Last weekend while we were in Charlotte, North Carolina, I hung out my cousin Tracey. I’ve always adored Tracey but now that we’re both moms we’re even closer. At one point Tracey mentioned that her 2-year-old son Ethan has become a pickier eater as he’s gotten older. Mason will eat just about anything right now but it’s entirely possible that he’ll follow in his big cousin’s footsteps. Many kids turn into picky eaters as toddlers and the boys could be brothers with their blonde hair, fair skin, and blue eyes. (Watching them play together made me yearn to follow in Berit’s footsteps and try for #2!) Tonight I came up with a super easy veggie side dish that I think both boys will love. It’s a medley of cooked veggies tossed in a homemade cheese sauce. I chopped up the veggies then stirred together the cheese sauce as they were cooking. So simple and you can also puree it if your babe isn’t eating chunky food yet. The entire dish came together in just 20 minutes. I’d love to hear what you think if you try it out. What are your go-to side dishes?
2 cups fresh or frozen broccoli, stems removed
1 cup fresh or frozen peas
Shredded cheddar cheese
Milk, formula, or breastmilk
1 tablespoon unsalted butter
1 tablespoon all-purpose flour
1. Wash veggies. Peel carrot and chop into tiny pieces. Chop broccoli into tiny pieces, removing stems.
2. Fill a medium saucepan with water. Bring to a boil then reduce heat until bubbles are soft. Cook carrots and broccoli for 10 minutes or until tender. Add peas to the water for the last 5 minutes.
3. As the veggies are cooking, prepare cheese sauce. Set aside to cool.
4. Drain veggies and rinse in cold water. Pat dry with a paper towel to remove excess water.
5. Combine veggies and cheese sauce in a medium-size bowl. Mix well until veggies and sauce are combined. To puree, dump it all in a blender or food processor and blend until smooth.
6. Divide veggies into 2 ounce portions and freeze leftovers for up to 3 months.
Yield: 8 two-ounce side dish portions