As the long summer holiday looms ahead, many parents will be considering how to ensure their little ones eat healthily outside of the structure of school meals. As many children would choose to reach for the crisps and chocolate options, making healthier snacks more appealing by getting creative could be the key, says Colourfultaste. According to the pro-pepper organisation, parents can incorporate the healthy pepper in a variety of guises to make it a fun additional ingredient to the summer snacks and meals.
The pepper is a versatile ingredient, coming in a number of different colours – as well as the usual red, orange, yellow and green, the lesser known white, brown and purple can be used to inject creativity into any dish. They can be enjoyed raw in salads, barbequed, baked, or added to warm dishes such as stews and stir-fries. In addition, this kitchen staple is extremely healthy, not only full of Vitamin C (three times than can be found in an orange) but is also a good source of calcium.
Here are some simple tips of ways to make healthy eating fun this summer with peppers:
· Create a flower’ salad or snack using crudités. At the centre, half a fresh tomato forms the ‘eye’, while sliced red or orange peppers are the petals. Sliced green peppers can also be used to illustrate the stalk or grass. A tasty treat for the budding gardener!
· An alternative smiley face. As a change to the traditional ‘bangers and mash’ try a healthy fun illustration of a face featuring peppers. Using a healthy wrap as a base, cherry tomatoes for the eyes, a slice of orange pepper for the nose and eyebrows, and a red slice of pepper representing the mouth.
Carved peppers. Similar to the much loved Halloween Pumpkin, carving out eyes and a mouth into a whole fresh pepper is a great way of bringing fun into food. You can even then use it as a case for strips of pepper as crudités.
Stuffed peppers can make a novel dish for children as they can eat the filling and then the ‘bowl’ or eat both together. Stuff the pepper with another healthy filling, such as rice with other vegetables chopped up