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Sep 27, 2012

How I Get My Picky Eaters to Eat Veggies!

I'll admit it; I don't particularly like cooking dinner because one of my kids will have a complaint about something I make.  I do love to cook for people who enjoy eating good food but that doesn't happen too often.  Usually what happens at dinnertime is one kid will hate (I know it's a strong word, but that's what they say) a certain vegetable and the other kid will love it.  I have found a way to make everyone happy at dinner (well most of the time) and make all the veggies I love.  

  Since soccer practice got moved to the two nights I work, now our family can sit down and eat two meals together during the weekdays, Yay!  
Here's what I do... are you ready?  I make at least two or three or sometimes four veggies for dinner depending on what I have in the fridge.  The kids will have to like at least a few of the veggies I cook.  I usually make just a little of each one and I almost always just put a little olive oil and sea salt on them and bake them on a cookie sheet.  They always come out delicious, if I don't say so myself.  

On Monday I wanted to try to bake a whole butternut squash because they looked so good at the store.  All you do is cut the butternut squash in half (actually that part was not very easy for me) then clean out all the seeds.

Next, I put about a tablespoon of butter on each squash but I later realized that it was a little too much butter so next time I will use less. Then I sprinkled on a tablespoon of brown sugar on each squash and a little sea salt and pepper.  Yum, sweet and savory!  
My friend told me that next time I should try putting some real maple syrup on them and then I wouldn't have the extra calories of butter and wouldn't have to use sugar.  I'll try it next time and let you know how it taste.  

Now, I googled how long I should bake it for and it said for 25 minutes at 350 degrees.

Wrong answer!  These beauties took a little over an hour till they were easy to scoop out with a spoon.  They were definitely worth the wait.

Since Emma hates squash because of the texture (the girl even hates pumpkin pie and whip cream) I made her and Alex's favorite... onions!  I know, go figure, I just tried it on a whim and they loved them ever since.  Now I make onions a few times a week.  
I usually use those purple onions but I saw these Hawaiian Sweet Onions at Trader Joe's and tried them too.  

You will need some olive oil and sea salt.  Since I do most of my vegetables this way I bought one of these Misto things.  Let me tell you it is the greatest thing ever.  I used to toss my vegetables in olive oil but sometimes I would use too much.  With the Misto I can just give them a light spray.  You just pour your own olive oil into the Misto and pump the top and spray.  I got my here.

Slice your onions as thin as you can.  Put some sunglasses on if you start to cry, I do.  

 Spray the cookie sheet with olive oil or pour it on, then lay the onions on it and spray them with olive oil and sprinkle some sea salt on them.  If you don't have the Misto, just toss the onions with olive oil, they will break apart, but that's all right.  Try to lay them in a single layer on the cookie sheet.  Bake them at 350 for around fifteen minutes.  Keep an eye on them because the skinny ones will brown fast.   

Now I wish I had an after picture of the onions but we are all so hungry that I forgot to take the picture!  I promise they looked good and we ate them all up.  I did have a lot of left over squash so I took some to work for lunch the next day and froze the rest for another dinner. 

I do this same technique with asparagus, chopped kale (kale chips are delicious, that will be another post), brussels sprouts (which I hated until I made them this way, now I love them), bell peppers and sometimes I buy the bag of pre-cubed butternut squash at Trader Joe's and throw them on a cookie sheet.   

What are your favorite ways to cook vegetables?

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