How to Cook Healthy Without Your Family Knowing About It
When I came across a hub request by RGraf on "How to Cook Healthy Without Your Family Knowing About It," I had to smile because I am faced with this challenge while cooking, so had to answer this request. I admit I took my time in finishing the hub, as the request was placed two months ago. I am a procrastinator at times.
Let me explain.
My significant other Phil, hates most vegetables. If I serve him lunch with a veggie, he will eat everything, except the veggies, unless it's corn, onions, peppers and tomatoes. This he enjoys, as long as they have a good flavor with seasonings.
When we food shop, we don't stick together in the supermarket. We both take our shopping carts, separate, as we each know what to buy and have grown accustomed to him being in charge of picking up the detergent, pasta, breads, and other staples, while I focus on other goods. The first section I visit is the fruit and veggie aisle, and he goes to the snack section. When we meet while shopping, we may wink, wave, or act silly, we even bump carts.
I am not a veggie lover, but make an effort to eat reasonably and try to eat them several times a week. When I moved in with him 5 years ago, I felt limited in what I could cook for him. I was concerned that he was not getting the proper nutrients, yet, he is a grown man, and I really couldn't force him to eat his veggies, so dropped the subject and did the best I could with the vegetables he would eat.
Being a believer that what we focus on, we can attract, I threw this concern out there in a semi prayer, and once again let it go.
Then the most wonderful thing happened. I watched an "Oprah" show where Jerry Seinfeld's wife Jessica who wrote a cooking book entitled "Deceptively Delicious" was being interviewed. She guides the reader to mouth watering recipes that includes vegetable purees that can be added to meals, snacks and even baked cakes, without changing the taste or texture of the food. Children in the audience tasted her cooking and loved it! The funny thing is, this book is to get your kids to eat their vegetables.
I purchased spinach, broccoli, cauliflower, and a host of other veggies ready to experiment with the purees. I was so happy to have these vegetables in our kitchen.
My first experiment was to add the cauliflower puree to a baked potato. I scooped out the pulp from inside of the potato, mixed it with the puree, seasoned with salt and pepper, put it back in the shell and topped it with cheese and bacon bits; baked it for a few minutes until the cheese melted, and he loved it. There was no veggie taste in the potatoe. I have done this with lean ground beef meat, add a vegetable puree, and it actually enhances the texture of the meal.
I am sharing one recipe from Jessica Seinfield's book "Deceptively Delicious” as its yummy and will give you an idea of what the recipes are like. Even toddlers enjoy it!
Macaroni and Cheese
1 1/2 c. elbow macaroni
Nonstick cooking spray
1 T. olive oil
1 T. flour
1/2 c. nonfat milk
1/2 c. cauliflower or butternut squash puree
1 1/2 c. reduced fat shredded cheddar cheese
4 oz. reduced-fat or nonfat cream cheese
1/2 t. salt
1/8 t. paprika
1/8 t. pepper
1. Cook pasta according to package directions. Drain.
2. While the macaroni is cooking, coat a large saucepan with cooking spray and heat over medium heat. Add then oil, then the flour, and cook, stirring constantly, until the mixture resembles a thick paste but has not browned, 1 to 2 minutes.
3. Add the milk and cook, stirring every now and then, until the mixture begin to thicken, 3-4 minutes. Add the vegetable puree, cheddar, cream cheese, and seasonings Stir until the cheese is melted and the sauce is smooth. Stir in the macaroni and serve warm.
I found it easy to make. I am not a professional cook by any means, and no, if I have guests, I wouldn't add the purees as I don't think I can pull it off with guests like Jessica Seinfield does, but for both of us it’s the perfect solution. Phil enjoys what I cook for him, and I am happy that some of our meals now have added vegetables, without him wincing.
I was rewarded tonight by finishing this article, found there is a book entitled "The Sneaky Chef: How to Cheat on Your Man (In the Kitchen!) Hiding Healhty Foods in Hearty Meals Any Guy Will Love" by Missy Chase Lapine. Lucky Phil (or poor Phil), more recipes to experiment with!