Thursday, May 12, 2011

Hide and Sneak!

Last night's dinner included Mr. Daisy Mae's Spaghetti Squash, Mediterranean-style.  If you've watched the video, you know this is a simple recipe that substitutes as pasta. Now if I told our daughter we were having squash, she'd turn her nose up quicker than you could blink an eye. However, by disguising the spaghetti squash as pasta, I found everyone wants seconds!
If you're trying to get more vegetables in your family's diet, there are lots of ways to "hide and sneak." Not only can you substitute spaghetti squash for regular noodles in spaghetti and casseroles, but you can also add vegetables to the sauce itself. Add finely chopped carrots, onions, or celery...or if your kids are really picky, puree' the vegetables into a smooth mixture before adding to the sauce. Vegetables can also be mixed in with scrambled eggs or omelets, or they can be hidden in favorite soups. It's also easy to add a few veggies to a pizza...With a favorite pizza sauce and cheese, the healthier toppings can go unnoticed by those who resist eating vegetables.
It's not just picky kids who don't get enough vegetables in their diets. Most of us have trouble fulfilling our daily requirement of fruits and vegetables. (If you're not sure how many servings you should eat, check out this handy calculator.) I've found the easiest way to add fresh produce to my diet is just to have it available. By cutting up raw vegetables and having them in the refrigerator ready to eat, I'm much more likely to snack on this healthy choice. By keeping lettuce and sliced tomatoes ready, or an avocado nearby, I can easily add these vegetables to a sandwich or burger.
When it comes to those of us who know better, it's exactly the opposite of picky eaters...Don't hide the veggies, but rather keep them in plain sight. You'll find you can increase your vegetable intake without much effort, and you'll be sneaking some healthy habits into your routine.

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