All Posts In Family

One Recipe, Two Meals: Chicken Burritos

by in Family, Recipes, January 8th, 2016

One Recipe, Two Meals: Chicken BurritosI always get super giddy when it’s burrito night. I think about it during the day. I fantasize and strategize when to start prepping. It’s not that burritos take long to put together! I’m just a weirdo and think about my next meal approximately 26 months before I eat it.

But these, these chicken burritos are SO easy to pull together. A. Hello, we’re using a rotisserie chicken. Shred, shred, shred; done. B. The kid version is crazy-simple, with black beans and a kiss of salsa, and takes, like, four seconds to make. C. The adult version is BAMMIN’ with fresh flavors and spice. No idea why I said “bammin'” just now.

You just need to make these. What takes them over the top is a little jaunt under the broiler. Oh my. You guys, the cheese will brown and bubble. Your face will sing praises. Your legs will involuntarily do a little jig.

In other words, it’s winter and you really need these in your life.

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How to Celebrate New Year’s Eve at Home with Your Kids

by in Family, Holidays, Recipes, December 28th, 2015

Lamb Sausage in Puff PastryWhen you’re little, celebrating New Year’s Eve is really just a fun reason to have special food, and this menu doesn’t disappoint! Offering a buffet of simple but festive fare is the way we love to ring in the new year with our own brood of four.

The Setup:
Create a kids’ table with party hats and noisemakers at each place. It doesn’t have to be elaborate; just throw a sheet over the craft table and get them set up. Then offer a buffet, lined with all the food. Set it out all at once, or in a couple of shifts. The second way, kids have a better chance of seeing everything.

The Menu:
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Holiday Party Recipes That Will Please Even the Kid Guests

by in Family, Holidays, Recipes, December 18th, 2015

Antipasti de SalumiWhether it’s an open house, a dinner party or a family celebration, these are the top holiday recipes kids just can’t resist. From starters to mains and a dessert, too, this will be a bash the little guys will love.

Giada De Laurentiis’ Antipasti Platter
Use cookie cutters to create adorable cheese shapes to serve along with crackers, salami, olives and any other nibbles your kids enjoy.

Ina Garten’s Roasted Tomato Basil Soup
I love serving soup at an open house. It’s easy to keep warm and doesn’t mind sitting on the stove for hours at a time. And this tomato soup from the Barefoot Contessa is amazing. Roasting the tomatoes ahead of time punches up the flavor, an important step when it’s not tomato season.

Roasted Squash Stuffed with Sausage & Apples
Individual portions can be so popular with kids — especially when they look a little like flowers. This dish is practically a meal in itself, great for a day that includes lots of pre-dinner snacks and plenty of desserts.

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10 Christmas Cookies So Easy Kids Can Help Make Them

by in Family, Holidays, Recipes, December 12th, 2015

Cocoa ThumbprintsI have four kids under the age of 7, so you can bet there are some Christmas cookies baking in my house — and the rascals want in on it. These are our favorite cookies for baking as a two-generation team.

Cocoa Thumbprints from Food Network Magazine
Anything that involves rolling dough into a ball, jamming your finger into it and placing candy on top is a hit with kiddie cooks.

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One Recipe, Two Meals: Crispy Baked Chicken

by in Family, Recipes, December 8th, 2015

One Recipe, Two Meals: Crispy Baked ChickenLately I’ve been getting more into breading things. Some to fry, some to bake, some to just bread and say, “I breaded this.” It feels good for my life.

But let’s get real for a second. I think it’s obvious we can all agree that the best food to bread is a good ol’ chicken nugget. How can it not be? It’s a childhood favorite, and it’s grabbable, poppable and dippable. You can’t not. But while the classic nugget will never go out of style, I wanted to upgrade our adult portions to have the same taste, but with a slightly more polished end result.

So I created a super-yummy, super-crunchy baked chicken nugget for the kids, and I used the same crunchy coating and applied it to a more adult-friendly paillard-style chicken dish! Even though technically a paillard has no coating, mine does. I like to get loco like that.

Since the coating is the exact same for all the chicken, it’s a definite timesaver on a weeknight. Holla. You’ll serve the nuggets with some ketchup and steamed broccoli for the kids. And then you’ll just drape your paillards over some super-quick lemony linguine for you. And all is right in the world.

Let’s do this already.

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9 Best Children’s Books About Food

by in Books, Family, Holidays, December 7th, 2015

Bread and Jam for Frances
When I was a kid, I had a poster on my wall that read, “A book is a present you can open again and again.” And it’s true — books make a perfect holiday gift for kids of all ages.

Some of my favorite books for children are about food. Surely you’ve read The Very Hungry Caterpillar and Green Eggs and Ham, but have you heard of any of these other delicious stories?

Bread and Jam for Frances by Russell Hoban
In this classic book, Frances wants to only eat her favorite foods — bread and jam — at every meal, turning up her nose at all the delicious things her family enjoys. Mrs. Badger ultimately gives her what she wants, but Frances soon realizes an important lesson about the importance of variety.

Image courtesy of HarperCollins

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How to Get Your Kids Eating Green Foods … Happily

by in Family, Recipes, December 1st, 2015

Spinach Tortellini SoupDid you know that experts suggest eating five servings of fruit and vegetables a day? If your kids get suspicious the second they see something green hit the plate, try these techniques I use with my own four kids. We eat a lot of vegetables around here, and this is how we do it.

1. Start with low-stakes recipes. There’s nothing worse than slaving over a big dinner only to find that exactly no one likes it. If your crew is new to healthy green food, try quick and simple dishes like these to start.

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What to Eat the Night Before Thanksgiving

by in Entertaining, Family, November 24th, 2015

The day before Thanksgiving means travel, traffic — and, for many families, takeout. Cooking another meal the night before the impending feast isn’t high on many of our priority lists, which explains why the Wednesday before Thanksgiving is one of the biggest pizza nights of the year across the country.

This year, skip the national delivery chains and wow out-of-town guests with a pie from the best pizza joint in your neck of the woods. Some of them even deliver. Here are some of our personal favorites from coast to coast. Plus, check out Food Network Magazine’s 50 States, 50 Pizzas for worthy pies from every state. Read more

Beyond the Kids’ Table: How to Involve Kids in Thanksgiving Prep

by in Family, Holidays, November 16th, 2015

Cooking with KidsWe get it, Thanksgiving Day is a busy one — especially if you’re hosting the meal. You have too much to do and not nearly enough help. It’s tempting to just hand over the iPad or park your kids in front of an all-day loop of Frozen to give you the freedom to prep in peace. But Thanksgiving is a family holiday, after all, and there are so many meaningful ways kids can get involved in the meal. Read more

15-Minute Pasta Dinners the Whole Family Will Love

by in Family, Recipes, November 6th, 2015

Garlic Oil-Sauteed Pasta with BroccoliWe have four small kids, and if there’s one thing I love about serving pasta dinners, it’s how popular they are. Who doesn’t like pasta? Less fussing, more enjoying. That’s a dinnertime ratio I can get behind. But if there are two things to love about pasta dinners, the other is this: Pasta cooks in a flash. Each of these dinners will hit the table in 15 minutes, and every one of them is kid-tested, totally approved.

1. Pasta with Garlic and Broccoli (pictured above): Melissa d’Arabian’s super-fast pasta has a secret step at the end: Deglaze the pan with red wine vinegar. Nothing like scraping up all those tasty bits with a whole lot of zing!

2. One-Pot Lemon Orzo with Cod: Orzo is the quickest-cooking pasta, because it’s so small. But that’s not what makes this dish so fast (or delicious). This is: Add the fish and the peas to the same cooking water and everything will be ready at the same time. Drizzle on a bit of olive oil and freshly squeezed lemon, and dinner is served.

3. Chicken Mozzarella Pasta: With a jar of your favorite store-bought sauce plus fresh mozzarella, Parmesan and basil, it’s hard to beat the flavor — or the ease — of this 5-star recipe from Ree Drummond.

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