Getting my little boy to eat veggies was simple when he was weaning. He tried anything we put in front of him and seemed to enjoy it. Then something happened. Anything colourful started to offend him. He got better but he can still detect green food even if he doesn’t see if go in his mouth. It is quite astonishing. I worry that he is going to get in the habit of eating the wrong foods. I don’t want to force George to eat foods he doesn’t want to eat as I think meal times should be a pleasurable experience. Here is one of my pasta bol recipes for packing veggies into my fussy little toddler.
The recipe involves making an excess of food so that you can freeze portions to make life easier in the future. I have intentionally left salt out of this recipe but if it something you add to meals then go ahead.
Adele’s Yummy Pasta Bol (makes about 6 servings)
- 450g beef mince
- 2 cloves of garlic
- 2 carrots grated
- 1 large courgette grated
- 2 Peppers finely diced
- 2 Onions diced
- 2 cans tinned tomatoes
- 250ml easy stock (recipe) or a low salt stock cube (optional)
- 2 tbsp tomato puree
- 1 tsp dried parsley
- 1 tsp dried oregano
- 1 tsp dried basil
- 1 tbsp brown sugar (optional)
- Juice of 1 lemon (when serving)
- Parmesan grated (for serving)
- Pasta shapes
- Rapeseed oil (for frying)
Using a medium heat fry off the onions and peppers in a large frying pan sing rapeseed oil – Or other fat with high smoking point. Add the mince and fry until browned and broken into small chunks. Stir in the carrots and courgette. Heat for a further 3 minutes until the veggies soften.Add the garlic and heat for 30 seconds before adding the tinned tomatoes and stock. Bring to a simmer and add the herbs and tomato puree. If the sauce is quite tart from the tomatos you can also add the tbsp of brown sugar which will take the edge off. Cook for a further 10 minutes to allow the flavours to infuse.
Meanwhile boil your pasta shapes. You can either boil enough for the serving you are making or make enough for multiple meals and then freeze along with the excess portions.
If you are making this recipe to freeze, portion out the food and allow to cool before freezing.
If you are serving, add a squeeze of lemon juice to the sauce about 30 seconds before removing from the heat and serve with the pasta. Grate over some Parmesan (if your toddler will eat it). The pasta bol dish can be pureed for weaning children.
This is a meal the whole family can enjoy. The grated carrot adds a nice sweetness whilst adding a thickening texture, as does the courgette.