52 New Foods: Our Journey to Happy, Healthy Eating

Posted by Jennifer Tyler Lee on February 10, 2013 0 Comments


52 weeks, 52 new foods. How our family discovered the secret to happy, healthy eating.


It all boils down to pasta and peas. That’s why I started this journey. Determined to find a better way, I was on a mission to end mealtime battles over broccoli. I resolved to make the family table a place that we all wanted to be. I did it by making it fun and focusing on one simple goal: 52 weeks, 52 new foods.

It’s been a year of ups and downs. One of the highlights was when my daughter created her very own recipe for Michelle Obama’s Healthy Lunch Challenge, Friendship Garden Soup. There were lows, too, like when she chose Cheetos for her lunch during an interview about how to get kids to eat healthy. But when you put all of the good with the bad, the tough days with the terrific days, it was worth every minute.

During a frantic visit to the grocery store, in the days leading up to Christmas, it all came together for me. Standing with my son in the frozen food section, feeling dizzy about how I was going to host 12 guests for three non-stop days of holiday meals, I suggested we pick up a few prepared foods to have “as backup.” I reached into the freezer and his sweet little hand grabbed my arm. I paused. With a look of complete bewilderment he stated with a kindergartener’s conviction, “But Mommy, we don’t eat anything from a box!”   

I’m honored to have shared our story with The Huffington Post, Jamie Oliver, Edible Silicon Valley and Canada AM. Thank you to the hundreds of thousands of families who have cheered us on and joined our journey to healthy eating. The support I’ve found through this community is one of the many wonderful (and unexpected) gifts I discovered this year. 

If you’re just tuning into 52 New Foods, welcome to the table! I’m so glad that you’re here. Together with your family, check out our best healthy recipes list to get inspired and then join us each week as we sample and savor foods from around the world. Share your ideas, recipes and questions with us on Facebook, Twitter, Google+, or simply on this blog. I hope 52 New Foods will help you plant the seeds of change at your family table like it did for me.

About the author: Jennifer Tyler Lee is a mom of two children and the creator of Crunch a Color® -- award-winning nutrition games that make healthy eating fun. Like most parents, she struggled to get her kids to eat healthy, balanced meals, so she decided to make it into a healthy eating game and she’s giving back to support non-profit kids’ nutrition programs. Winner of the Dr. Toy and Parent Tested, Parent Approved awards, Crunch a Color® has been featured by Jamie Oliver’s Food Revolution, Rachael Ray's Yum-O!, Laurie David’s Family Dinner, Kiwi Magazine, Dr. Greene, and Yum Food & Fun For Kids, among many others, as a simple, fun and playful way to get kids to eat healthy and try new foods. Jennifer’s passion is making mealtime fun and healthy for busy families. Her easy recipes, quick tips, and new food adventures are regularly featured at Pottery Barn Kids, Jamie Oliver’s Food Revolution, The Huffington Post, and on her weekly recipe blog at crunchacolor.com.

Read More

A Healthy, Easy Crepe Recipe (52 New Foods, Around the World Week 5)

Posted by Jennifer Tyler Lee on February 06, 2013 0 Comments
healthy easy crepe recipe


A little taste of Paris, this easy crepe recipe is a warm and wholesome treat. Healthy and delicious!


Hand in hand we’ll saunter past the Eiffel Tower, savor a leisurely lunch at a bustling bistro, then head to the market to uncover what’s fresh and get inspired to enjoy cooking together. I’ve got two tickets to Paris. Will you come with me? 52 New Foods is heading to France!

One of my fondest memories of living in Paris is of strolling the beautiful promenades. On those wonderful walks, I remember feeling transported like I was in a dream – surrounded by portrait-worthy gardens, inspiring architecture, and filled with the sights and sounds of a foreign but somehow familiar place.

No walk was complete without a stop at one of the many fresh crepe stands. By a long stretch, the food in France left the greatest impression on my memory. Longing for a taste of Paris, I decided to remake one of my favorite French treats for my kids to enjoy.

Come on! Let’s run away to Paris…     

A Healthy, Easy Crepe Recipe

Prep time: 5 minutes
Cook time: 15 minutes
Yield: Makes 4 servings, about 16 crepes
Crunch a Color points: 10 healthy grains, 5 red

Ingredients:

easy crepe recipe ingredients


1 cup whole wheat flour
1 ¾ cup milk
3 eggs
3 Tbsp butter, melted plus 1 Tbsp extra for the pan
¼ tsp coarse salt

Directions:

1. In a large bowl, whisk together the milk, eggs, and melted butter.

easy crepe recipe step 1


2. Add the flour and salt to the egg mixture, stirring gently.

easy crepe recipe step 2


3. Warm an 8-inch pan over medium heat. Lightly coat with butter, or spray with oil. Add ¼ cup of batter to the pan, swirling quickly to evenly coat the pan with a thin layer of batter.

Quick Tip: This is the trickiest and most important part of the recipe. If you let the batter set before spreading, the crepes will be thick.

easy crepe recipe step 3


4. Cook until the underside of the crepe is golden brown. About 2 to 3 minutes. Then flip with a spatula and cook the remaining side 2 minutes more.

easy crepe recipe step 4


5. Serve warm with fresh fruit and a dollop of Greek yogurt.

healthy easy crepe recipe


We found a delicious basket of fresh, local strawberries at the market to enjoy with our crepes. We blended ½ a pint of the strawberries with a little bit of water to create a simple strawberry sauce. We dressed our crepes with the sauce, fresh strawberries and a spoonful of non-fat Greek yogurt.

fresh local strawberries


This recipe would be equally delicious with cinnamon apples. Experiment with what’s in season and let us know what works for you!

 

* Do you love crepes too? What is your favorite easy crepe recipe?

Craving more easy recipes to try? Catch up on last week’s recipe: A Simple Bok Choy Recipe

About the author: Jennifer Tyler Lee is a mom of two children and the creator of Crunch a Color® -- award-winning nutrition games that make healthy eating fun. Like most parents, she struggled to get her kids to eat healthy, balanced meals, so she decided to make it into a healthy eating game and she’s giving back to support non-profit kids’ nutrition programs. Winner of the Dr. Toy and Parent Tested, Parent Approved awards, Crunch a Color® has been featured by Jamie Oliver’s Food Revolution, Rachael Ray's Yum-O!, Laurie David’s Family Dinner, Kiwi Magazine, Dr. Greene, and Yum Food & Fun For Kids, among many others, as a simple, fun and playful way to get kids to eat healthy and try new foods. Jennifer’s passion is making mealtime fun and healthy for busy families. Her easy recipes, quick tips, and new food adventures are regularly featured at Pottery Barn Kids, Jamie Oliver’s Food Revolution, The Huffington Post, and on her weekly recipe blog at crunchacolor.com.

Read More

A Simple Bok Choy Recipe (52 New Foods, Around the World Week 4)

Posted by Jennifer Tyler Lee on January 26, 2013 4 Comments
bok choy recipe


Our simple, sizzling bok choy recipe with a hint of garlic and ginger makes a super side for a healthy supper.


Bok choy is one of my favorite Asian greens, but it took some time for my kids to warm up to this simple vegetable. Was it because they felt that it was their responsibility to be wary of anything leafy-green? Regardless, I was determined to turn the tables.

Last year I started to feature bok choy in clay pot rice – sweet and salty flavors mingling together with a few crispy bites of green was a taste my kids loved. But my goal this week was to get them to enjoy this friendly Asian cabbage in the same way that they love a side of broccoli – simple and green. The trick was lightly stir-frying the bok choy in freshly minced ginger and garlic, and adding a little touch of salty flavor with Braggs Liquid Amino Acids – it’s made with unfermented non-GMO soy beans and has a flavor similar to soy sauce. You can find it in most organic markets and health food stores.

As I started to write this post, I searched for more information about soy, and Braggs in particular, to uncover any new health concerns. I first turned to Marion Nestle for the scoop on soy in general, then reviewed an interview with Michael Pollan on NPR (way back in 2008) where the topic of using Braggs came up. In the end, I’d recommend making this simple bok choy recipe with non-GMO Tamari (like San-J Tamari) if you want a little salty flavor, but you can also just simmer up the bok choy with garlic and ginger and leave it at that. It’s up to you to decide.

A Simple Bok Choy Recipe

Prep time: 5 minutes
Cook time: 7 to 9 minutes
Yield: Makes 4 servings
Crunch a Color points: 10 green

Ingredients:

bok choy recipe ingredients


4 bunches of bok choy
3 slices of fresh ginger, minced
3 cloves of fresh garlic, minced
1 tsp non-GMO Tamari sauce
2 Tbsp grapeseed oil
Sesame seeds for garnish

Directions:

1. Mince the ginger, then the garlic. My kids love using their big muscles to put the ginger and garlic through the press! Set aside.

bok choy recipe step 1


2. Chop off the ends of the bok choy and discard. Then chop the remaining leaves into 1-inch sections.

bok choy recipe step 2

bok choy recipe step 2b


My budding artist was fascinated with the pattern made by the chopped ends of the bok choy. Beautiful!

bok choy recipe step 2c


3. Give the bok choy a bath in a bowl of cool water. Swish the greens around gently, letting the dirt sink to the bottom of the bowl.

bok choy recipe step 3


4. Scoop out the bok choy from the bowl and into a sieve. The dirt will be left at the bottom of the bowl. Give the bok choy another quick rinse with water.

bok choy recipe step 4


5. Heat a wok over medium heat. Once the wok is hot, add the grapeseed oil, ginger and garlic. Simmer gently for about 2 minutes. Then add the bok choy and stir-fry for another 5 to 7 minutes, or until the leaves are bright green with slightly brown edges. At the very end, add the Tamari and toss gently in the pan to coat evenly.

bok choy recipe step 5


6. Garnish with a few sesame seeds. Serve immediately.

bok choy recipe


* What is your favorite way to enjoy bok choy? Post your pictures and recipe ideas on our Facebook page.

Craving more easy recipes to try? Catch up on last week’s recipe: Easy Orange Granita.

About the author: Jennifer Tyler Lee is a mom of two children and the creator of Crunch a Color® -- the award-winning nutrition games that make healthy eating fun. Like most parents, she struggled to get her kids to eat healthy, balanced meals, so she decided to make it into a healthy eating game and she’s giving back to support non-profit kids’ nutrition programs. Winner of the Dr. Toy and Parent Tested, Parent Approved awards, Crunch a Color® has been featured by Jamie Oliver’s Food Revolution, Rachael Ray's Yum-O, Laurie David’s Family Dinner, Kiwi Magazine, Dr. Greene, and Yum Food & Fun For Kids, among many others, as a simple, fun and playful way to get kids to eat healthy and try new foods. Jennifer’s passion is making mealtime fun, easy and healthy for busy families. Her easy recipes, quick tips, and new food adventures are regularly featured at Pottery Barn Kids, Jamie Oliver’s Food Revolution, The Huffington Post, and on her weekly recipe blog at crunchacolor.com.

Read More

Easy Orange Granita Recipe (52 New Foods, Around the World Week 3)

Posted by Jennifer Tyler Lee on January 18, 2013 2 Comments
easy orange granita recipe


This easy orange granita recipe was a deliciously fun project for my kids and me! A simple twist on a favorite fruit: Satsuma Mandarin Oranges.


Like sparklers against a dark night sky, mandarin oranges at the local market add bright and cheerful pops of color to dreary winter days and herald the coming of Chinese New Year! Nature’s perfect “fast food”, mandarin oranges are regularly featured as lunch box treats, after school snacks and even dessert at this time of year for my family.

As we venture forward into another year of trying new foods, we wanted to prepare this favorite food in a new way. With a little inspiration from our blended family, a combination of Chinese and Italian roots, we decided to make a classic Italian dish with our simple Asian ingredient: Mandarin Orange Granita.

Easy Orange Granita Recipe

Prep time: 5 minutes
Cook time: 90 to 120 minutes
Yield: Makes 4 servings
Crunch a Color points: 5 orange

Ingredients:

orange granita recipe ingredients


8 Satsuma mandarin oranges

Note: you’ll also need an ice cube tray and a simple citrus press.

If you’re like us, you don’t have time to scrape, then freeze, scrape, then freeze, to create a granita. Instead, we made our orange granita the easy way, with our food processor. We tried the recipe two ways: one with Clementine and the other with Satsuma mandarin oranges. The Satsuma’s were far superior, both in color and taste, so we’d highly recommend hunting them down at your market for this granita recipe. It will be well worth your effort! 

Directions:

1. Slice the Satsuma mandarin oranges in half (cutting through the middle of the orange as opposed to top to bottom). Using a simple citrus press, squeeze the juice out of the oranges.

orange granita recipe step 1

orange granita recipe step 1b


2. Pour the juice into an ice cube tray and place in the freezer. It can take up to two hours for the juice to freeze completely.

orange granita recipe step 2


3. Once frozen, remove the juice cubes from the tray and load into a food processor.

orange granita recipe step 3

orange granita recipe step 4


4. Pulse until the frozen juice looks like slush.

orange granita recipe step 5


5. Enjoy!

easy orange granita recipe


* What is your favorite granita recipe? Post your pictures and ideas on our Facebook page.

Craving more easy recipes to try? Catch up on last week’s recipe: Sesame Green Bean Salad.

About the author: Jennifer Tyler Lee is a mom of two children and the creator of Crunch a Color® -- the award-winning nutrition games that make healthy eating fun. Like most parents, she struggled to get her kids to eat healthy, balanced meals, so she decided to make it into a healthy eating game and she’s giving back to support non-profit kids’ nutrition programs. Winner of the Dr. Toy and Parent Tested, Parent Approved awards, Crunch a Color® has been featured by Jamie Oliver’s Food Revolution, Laurie David’s Family Dinner, Kiwi Magazine, Dr. Greene, and Yum Food & Fun For Kids, among many others, as a simple, fun and playful way to get kids to eat healthy and try new foods. Jennifer’s passion is making mealtime fun, easy and healthy for busy families. Her easy recipes, quick tips, and new food adventures are regularly featured at Pottery Barn Kids, Jamie Oliver’s Food Revolution, The Huffington Post, and on her weekly recipe blog at crunchacolor.com.

Read More

Sesame Green Bean Salad (52 New Foods, Around the World Week 2)

Posted by Jennifer Tyler Lee on January 09, 2013 0 Comments
sesame green bean salad


A simple sesame green bean salad adds a new twist to an old favorite and makes supper super fun!


Sesame seeds make your family-favorite dishes more fun and nutritious. My kids like to sprinkle them on vegetables, chicken and brown rice. Their subtle, nutty flavor is easy to enjoy and added an Asian twist to one of our weeknight regulars: green bean salad.

Sesame Green Been Salad

Prep time: 5 minutes
Cook time: 10 minutes
Yield: Makes 4 servings
Crunch a Color points: 10 green

Ingredients:

sesame green bean salad


1 pound green beans, trimmed and washed
2 tsp rice vinegar
½ tsp sesame seed oil
1 tsp sesame seeds

Directions:

1. Steam the green beans in a basket over boiling water for about 10 minutes, until crisp-tender. Steam a little less if you prefer your green beans on the crunchy side. Steaming your vegetables is one of the best ways to help retain their nutrients.

sesame green bean salad step 1


2. Give the beans a bath in ice water, to bring back their color.

sesame green bean salad step 2


3. Toss gently with the rice vinegar, sesame oil and sesame seeds.

sesame green bean salad step 3


4. Enjoy!

sesame green bean salad


* Have you tried sesame green bean salad? What new food is on your list this week?

Craving more easy recipes to try? Catch up on last week’s recipe: Pear sauce.

About the author: Jennifer Tyler Lee is a mom of two children and the creator of Crunch a Color® -- the award-winning nutrition games that make healthy eating fun. Like most parents, she struggled to get her kids to eat healthy, balanced meals, so she decided to make it into a healthy eating game and she’s giving back to support non-profit kids’ nutrition programs. Winner of the Dr. Toy and Parent Tested, Parent Approved awards, Crunch a Color® has been featured by Jamie Oliver’s Food Revolution, Laurie David’s Family Dinner, Kiwi Magazine, Dr. Greene, and Yum Food & Fun For Kids, among many others, as a simple, fun and playful way to get kids to eat healthy and try new foods. Jennifer’s passion is making mealtime fun, easy and healthy for busy families. Her easy recipes, quick tips, and new food adventures are regularly featured at Pottery Barn Kids, Jamie Oliver’s Food Revolution, The Huffington Post, and on her weekly recipe blog at crunchacolor.com.

Read More


« Previous 1 3 4 5 6 7 16 Next »