How To Get Kids Enjoying Eating Greens

Approximately 25{abffe3e1318a9624791ae4064333f2f75374704dc13d09152fd440b16c9e1c0c} of people are born with an over-developed receptor for anything bitter. Vegetable haters, however, will be delighted to know that the sensitivity to bitterness is all in the genes.

Nutritionist Rosemary Stanton says “While that is great for those who want to be discerning with wine, cheese or coffee, it also allows them to taste the bitterness in cabbage, broccoli, cauliflower, leafy greens and eggplant”.

Rosemary says “Coincidentally, those are the ones packed with health-protective antioxidants, vitamins and minerals. The bitterness has been slowly bred out of veggies, which is not really a good thing, as you have to eat more of the vegetable to get the same amount of goodness.”

In Pemberton in the southwest of Western Australia Sophie Zalokar has just opened Foragers Field Kitchen and Cooking School. She says green veggies are particularly high in oxalic acid which is why children – who have a much more sensitive palate than adults – often, find them distasteful.

Rosemary claims “Everybody starts off liking sweet things and the taste for bitterness develops with maturity. So children need to taste things like spinach to become desensitized to it”.

To get your offspring to enjoy eating their greens involve them from the growing process to cooking the veggies. After that add some excitement to the taste with some of these ideas: 1. Salt veggies such as eggplant and zucchini for 15 minutes to stop the bitterness. Rinse and steam. Don’t overcook

2. Layer zucchini slices, chopped spinach or cooked carrots into lasagna

3. Stir broccoli florets into macaroni cheese and pasta dishes

4. Even out the strong taste with a robust seasoning or sauce, such as oyster sauce, for broccoli, leafy greens, brussel sprouts and cauliflower

5. Serve leafy greens with a drizzle of olive-oil-flavoured with lemon, garlic or chilli pepper, which softens the taste

6. Glaze everything – mix up a squirt of honey, minced garlic, ginger and a shot of balsamic

7. Go back to the 1970s with Put in cheese in with cauliflower or broccoli

8. Toss goat’s cheese, manchego or ricotta through greens with garlic along with some toasted slivered almonds

9. crunchy crudites and a dip – French onion, yoghurt laced with garlic or light sour cream

10. Stuff anything and everything – peppers, zucchini, eggplant, celery sticks, and mushrooms.

11. Butter, butter, butter. Add lashings of it and chopped parsley and salt and pepper and your carrots will love you

Even if you only try one or two of the ideas above, you will be agreeably surprised at the results, even among the adults in your family.