Lunch Lady

As many of you may know, I am the “Lunch Lady” on Tuesday nights for the kids at my church.  We serve them dinner before their lesson starts.  They range in age from kindergarten to Fifth grade.  I don’t have kids of my own, so I jumped into this job rather blindly.  But I have enough friends with kids to have an idea.  That being stated, I have been on the lookout for recipes to make.  RECIPES that aren’t full of junk.  I won’t say the meals I make are super healthy (or at least by MY standards), but I’d like to think that by making small, significant choices, I am doing a little better at providing them with some nutrition.

I have found Jessica Seinfeld’s book, “Deceptively Delicious” to be a world of help.  She now has a website and food products to help make her recipes that much easier.  The idea behind her book is to incorporate veggies and other healthful foods into everyday recipes without the kids knowing.  Deceptive? Perhaps.  Genius?  Yes.

The first dinner I tried was her “Tortilla Cigars.”  Basic cheesy-chicken burritos-but with a twist.  Mash up all the ingredients in a bowl and add some purèed veggies…..Seriously, the kids won’t know. I had one little girl tell me she didn’t like carrots, yet she ate the burritos right up…

One of the staples behind her recipes are purèed fruits and veggies.  Steam ’em up, mash ’em up, stir them in.  Cake batter.  Spaghetti sauce.  Cookies.  Chicken nuggets.  REALLY.

Tortilla Cigars Jessica Seinfeld

This recipe is easy.  To serve 6, I cook 1 cup of chicken, and steam yellow squash and carrots (about 2 carrots and 1 bigger squash).  I throw the veggies (1/2 cup each, steamed) into a food processor and blend until nice and smooth.  I throw the chicken into the food processor and chop well. I throw it all in a bowl.  Then I add 1/2 cup Cheddar cheese, 1/2 block (4 oz) cream cheese, 1/4 tsp. garlic powder and 1/4 tsp. salt.  Mix well.  Spread onto tortillas of your choice.  (I’m easing the kids into whole-grains.  I’m determined to have them converted by the end of the year!)

tortilla cigars_Jessica Seinfeld recipe

Roll up the tortillas and cut in half.  Place on a cookie sheet seam-side-down and bake in the oven on 250 degrees for 5-7 minutes.

Tortilla Cigars Jessica Seinfeld Recipe 1

We served ours with carrots and grapes.  Many of our kids LOVE these and always ask when I am going to make them again.  I take that as a sign that this recipe is a keeper.  🙂

For more great recipe ideas, head over to Jessica Seinfeld’s website.  You won’t be disappointed.  Coming soon:  My version of her Spaghetti & Meatballs and the Pita Pizza!  Check out her book, “Deceptively Delicious” at your local library or order on Amazon here.  Another great resource is the Sneaky Chef’s website.  I’ve had requests for brownies, so I am hoping to try her brownie recipe soon!

What do YOUR kids/grandkids like to eat?  I’d love to know how you get them to eat veggies!  What surprisingly healthy foods do they enjoy?

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