There’s not much my children won’t do for a french fry. I’ve tried to get them off of them completely, but if we go out to dinner with Daddy, he’s going to order something that comes with fried potatoes, and then no matter how happy the kids were with their selections when placing the order, when they see Daddy’s fries, it’s all over…it’s all they want, it’s all they’re going to eat…end of story. I decided that if I could make their vegetables look like french fries at home, I’d have a better chance of getting them to eat something with more nutritional value. There are two colors of sweet potatoes, the more familiar are the darker, orangey ones, but usually right next to those are another color, much lighter and closer to the color of the Russet. I suggest using those as well as a couple of parsnips, yeah I said it, parsnips and making your own oven fries. With a little bit of time and a sharp knife, you can really pull one over on your little ones. It’s kind of fun, especially when you consider they’ll be pulling things over on you for the next 20 years.
- 1-2 large sweet potatoes, cut into ¼” square fries
- 1-2 parsnips, cut into ¼’ square fries
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- Salt to taste
Preheat oven to 400 degrees. In a resealable bag, add the potatoes, parsnips and olive oil and toss until all vegetables are evenly coated with oil. Place vegetables on a large baking sheet and bake for 40 minutes, turning about halfway through cooking time to ensure even browning. Serve veggies with the protein of your choice, or your child’s choice.
Another great way to incorporate the sweet potato into your child’s diet is to sneak some pureed potatoes into their pancakes or waffles in the morning. Prepare your pancake mix according to directions, adding 1-2 tablespoons pureed sweet potato, ½ teaspoon vanilla, ¼ teaspoon cinnamon and a dash of nutmeg and you’ll be getting much of their nutrients packed into the most important meal of their day. If you are trying to cut down on sugar, substitute agave syrup for your regular pancake syrup. Its an all natural sweetener, readily available in most grocery stores now and the texture and sweetness is so similar to your Aunt Jemima, the kid’s won’t bat an eye at the change!