I mentioned earlier this week that I am taking a kids' nutrition class online. I’ve made quite a few new recipes this week with the kids and can say that we have been mostly successful. The kids are eating more vegetables for sure. Perhaps the carb filled vacation that we just had was overload for them too. Anyway, one of the things that I tried to make this week was homemade strawberry roll-ups. I sorted through a bunch of recipes (some of which you can see here), each with slightly different sugar content, each with slightly different technique, but all involving puréeing the fruit then baking it at 170° for several hours. This seemed pretty easy.
I did not use sugar, but I did use a half of a very ripe banana to sweeten my berries. I also used a little bit of lemon juice because that seemed to be a common add. I did not simmer the purée before baking. While the fruit purée was hard to spread out evenly on the pan to 1/8” as recommended, I found that using the silpat, I could swirl it around and get close. By the time it baked, it was perfectly smooth. My fruit leather baked for about 4 hours at 170° and was actually a little over-done. The solution (thanks to Our Best Bites) was to brush a little water on the cooked fruit to make it pliable again. Worked like a charm.
I love that the kids think this is delicious and there is no added sugar. I will definitely make fruit roll-ups again.
We also tried a couple of new breakfast items from the class menu this week: quinoa pancakes and strawberry breakfast cookies. Both of these were gluten free and used some ingredients that I didn’t have readily on hand. I know everyone is cooking with quinoa (and kale) right now, but I still hadn’t given it a try. Jury is still out on this one. Word on the street is that quinoa has a lot of protein so I’m willing to keep trying it with my pasta hungry kids. Maybe not in pancakes though.
The strawberry breakfast cookies were much better than the pancakes. Gus (the worst cereal and eggo offender) is still not convinced but he has at least tried them a couple of times. I think Théa would eat anything with a strawberry in it. The recipe we used is from the class packet, so I can't reference it here, but it is similar to this strawberry breakfast cookie recipe - it has an oat base, and uses coconut oil and some seeds. Give this a try. It was great to give the kids with a scrambled egg before school. Let me know what you think.