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Thursday, July 9, 2015

Fitness Friday-Cooking with your kids

One of the quotes that is constantly in the back of my mind is "You can't out train a bad diet". In other words, you can work out 3 hours a day but if you still choose to eat junk you probably won't see a big change...and you probably won't perform your best when you exercise. I also have heard several certified trainers say that losing weight and building muscle can be attributed to 80% diet and 20% exercise, once again showing just how important a healthy diet is. 

For those reasons I am constantly introducing our kiddos to better food options like carrot fries instead of french fries. We also encourage them to drink water, milk and flavored water...hardly ever serving them juice or soda unless thats the only option. 

I also don't have a thorough history of my kids birthmothers health history. Meaning I have no clue what health problems run in their family tree...therefore we are prepping them to lead a healthy lifestyle no matter what. 

One way to get your kids involved is to take them with you to workout. My kids normally go with me 1/2 times a week to workout, depending on our schedule. Sometimes they lead it, which ends up being our favorite workouts, full of "birdie flies, kangaroo hops, running, skipping, burpees (that name is just so funny), sumo squats, sprints, bear crawls, crab crawls and anything else we can think of that is animal related. 

Another way is to get them involved in the kitchen. My kids love the show Master Chef Jr on Netflix. They could watch the pie challenge over and over again...and each time they laugh just as hard when the judges get a pie in their face. After watching it we decided to make homemade pasta and homemade frozen yogurt. 
Here are the kiddos judging my dinner one night. They graded me on presentation, taste and how healthy it was. They must have whispered back and forth for 5 minutes. They kept saying "be nice to mommy", "its not as good as Chick Fil A", "well she did put ketchup on ours!". They are not very good at whispering :). 
This was the meal they were critiquing. Ahi Tuna steaks with capers and cauliflower rice with chunky tomatoes. They only had a small helping of tuna and I did make them some roasted potato fries as well. I think in the end I got an over all "Great" from the harsh judges...they wish they could have dino nuggets instead :). 

We chose to make Homemade Ravioli with chicken and cheese filling and Strawberry Balsamic Mint frozen yogurt for our dinner. 

Big Man cut up all of our strawberries for the frozen yogurt. 

Big girl added all of the other ingredients into our food processor...whole milk yogurt, fresh mint from our garden, lemon, pomegranate balsamic vinaigrette and vanilla. 

Now the fun part of mixing up our pasta dough. I opted not to go buy any fancy tools but just let them use their hands and utensils we already had. They LOVE to wear their aprons!!!

Flattening our our ravioli, we had a method. Flour, push, stretch, flip. Repeat.
We made our dough using whole wheat flour, eggs and water. 


We then cut our dough, filled it with cheese and chicken and tzatiki sauce. Then we use water to make the edges sticky as we folded another piece of dough on top and used a fork to seal it.

Each kid made 2 filled raviolis and then several spaghetti noodles. They watched them boil and then we added in sauce, mushrooms, shrimp and spinach and topped it with parmesan cheese.

I will be the first to admit that the pasta did not look appetizing. It was thick and just plain ugly. BUT, they LOVED it and they were so proud of their work. They ate almost everything and what they didn't eat Adam did!!! I taste a spaghetti and it didn't taste awful. 
Baby Boy's Ravioli was about as big as him!!!


All the while our frozen yogurt was churning away in the ice cream maker. We went for a walk after dinner to let it finish. Unfortunately on that walk, Baby Boy through a tantrum and went to bed without dessert. The other two gobbled up theirs though..it was only 100 calories per 1/2 cup and they decided to add some chocolate syrup on top to make it taste like chocolate covered strawberries!!!

What cooking with kids successes have you had? Any failures? I will say with every bone in my body that cooking with kids is cleaner and easier than doing art projects...and that is coming from an ART TEACHER!!!..it may have something to do with the fact that we can't eat our art projects!!

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