My kids are culinary opposites: one eats chives from the garden, purple onions, and lots of meat! The other one likes easily-digested cake and white bread.
Sigh. Keeping them both fed and happy is a challenge!
It’s not the ONLY way I get my finicky kids to eat healthily, but I do love to sneak in the healthy foods – for the cake-eater in particular. He’s onto me, but has stopped caring. These two healthy desserts can actually double as breakfast at our house. Have you read the ingredients in some of those granola bars?
At least these are real food!
Chocolate Cake with Supersecret Beets
2c beets, cooked, peeled, shredded (you can do these the day before)
½ c melted butter
½ c olive oil
1 c sugar (organic beets are so sweet, you can use ¾)
2 tsp vanilla extract
3 Large eggs
1c wheat flour
1 c white flour
¾ c cocoa powder
2 tsp baking soda
½ tsp sea salt
Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Mix wet ingredients & beets. Sift together flours, powder, soda, salt. Fold dry ingredients into the wet ones. Bake in a buttered bundt, sheet cake, or two small round cake pans 35-45 minutes, until a knife comes out clean. Also great regular or mini muffins. We eat it plain, but cream cheese icing would be great, as is frozen yogurt.
We also play with our food! Here a chocolate beet muffin serves as a little fairy cottage, while a triangle of fresh pineapple serves as a teeny tiny pet house.
Clever Pumpkin Pie
I bake my pumpkins, whole, on a cookie sheet. 350 degrees until you can pierce it with a fork. 30-60 minutes depending on size. Then cutting, peeling, and seeding are a cinch.
Combine in a blender:
1 c. cooked pumpkin
¾ to 1 c brown sugar
1 small can evaporated milk Whip or puree!
Ginger, cinnamon, nutmeg to taste.
Pour into a pie crust. Bake at 425 degrees for 15 minutes, then reduce heat to 325 until a knife comes out clean (ca. 40 minutes). This recipe makes a light custard-like pie. Top it with toasted nuts or frozen yogurt to keep it on the healthy side. For a gluten-free option cook the filling in ramekins or glass baking pans as a pudding or flan. I do make this a lot in the fall, and adding just ginger once, traditional holiday spices once, or serving it with frozen yogurt are great ways to diversify it.