This tomato salad was not my lunch. I simply wasn’t that hungry. This was lunch for the boys. And they both ate it without complaint. 😲 Getting your kids to eat their veggies seems to be one of the worst parts of parenting. We know it’s going to be a fight. We know what we prepare might go wasted and we know that in ten minutes our kids are going to be hungry again. So why bother? We give up a little bit and serve vegetables at fewer meals or we sneak them into things that will never be as healthy as just learning to eat vegetables. I.e. zucchini chocolate cake anyone!?
We used to just bully through and pull out all the regular parenting go to’s with vegetables. If you don’t eat your veggies you won’t get dessert. But then I would have to have the veggie fight AND make dessert. Eat your veggies or you’ll be grounded. You cant leave the table until… We all know it goes on.
Year’s ago, I was sick of the fight. We were watching Megamind and you know the part where he asks what’s the difference between a villain and a super villain? And then shouts Presentation! While walking down a stairway of robots in the sky with looming clouds and music. Yeah. Life changing.
I realized that sneaking veggies into cake was not the answer but maybe making them look bomb-ass was. So I began serving crudéta plates with dinner. Not just veggie trays but like the best-looking vegetable trays. Instead of serving the tired old vegetables we had fresh green beans and carrots in all kinds of colors, red and purple and stripped. We had Tiny little fingerling cucumbers and I found and grew cherry tomatoes that we’re the size of small peas and super sweet. The point was making the vegetables as interesting and appetizing to the boys as possible without serving a gallon of dip or coating them in sugar.
It’s kind of crazy what happens when you work with how your kids are made instead of fighting against it. My kids have the biggest imaginations so when I found seeds for Dragons Tongue green beans that were pale yellow with purple and maroon stripes I planted them. And unashamedly told the boys they might be magical….. They would sneak into the garden and eat them. Just to see if something happened. I’m not sorry.
So while this salad is definitely not what I would start with while training a small child, it is interesting, tasty and different. And even though Tyler piled the greens onto the tomato slices and ate them like tacos, I’m not complaining because he did eat it.
This salad is light and fresh perfect for hot summer days when you really don’t want to eat so much. It also would make a great dinner salad with the addition of some grilled chicken or fish.
Simple Salad of Tomato and Pea Greens
Ingredients per 1 serving
3 thick slices orange heirloom tomato
2 cups lightly packed pea shoot greens, flowers, and tips
3 white icicle radishes
1/4 cup roasted, salted sunflower seeds
1tbs olive oil
Salt and pepper to taste
1. Trim one radish and slice super thin, I simply peel the whole thing with a veggie peeler. Toss the radish with pea greens and arrange on a plate. Add tomato slices and whole radishes. Sprinkle on sunflower seeds, olive oil, salt, and pepper.
Do you struggle to eat your veggies or have kids that do? I’d love to hear how you overcome the vegetable struggle!