Editor’s note: The following is a guest post written by Annabel Karmel, the British children's chef and kiddie cookbook author. This week Annabel shares breakfast tips for keeping tots fed and full before heading off to school.
Don’t let your child skip breakfast. If your child claims not to be hungry first thing or there is no time to fit in breakfast, think back to the previous evening. When did they last eat and what time did they go to bed? The earlier your child eats and the earlier they go to bed, the more likely it is that they will want food first thing and the easier it will be to get them up 15 minutes earlier. A good tip is to get as much ready the night before so that you are not stressed in the morning. Breakfast need take no longer than 10 minutes from start to finish. Cereal with milk or peanut butter on toast, a yogurt or some cheese, and a glass of fruit juice would provide an excellent breakfast for a child.
If your child’s not hungry at breakfast you can send him off to school with a healthy muffin and a smoothie. Try my Apple and Carrot Muffins.
Eggs are packed full of nutrients and make great breakfast food. How about a Breakfast Burrito – scrambled eggs with tasty extras like ham, grated cheese, or chopped tomato inside a wrap, or try my simple recipe for the Perfect Omelette.
Try to include fresh fruit – toast with peanut butter, sliced bananas and a drizzle of honey, add berries or dried fruit to cereal, see my Granola recipe and find fun ways to serve fruit like melon balls or half a kiwi in an egg cup.
On weekends encourage your child to help prepare breakfast – pancakes, French toast, pancakes, and smoothies are fun to make.
. . . Annabel
Get the recipes for Annabel's Carrot and Apple Muffins, Perfect Omelette, and Granola when you read more.
1 cup whole wheat flour
¼ cup sugar
2 tbsp non fat dry milk
1 ½ teaspoons baking powder
½ teaspoon cinnamon
¼ teaspoon salt
¼ teaspoon ground ginger
½ cup vegetable oil
2 tbsp honey
2 tbsp maple syrup
2 eggs, lightly beaten
½ tsp pure vanilla essence
1 large apple, peeled and grated
½ cup carrots, peeled and grated
½ cup raisins
These deliciously moist muffins are easy to prepare and will keep well for up to five days. They are good for breakfast and can be eaten on the way to school if your child is in a rush. They are a great way to get your child to eat fruit and veggies all in one go. Children would have fun making these at the weekend and they could even make mini muffins – these will need only 12 to 15 minutes baking time.
Pre-heat the oven to 350F. Combine the flour, sugar non fat dry milk, baking powder, cinnamon. Salt and ginger in a mixing bowl. In a separate bowl, combine the honey, maple syrup, eggs and vanilla essence. Beat lightly with a wire whisk until blended. Add the grated apple, carrots and raisins to the liquid mixture and stir until just combined.
Line a muffin tray with paper cups and fill until two-thirds full. Bake for 20 to 25 minutes. You can also make mini muffins which are ideal for children they will take 15 to 20 minutes to bake.
Salt and pepper
A pat of butter
Possible Omelette Fillings
- Small handful of ham cut into strips with thinly sliced tomato and some grated cheese
- Quarter cup grated hard cheese such as Cheddar or Gruyere
- 1 tsp chopped soft herbs – try parsley ad dill, chives or chervil
- 1 tsp each of diced sautéed red onion and canned corn plus one thinly sliced scallion
- Handful of sliced white button mushrooms sautéed in a pat of butter
Here’s how you make a delicious basic Omelette. Serve it plain or try one of my delicious filling suggestions, or invent your own.
Break the eggs into a bowl and whisk them until they’re slightly frothy. Season with salt and pepper.
Heat a small frying pan – about 7in – over a medium heat. Melt the butter and when it starts to foam, pour in the eggs.
Stir the eggs once or twice, then leave to cook undisturbed for about 30 seconds.
When the eggs start to set at the edge of the pan, lift the cooked edge toward the center. At the same time, tip the pan so the uncooked egg runs into the space that’s left until there’s no runny egg left on the surface of the omelette.
Now add your filling. Fold the omelette over heat for a minute or two and then transfer to a plate and serve immediately.
2 cups rolled oats
1/2 coarsely chopped pecans
1/4 unsweetened flaked coconut
1/4 tsp salt
1/3-cup soft brown sugar
2 tbsp canola or sunflower oil
4 tbsp (1/4 cup) maple syrup
This delicious granola is very versatile. You can have it for breakfast with milk but it’s also very good on its own as a snack or layered with yogurt, honey and fresh berries.
Pre-heat the oven to 300ºF. Put the oats, pecans, coconut, salt and sugar in a large bowl and mix together with a wooden spoon.
Whisk the oil and maple syrup together in a small bowl. Pour over the oats and mix well. Spread out on a lightly oiled baking sheet and bake in the center of the oven for 40–45 minutes, stirring every 10 minutes. Transfer to a bowl, stir in the raisins and leave to cool.
Have a picky eater that refuses to eat his greens or a lil girl who is begging to be your sous chef, but you don't know how she can help? Submit your cooking and feeding questions to The Children's Table group over in the LilSugar Community and we'll have Annabel answer the questions each month!