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Let’s Feed the Beasts

Hot Dogs with a Sweet Side

By August 16, 2017 Let's Feed the Beasts

Hot dogs are always a crowd favorite, but when the T-Rex went through the picky phase, we had to kick these up a notch! 

Hot dogs are such a standard for most kids. All you parents are nodding your heads and thinking, ” and fires, and chicken nuggets, and pizza.” It gets to the point when you think you may want to just lie and say they no longer make them any longer. The stores have run out, or that McDonalds burned to the ground. Yes, I have said the last one. It saved me some time in the play area filled with screaming kiddos while I had a migraine!

I had to make my son believe he could eat hot dogs again. I didn’t want his minimal food list to shrink any more. Since I am a sweet toothed kinda gal, I decided to raid the baking shelf. Brown sugar jumped out at me. Now, judge if you will, but I didn’t use a ton, just enough to make it amazing. I believe I used about a quarter cup for like a family of 5 servings. After I have the dogs cooking for a bit, I sprinkle the brown sugar over it and let it melt around them. A warm delicious syrup develops and you turn the hot dogs over and over and coat them evenly. The results, the kid devoured them!

Now, hot dogs are lovely, in moderation. We decided after trying hot dogs this way a few times, we were going to be sneaky. We made brats. I was giddy when T-Rex ate every last bite. Pushing our luck, and crossing our fingers, I made polish sausage. Again, he ate every bite. It was like a dream come true!! I was giddy on two levels, I could eat something more than hot dogs, and our mighty man was eating! Toddler feedings are a rough thing right! Now he also loves getting to have his breakfast sausage made with a bit of brown sugar.

We decided to even expand our boundaries and have tried this on chicken strips, and we had some success! Sometimes, just thinking a wee bit out of the box is just the way to get those little people eating again. Do you have a secret to get your kids eating again? I would love to hear from you on what you try to get them to gobble up dinner again! I am always on the hunt for little tips and tricks. They change their minds so fast it helps to have a pocket full of go to’s!

 

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Summer Time Snack-a-holics

By June 20, 2017 Let's Feed the Beasts

I love summertime. I worked in education for 18 years and I can remember that at times, I LIVED for summer. There is something exciting when summer arrives. You’ve watched the snow melt away, the leaves and flowers bud out, and now you are enjoying this fresh green world around you. Now, where you live you may not experience that, but I live in Idaho. We not only have 4 seasons, but we have whiplash weather that changes so frequently it is not unusual to see people walking around with a jacket and shorts year round.

As much as I love summer, and I love the kids being out of school, the down side is the kids are out of school and they become bottomless pits of feeding insanity. They have lost their way with no hard structure, and to fill the boredom they search out and destroy any sort of food in the house. At times I swear I need to hide any leather shoes we may have, they may think its jerky!

So how do you cope with the swarm of hungry invading your kitchen for 3 months. Well, you can pray you have a super bountiful garden and can send them out to forage, or you can try a few of these ideas.

SNACKS 

1. Make your own trail mix. You know best what your kiddos love. Hit up the bulk section at the grocery store and have them help pick out the perfect blend of healthy and maybe a bit of a fun surprise. ( I am a die hard for M&Ms in my trail mix. )

2. Homemade Popsicles. I absolutely love these. We got our Popsicle makers from Walmart here and we have had such fun creating great flavors and adding in fun things. You can mix up lemonade and drop in fresh strawberries or raspberries and get a cool treat with a tasty snack.

3. Football Ice Cream.   Not only are your kids hungry , but maybe the ” I’m bored!” comments have started flying. I love this because it gets them moving and playing and they have created their own reward at the end. The folks at Food.com have a great recipe you can give a try to at this site .

4. Frozen Grapes. Oh these are tasty and perfect on those really hot days. Wash your grapes, roll them in some sugar and toss them in the freezer for just a bit. The cool and sweet treat is sure to please, and even though you use sugar, it still fairly healthy. You can also try using other fruits like strawberries, raspberries, or even maybe blueberries. I’ve never tried it with blueberries, but I bet it’s tasty.

These are just a small sampling of quick and easy ideas that the kids can even help you make with minimal fuss and muss. Then once they are ready, they can enjoy them and be ready for the next round of who knows what!! We personally like to build forts and play chase.

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A Pumpkin Chili for All Seasons

By June 9, 2017 Let's Feed the Beasts

My hubby and I love to make dinner. It seems to be the only meal we get to all sit down together and eat. I have my other meals with my little goober, but as a while family, oh dinner is it. I tend to love to do things a little bit more complex, and the husband, he loves simple things. We can both agree however and this one recipe we found years ago. Pumpkin Chili.

I have no idea where we found the original recipe at, but even when we first made it we started doing what we do best. We modified and modified and made it our own! We are avid chili lovers anyway, and this just never seems to make up the same way no matter how hard we try to do it exactly the same. It is always amazing, and always different. The best part, Little T loves it! He adds cracks to his bowl, because he swears it is soup, but if he’s happy I’m happy. Especially since we are at the lovely phase of everything is icky or gross, or looks weird, or lord knows what!!

The recipe calls for it to be made in a Dutch oven, but we just use a big ol pot on the stove. SO if you are a Dutch oven lover, this is truly for you. If you have no idea what a Dutch oven is, grab a soup pot, stock pot, or a cook tub of some kind. If you love pumpkin, and even if you hate pumpkin, this is also for you because the pumpkin taste is light to non existent, and the texture oh the texture, pumpkin lovers  you will melt! So without further ado, I will present you the recipe that I tweaked. I can also post the original if anyone is interested. I hope you enjoy this as much as my little crew does.

Sausage Pumpkin Chili

1 pound pork sausage

1 small onion diced up

3/4 cup green peppers ( we omit these sometimes, but Hubby loves them)

2 Tbsp Chili powder

2 tsp cumin

8 oz tomato sauce

15 oz can of pumpkin

2 cups water

1/2 tsp salt

1/2 tsp mulling spice

1/2 tsp- 1 tsp garlic powder

*optional *

corn

rice

You are going to get a pan and brown the sausage and onions together. Drain off the grease from the sausage. Add all the other ingredients to the sausage and onion mixture. Bring it to a boil; cover it and simmer for 25- 30 minutes. You now have a beautiful chili you will want to serve it topped with cheese, and maybe even green onions or parsley.

 

We always have left overs, and this freezes beautifully.

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Quick and easy lunch for Cheese lovers.

By March 28, 2017 Let's Feed the Beasts

When I was a little girl my parents had to find interesting ways to feed our pack. My sisters and I all had very different tastes. However, come lunch time if they told us we were having bubble cheese, our day was made! This simple lunch had everything you could want cheese, bread, a pinch of salt and pepper, three midgets gazing into the oven window. OK, maybe you don’t need that last one, but it happened every time we made this. I find myself still gazing in and excitedly calling my own kids over to watch it bubble up.

This is not only a great lunch for a finicky eater, but also when you just haven’t quite made it to the grocery store yet. It has few ingredients and throws together at lightening speed. I hope you and your kids love the way the cheese grows and bubbles up as it cooks as much as we do.

Bubble Cheese

Ingredients:

Bread

Cheese

Mayo ( optional)

salt and pepper

Set Oven to Broil

Take a slice of bread, if you would like now is the time to apply the thin layer of mayo.

If you hate mayo, then skip this and proceed getting a slice of cheese. Kraft slices works awesome for this , but you can also thin slice cheese off the block. once you have your slice, lay it on top of the bread.

salt and pepper lightly.

Slide in the oven and watch! As the cheese heats up it rises into bubbles all over the bread, you may get one big bubble or several little ones. When you see the edges of the bread are browning up and the cheese is bubbled up well, pull it out of the oven. The bubbles will collapse down. However, this was all great fun to watch because smaller bubbles would remain raised. Let it cool just a bit, as the oven on broil is incredibly hot. Serve up with your favorite lunch side and a drink. It makes for a fun lunch.

 

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