Today has not been an easy day, y’all. It’s been what many of you refer to as, “one of those” days. You know the type. Where one kid throws a heavy shoe at you while you’re driving (um, child, please, I don’t know where you learned that! and why is your shoe so heavy?), where your other child gives you the attitude of a teenager, and where you don’t know what on earth to make for dinner… and it’s dinner time.
Despite all of that, I actually put together a meal that everyone ate tonight. While there were no quiet moments where everyone was peacefully eating, at least they all ate. And my five year old said it was the best spaghetti he’d ever eaten and that he wanted it for lunch tomorrow and then again the next day. High praise from a picky eater.
I never thought I’d be the parent that hid vegetables in food that I serve my children. And for my youngest, I am that parent. But for my oldest, I have to be more inconspicuous. He’ll spot a “green thing” from a mile away. And, then, it’s tainted. Unedible. “Gross”.
So here’s my great recipe with lots of hidden vegetables for your eagle-eyed children to enjoy…
Homemade Vegetable Tomato Sauce
Serves: 4 people, with second helpings and leftovers
2 large bell peppers (I used one red and one green), cut into large pieces
1/4 large white onion, cut into large pieces
handful of cherry tomatoes (I used about 7)
1 6oz can of tomato paste
12oz tomato sauce (I use Flora Organic Strained Tomatoes)
S&P to taste
Ground meat (I used chicken. Turkey, beef, or sausage would be delicious.)
Pasta (I used 1lb of Trader Joe’s brown rice GF spaghetti noodles)
In a food processor, whiz together the bell peppers, onion, and cherry tomatoes. Meanwhile, brown your meat in a frying pan. Once cooked all the way through (and drained, if needed), add your liquified vegetable mixture. Pour in the tomato sauce and tomato paste. You might need to whisk it a bit to make sure the paste breaks down. Add the garlic and S&P. Let it simmer while your noodles are cooking. Once your noodles are done, drain and return to pot. Add the meat and tomato sauce.