Over the past year, I’ve made a gradual and informed move to eating healthier and moving more. The dietary changes haven’t been all that difficult to make, thanks in part to my love of veggies and fruit. The bigger challenge has been to find ways to incorporate vegetables into our meals without them being boring. A girl can only eat so many salads.
Research shows that the palate of anyone, any age, can be changed via what nutritionist’s call “habituation” and “flavor training.” We know as adults this can happen when we, for example start using less salt or sugar. I switched to diet soda a few years ago and now regular soda is far too sweet for me! I went from drinking double-double coffee and had to pour out the drive-through one I picked up last week when I had a brain-snooze and ordered it as a DD instead of black.
Studies also show that the earlier you introduce a food, the more likely a child will accept it and continue to eat it throughout their lifetime. A child’s palate is set at around 3 years of age. The choices of food you offer your child during the first few years of his or her life influence preferences later on in their development. So, if your children are older than 3 it doesn’t mean they can’t learn to love new foods – spicy or tangy are one that can take more work, but it’s worth it for the world of flavours it can open up!
Now that Spring is here, we’re definitely using the grill more. My husband grills marinated chicken breasts for me every Sunday night so I can use them in wraps the following week for lunch (he’s the best!) Typically night’s dinner is some other protein along with a huge garden salad made with my favorite dressing. Now that the grill is more readily available, we’ve been making veggie kabobs as a more interesting side-dish for the kids, and adding different sauces and marinades to the veggies.
Do your kids get enough vegetables in their diets? According to Statistics Canada, only 2 out of 5 Canadian children eat their “7 a day” so we’ve got some work to do. A dip or marinade is certainly one way to encourage kids to eat more vegetables, either raw or cooked – but have you considered mustard?
Since I’m counting calories, I’ve been careful with marinades, dressings, and dips while also reminding myself that healthy fats like olive oil are good for me too. A recipe for Maille Honey Dijon Mustard Marinade on the Maille.ca site caught my eye, and I tweaked it just a bit to lower the calorie count. Brushed on as a sauce while grilling veggie kabobs made these AH-MAZING! Here’s an interesting reason why – did you know that when used with oil and vinegar, Dijon mustard acts as a binding agent giving it a delicious, smooth texture! Mixing olive oil, Maille Balsamic Vinegar and Maille Honey Dijon Mustard created an amazing sauce for these veggies and it will be my go-to recipe for grilling vegetables from now on!
Here is my take on the marinade recipe found at the link above:
1 Tbsp Maille Honey Dijon Mustard
2 Tbsp Maille Balsamic Vinegar
3 Tbsp Olive Oil
salt and pepper to taste
Simply prepare your veggie kabobs – I like mushrooms, peppers, red onion and zuchhini – then brush on the sauce as you grill and turn the kabobs. Save a little bit to brush on right before serving too! Not sure on how long to grill particular vegetables? Maille has a helpful Grill Guide on their site!
If you’re watching your diet like I am, you’ll be happy to know how waist-line friendly dijon mustard is! Dijon mustard contains only 30 calories per tablespoon and a good number of nutrients, such as omega-3 fatty acids, selenium, fiber, protein, magnesium, iron and calcium.
If you’d like to try Maille Honey Dijon Mustard, you can click here to find a downloadable $1 off coupon!
One of my readers is going to win a Maille Prize Package valued at over $50! In it, you’ll find a variety of Maille products in jars and squeezable bottles, ready and waiting for you to create something delicious this spring in your kitchen (and on the grill!) Simply enter your name and email address in the form below and click BEGIN to be in to win! Follow Maille Canada on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram for bonus entries too!