If your kids are picky eaters and you’re worried about the quality of their nutrition, the cookbook, No Whine With Dinner: 150 Healthy, Kid-Tested Recipes from The Meal Makeover Moms, may be just what you’re looking for.
“With kids, it’s not just about taste,” said Liz Weiss, co-author of the book. “It’s about smell, look and texture which is very important.” Weiss and her co-author Janice Newell Bissex both have two children, and a long list of credentials in the culinary and nutrition worlds. Their first cookbook, The Moms’ Guide to Meal Makeovers: Improving the Way Your Family Eats, One Meal at a Time, was published in 2004.
The idea for writing a family-friendly cookbook came to Weiss at the beginning of the obesity bubble. While at the playground talking to other moms, Weiss recalls repeatedly hearing them speak about how their children wouldn’t eat anything but chicken nuggets and macaroni and cheese.
Taking into account that skinny children can eat a lot of junk, and heavy children may eat healthy but lack portion control, Weiss wanted to find a way to improve kids’ nutrition by encouraging parents to feed their children the right foods. Her goal was to take family-favorite recipes and give them a makeover.
Keeping the eating experience as a whole for the child in mind is key, says Weiss. “There are certain ingredients that you won’t find in our recipes, such as diced tomatoes,” she said. “We do use crushed tomatoes and tomato sauce, and chopped nuts, but we finely chop them. Kids don’t like lumps.”
Weiss also highlights the importance of not straying too far from a child’s comfort zone.
Weiss also recommends stocking a pantry with staples such as whole wheat flour, ground flax seed, Omega-3 eggs, canola oil, frozen fruits and vegetables, canned pureed pumpkin, canned boneless skinless salmon, pasta sauce, salsa, flour tortillas and reduced-fat cheddar and mozzarella cheeses.
For any mom apprehensive about giving their child’s meals a makeover, Weiss says to keep it simple, with basic ingredients, easy-to-assemble dishes and simple flavors.
“Build from there, but keep it familiar,” she said. “Most importantly, have fun doing it.”
More information on Weiss, Newell Bissex and their cookbooks can be found at mealmakeovermoms.com .
Their cookbook can be purchased from Amazon.com, or on their website where you can receive an additional 10 percent off using the promotional code MOMS2010.
This article was written by Ashley Dowse, and originally appeared in the Lexington Patch.