Lemony Pesto Potatoes

by Cate on August 7, 2008

A friend and I were talking about our kids’ eating habits the other day, and rattling off the list of things that they will or won’t eat.  We both concluded that while they may be a little pickier than we’d like, they still eat enough of the “good stuff” that we (and they!) are on the right track.    It would be one thing if the kids turned their nose up at ALL vegetables, but they don’t.  They have a nice, healthy handful of what they will readily eat, and that’s fine.  It’s all about balance.

I’m not a big fan of hiding vegetables in food or disguising them (a la Jessica Seinfeld).  While it may get the vegetables in an otherwise stubborn kid’s little belly, it’s not teaching them to actually like something new.  I’d rather find a handful of vegetables that my kids like, and concentrate on those, discovering new and delicious ways to make them, rather than being sneaky about it.

So in the side dish I served last night alongside the Unfried Chicken, spinach was there, front and center.  I didn’t mention the spinach, but it was quite visible alongside the potatoes and red onions.  And Nicholas ate it.  The same Nicholas that proclaims he doesn’t like spinach (unless it’s raw in a salad, at which point he thinks it’s just regular lettuce).  No sneaking around, no hiding or disguising … see? It can be done.

This recipe is no more complicated than boiling potatoes, and we all know how easy that is.  Once the potatoes are done, toss the rest of the ingredients into the bowl and call it a day. 

Lemony Pesto Potatoes
Recipe courtesy of Good Food magazine, March 2006

1 lb waxy potatoes, halved if large (I used Yukon Gold)
1 small red onion, halved and sliced
200g bag spinach leaves (I did a rough chop)
3 tablespoons olive oil (I doubled the potatoes, but kept oil at same amount)
2 tablespoons pesto
juice of 1 lemon

Boil the potatoes for about 15 minutes or until tender.  Drain, then return to the pan and roughly crush with a fork.

Tip in the onion and spinach leaves.  Pour over the olive oil, pesto and lemon juice, season to taste and toss to coat everything in the dressing.  Serve warm with sausages, chicken or steak.

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{ 5 comments… read them below or add one }

Claire August 7, 2008 at 11:17 pm

That looks pretty good! I’m not usually big on potatoes, but that sounds like a pretty good family friendly side. Glad Nicholas enjoyed it!

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Maria August 8, 2008 at 5:58 am

I’m with Nicholas. I’ve never been fond of cooked spinach. The spinach doesn’t look mushy in this one, so I’m going to give it a try.

P.S. I thought of you when I saw this http://gigglepotamus.wordpress.com/2008/08/06/for-the-calorie-conscious/

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Mrs Ergül August 8, 2008 at 9:14 am

This looks nice!

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Debbie August 8, 2008 at 11:06 am

Looks simple and delicious. I would love to try both the potatoes and unfried chicken. They go great together!

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Patsy August 8, 2008 at 12:43 pm

I agree, I hate trying to hide vegetables in other things to get my kids to eat them. They will try just about anything I put on their plates so, I think by not making too big of a deal out of it has worked in our favor.

those potatoes look delicious!

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