Jamaican Mommies by Shanoy Coombs: From Jamaica; for the world
It’s summer!! and in the midst of the scorching sun, the saving grace of the sea and the serenity of being on sand, many mums who have not gone the summer school route have a bit more time on hand to spend with our often too picky, too complain-ey and too melodramatic children. As with all things parenting where we have to pull on the creative caps (such as outdoor fun), meal preparations this summer demands that it not only LOOKS like fun but tastes great too.
This realization hit as I was about to prepare yet another Peanut Butter sandwich, another boiled egg, another macaroni and cheese salad, another pink, white or brown bowl of porridge and another same old slices of cucumber as someone has suddenly developed very specific, very non-meat eating dietary patterns, so it got me web searching for fun foods for kids.
As a DIY Mama, I was thrilled with what I saw and was even more thrilled that many of the recipes allowed for use of local produce. With way too many options, I am choosing some basics that require ingredients moms in Jamaica and the diaspora are likely to have:
1. I literally let out a little squeal about the cuteness that this lady bug sandwich with lunch meat, cheddar, and lettuce and without a method it looks like a round cutter or food punch was used for the holes; a blob of cream cheese or mayo, a little food colour/bits of raisin for the eyes) so it seems like a super easy DIY treat.
|Image via Susanyuen’s blog|
|Image via colourfully.eu|
3. We know our kiddies don’t always love their fruits and veggies, so the creative cat approach will certainly be appreciated. I loved this fruitilicious tree for several reasons: 1. It is so representative of Jamaica’s many coconut trees 2. It’s super easy to make 3. With our emphasis on buying local and supporting our farmers, the Green Kiwi leaves can easily be replaced with Mango slices (with the green skin still on) or even Juneplum slices 4. The other fruits used are always so accessible and even if we are short on tangerines, orange slices can be a tasty substitute.
|Image via ShaneshirleySmith|
|Image via kitchen fun with my sons blog|
|Image via The art of Nutrition|
Our mum by the Art of Nutrition shared these very easy steps:
Recipe: A boiled egg per person; Wholemeal spaghetti (love the healthy twist); Sauce (I made a simple, hearty tomato and fresh herb); Veggies (I served with peas, broccoli, corn and baby spinach)
Method: Cook pasta and add sauce; wrap Spaghetti around, make a hole for the eggs to perch in and Place veggies around the side for foliage (N.B. Get creative with any veggies on hand)
Jmommies tip: You can also give ‘same old’ macaroni or spaghetti a new appeal by adding safe food colour and making a rainbow pasta meal.
6. Watermelon/ other fruit Popsicles Win!!! Do I need to even say why?! Pop on outside of your home for a bit, feel that heat then you will agree. Besides what a great way to replace the many requests for lollipops with these cool, healthy popsicle look-a-like treat. It’s super easy too: Grab a food cutter and some fruits, cut assorted shapes, Place on the sticks and freeze & imagine with me just how welcomed they will be in this heat.
|Image via My Kid Craft|
|Image Via Flickr|
|Image via Parenting.com|
8. And we couldn’t leave you hanging without fab summer drink options, so meet the “Call in the cool kids” refresher!
|Image via Fast drink recipes|
Here’s a fun drink idea for the kids… adults feel free to add vodka for a fun Magic Potion color changing cocktail! All you have to do is freeze ice cubes with different colored/flavored Kool-Aid, then add them to a glass of Sprite or sparkling water. Serve these to the kiddos who will love watching the color of their drink change as the ice cubes melt!
|Image via Easybaked.net|
10. Now we had to round off with another healthy treat- Summer Smoothies!!
|Image via Raw Food Mum|