The children are most demanding when it comes to food.
Parents often wonder of the best ways of preparing food for proper growth and development of their children. The best ways, of course, are steaming, stewing, blanching, grilling and baking.
As for frying, this method of preparation should be avoided, at least for a while, because frying is the worst of these preparation methods, especially deep frying.
You should know that deep fried food is the worst combination because, in addition to being prepared in deep fat, coated with the flour, egg and breadcrumbs, they absorb big amounts of oil. What’s worse, it looks like most kids love this kind of food.
Here are some tips related to specific methods of food preparation and characteristics for each of them.
Steaming is a good method to cook foods that contain a lot of water like spinach, young cabbage, peas, carrots, etc. The time for steaming food is approximately the same as boiling the food in water, the only difference is the loss of healthy food nutrients. When the food is boiled the nutrients are left in the water when the food is steamed the nutrients are kept in the food. Steaming is recommended in children`s diet and in the hospital diet.
Stewing and Braising
Stewing and braising are food preparation often used to cook a combination of vegetables (such as potatoes, beans, tomatoes, carrots, peppers etc.) or meat, together they are especially suitable for slow-cooking. The ingredients are usually cooked in liquid, most often water, but wine and beer are also common. Whether the stewing is in the oven or on a stovetop the process is low and slow – a low heat setting over a long period of time. Stewed foods are very tasty, and the loss of nutrients is not significant.
Blanching is a food process used for cooking vegetables and fruits, but also preserving it. The food is boiled in water, removed after a brief, timed interval, and finally plunged into iced water or placed under cold running water to halt the cooking process.It stops enzyme actions which can cause loss of flavor, color and texture. Blanching may be used preserve color and texture, to prepare ingredients ahead of time, and to prepare vegetables for freezing.Blanching cleanses the surface of dirt and organisms, helps retain vitamins and minerals and also softens the vegetables and makes them easier to pack.
Baking and Roasting
Baking and roasting are a very common technique of food preparation that uses prolonged dry heat, normally in an oven. All types of food can be baked, such as meat, fish, vegetables, fruits and various types of dough, pasta etc. With baking, the percentage of fat or oil in the cooking process is reduced and for roasting an outer coating of fat is necessary. Baking is a process that destroys heat-sensitive vitamins including vitamin C and some B vitamins so it should be done at lower temperatures for a longer period.
Grilling and Broiling
Grilling or broiling is cooking that involves a significant amount of direct heat and tends to be used for cooking ingredients quickly. When the heat source for grilling comes from above, grilling is called broiling. Usually the most often grilled products are meat, fish and some vegetables. The inside part of grilled food is of a very good quality, juicy and tasty, while the crust itself is difficult to digest. Grilling is appreciated the way of preparing foods in the diet and often presented as a healthy cooking alternative.
If you did not already prepared food in any of this methods try to find some interesting and healthy recipe. Be creative and serve it in colorful and fun way so that your child would be curious to taste. Make their favorite food but replace some ingredients for healthier ones and they will be surely asking for more. Include them in food preparation make them discover new types of food maybe they will start enjoying different flavors. Remember parents are the ones to set the basic guidelines for children healthy life in order to grow and develop in a proper way. It’s the parent’s responsibility to provide a reliable family meal time with a balanced nutritional content and encourage your kids to eat right.