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Cooking with kids: Tortilla soup, kale chips, and chocolate pudding

Jan 30th, 2015 | Category: Cooking

Fun recipes are essential to cooking with kids. Make them smile, get them interested, and they will be more likely to want to try cooking, and try new foods. Maybe it’s cabin fever, but tortilla soup with a side of kale chips, and homemade chocolate pudding for dessert, sound delicious this month.

I like this tortilla soup recipe because it is a blander base of ingredients that you can add to as needed per child. Ladle it into a bowl and let the kids do the toppings – they’ll love adding tortilla chips and cheese. Have the spices and some chiles and peppers on the side for any family members that need a kick. The kale chips are great for a vegetable serving, but when the kids are done crunching on the tortillas they can also add in those crunchy – and healthy – kale chips. Save any leftover chips for a snack or to put in school lunches.

The chocolate pudding is easy to do and very tasty; your kids will ask for it again and again. If your pudding does not thicken properly or cool quick enough, don’t fret, just listen to the kids. “Let’s put it in the freezer Mama!” That sort of runny pudding turns into a delicious sort of frozen treat!


Tortilla Soup



2 tablespoons vegetable oil

1 small onion, diced

2 tablespoons minced garlic

6 cups chicken or vegetable broth

1 can diced tomatoes

1 can black beans

3 chicken breasts (optional)

Salt and freshly ground black pepper

1 cup chopped cilantro

1 cup shredded cheese

tortilla chips



Heat the vegetable oil in a large saucepan. Add the onions and cook until softened. Add the garlic, then add the broth, tomatoes and beans and bring to a boil. Reduce the heat to simmer and add your chicken breasts (cut into bite-sized pieces). Cook for 25-30 minutes. Remove the chicken with a slotted spoon and set aside until cooled; then shred it. Add the shredded chicken and any additional spices at this time to your liking. Spoon soup into a bowl and top with a little cilantro, tortillas, and cheese.  Serve.


Chocolate pudding



1 cup sugar

1/2 cup baking cocoa

1/4 cup cornstarch

1/2 teaspoon salt

3 1/2 cups milk

2 teaspoons vanilla extract

2 tablespoons butter



In a heavy saucepan, combine sugar, cocoa, cornstarch and salt. Add the milk, and bring to a boil over medium heat. Once boiling stir for two minutes, then remove from heat. Stir in vanilla and butter. Spoon into serving dishes and chill for one hour. Makes about 6-8 smaller servings.


Parmesan kale chips



5-8 kale leaves

1 teaspoon olive oil

Sprinkle of sea salt

1/4 cup shredded Parmesan cheese



Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Wash, strip the leaves from stem, and cut into bite-sized pieces. Using a paper towel to dry them, remove moisture from the pieces. Coat a baking sheet with a teaspoon of oil and lightly mix onto the chips. Place the chips on the sheet, sprinkle with salt, and bake for 10 minutes. Remove, and sprinkle 1/4 cup (or less) Parmesan cheese. Bake 2-3 minutes more, until crisp. Eat.


Published in the February 2015 issue of Grow Northwest

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