Check out these Black Bean Tostadas from Our Way To Eat.

This Toasted Ravioli from Discover Veggie looks delicious and SO easy to make! This looks totally doable with several other pastas, as well!

Any other thoughts? Be sure to post them on our Facebook wall!

 

Healthy Foods To Fill You Up

We’re constantly struggling with finding the right snacks that will also keep us from continuously munching.  We found this article from Everyday Health featuring the 10 most filling healthy foods and wanted to share these with you!

  1. Sweet prunes – this high fiber food is a favorite or ours!
  2. Nuts – we love almonds and nuts of all kinds, but be sure to keep your intake to a minimum.
  3. Vegetables – you know we LOVE veggies.  They’re low in calories and super filling.
  4. Oatmeal – this is one of our favorite ways to start our day.
  5. Soup – eating soup before your entree, typically means you’ll eat less of your huge meal.
  6. Dips – eat a low cal dip like hummus with your veggies when snacking.
  7. Lean proteins – eating lean proteins will not only give you energy, but will keep you full longer.
  8. Beans and legumes – this high protein food is terrific for snacking and meals, alike.
  9. Potato skins – we absolutely love the high-fiber ‘tater skins! Plus they give our bakers an extra crunch.
  10. Fresh fruit – a bowl of berries or a whole peach, is a terrific healthy and rejuvenating snack.

What are your favorite healthy snacks? Tell us about it on our Facebook wall.