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Category: Cooking Tips

The Perfect Easy Hamburger. Bren’s Burgers.

by bkhoury on July 03, 2014

The Perfect Hamburger. Bren's Burgers
I wouldn’t want to suggest growing up on a cattle ranch in Nebraska has made me an expert on burgers, but since I was 12 years old it was my job to “throw the burgers on the grill” for many a hungry boy. I have had quite a lot of time to perfect my technique! Read More

Teaching Children to Combat Instant Gratification

by bkhoury on October 11, 2012

You know the routine. The phone rings and suddenly chaos breaks out in the house throwing any appearance that I might actually have my kids under control out the window. Or contending with dinner-time fits as a sudden burst of hunger engulfs little tummies unable to hold it together while dinner is prepared. We are a society of instant gratification. First call. No answer? E-mail. Text. Call again. Is this demanding (to be polite) behavior being passed on to the next generation? Read More

Lunchbox Tips

by bkhoury on September 06, 2012

Think outside the bread: Everyone needs a change from the classic sandwich once in a while. We love to do dips and crackers. Dips can be protein packed and delicious. Try our white bean and rosemary spread or our black bean dip with homemade corn chips. We also love putting in protein packed salads. Try our tropical chicken or other salads using grains such as quinoa. Read More

Tips From Our Readers: How To Encourage Your Kids to Eat Vegetables

by bkhoury on June 28, 2012

We received so many wonderful suggestions to encourage your kids to eat vegetables that we had to share! We are so excited that all our subscribers are finding success with the veggies! Read More

The Perfect Hard Boiled Egg

by bkhoury on April 05, 2012

As I was making dozens of hard boiled eggs this week, I realized how easy it is to either botch up this simple staple or make it perfectly. You can either end up with gross green rings surrounding a brownish yolk or crack open beautiful perfectly yellow hard boiled eggs. I personally think the perfectly yellow ones taste better! Read More

I LOVE Asparagus

by bkhoury on March 15, 2012

I haven’t purchased asparagus since the hazy days of summer. My kids loved it when I would throw the spears on the grill with some olive oil and sea salt. But the other day there was a small batch of fresh asparagus in the market. My spring fever is running hot. I snatched up a couple bunches and brought them home for asparagus soup and everything else I could put it in. Read More

Kitchen De-Clutter

by bkhoury on January 12, 2012

Prior to the holidays, I tried to cull our toy room of toys which the boys had either outgrown, broken or simply weren’t enamored with to make room for the new. How fortunate we are to so quickly find ourselves overloaded with so many toys. But I find the reality is that less is more. If they have fewer toys, they make better use of the ones they have – using them in creative ways and really utilizing their learning potential. I also thought it would be a great time to take the same philosophy in the kitchen. Read More

Mommy Comforter

by bkhoury on January 05, 2012

There are certain inalienable laws of parenthood. If your baby sleeps through the night you don’t tell a single soul lest the next night they will keep your smugness in check by waking you up at least three times. And you most certainly don’t discuss the stomach flu in a silly blog as the stomach monsters will be smiling down on you seeking their reprisal. Read More

Giving The Gift of Food

by bkhoury on December 22, 2011

As we prepare to travel over the holidays, we decided to celebrate the “coming of Santa” a little early this year. And yes, it was the best year yet with my three year old in awe over the fact that he timidly had asked Santa just a few weeks prior for a train roundhouse and some troublesome trucks. (Ryan and I both expressed slight relief that our son when confronted with a strange guy in a red suit found him creepy enough to have major reservations about getting too close.) And when Santa came, he actually LEFT them under the tree (thank you grandma and grandpa). Read More

Let Them Eat Cake?  With Red Die #3

by bkhoury on November 17, 2011

Recently for my two year old’s birthday, I decided, with the strong prodding from my mother in law, to be an overachieving mom and indulge my son in a homemade Thomas the Train cake. I always feel like my younger boy is getting the short end of the stick on stuff like homemade cakes, new clothes and birthday parties. Like many of you with boys, we are all about trains all the time in our house. I decided to really splash out and make him a James cake (Thomas is so last year). For those of you who aren’t familiar with James, he is a gallant bright red train engine. Read More

Power to the (Little) People by Jennifer Davis

by bkhoury on October 05, 2011

When I was a kid, my younger brother went through a phase of only eating broccoli if it was doused in A-1 steak sauce. While the thought of that brown, soggy broccoli still turns my stomach today, I realized that there’s a lesson to be learned here: giving kids a little bit of freedom with their food can make a huge difference at meal time.

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Sell It Baby! By Jennifer Davis

by bkhoury on September 21, 2011

When I left my job in public relations several years ago, I thought my skills in marketing and persuasion would be tucked away never to be used again, much like my dry clean only wardrobe and nice shoes. Little did I know that motherhood would offer me daily opportunities to put my talents to use. Read More

Lunchbox solutions from the kitchen of Jennifer Davis

by bkhoury on September 01, 2011

The joy of sending my two (not so) little ones off to school last week was quickly tempered by the fact that I now have to face nine months of packing school lunches. I also got a charming request from my first grader: no repeat lunches. It went something like this: “Think about it, mom. This way, I can eat the rainbow of healthy food you’re always talking about and you can brush up on your cooking skills!” Um, yeah. Thanks kid. Read More

Bite sized

by bkhoury on August 04, 2011

As Hunter starts to get a little older (and more independent), I find myself becoming not lazy exactly, but a little loosy goosy about how I serve his food. For example, I might try to give him an entire slice of toast or bagel to eat. Or an entire chicken tender to bite. Now, I know what you’re thinking, “The kid should learn how to bite off a simple piece of bagel for heaven’s sake.” Read More

Do you grill?

by bkhoury on June 16, 2011

It has come to my attention from a number of sources (who will remain anonymous) that these amazing women have never grilled anything in their lives. I’m not talking about on one of those handy dandy grill pans that you plop on the stove in the comfort of your kitchen. I’m talking about firing up the real deal with all the elements: flames, tools, charcoal or propane. Read More

Pasta Detox

by bkhoury on March 10, 2011

The past few weeks have been madness around here. And with that, I found myself leaning on pasta for lunches and dinners. We’ve had a babysitter transition and I started fixing a healthy pasta dish in the morning that she could easily feed the kids for lunch. (Until the sitter became accustomed to our schedules while juggling two boys) At least I knew the kids would have full tummies while they were getting comfortable with a new person in their lives. Read More

Ready-Made Rice in a Bag?

by bkhoury on March 03, 2011

I love trying new food that offers a time-saving solution, but I have to admit I have been a slow mover on the ready-made rice in a bag concept. I first saw this curious looking bag of brown mush at Trader Joe’s a few years ago (which by the way is my favorite store and they have since improved the packaging of the brown mush). The concept of pre-cooked rice sitting in a vacuum sealed bag just did not appeal to my sense of good food. I immediately categorized it as ready-made food with all the nutrients sapped out of it and salt and preservatives added. Read More

A Perspective on Salt and Sodium

by bkhoury on January 14, 2011

Ok, so I admit, now that my children eat everything that we eat, I find it REALLY hard to prepare food without a dash of salt here and there. So I went on a mission to find out how much sodium I may be adding to my little one's diet. Read More

Quick Recipes No Matter What

by bkhoury on June 03, 2010

I recently got around to watching the film “Food Inc.” Being in the middle of America’s bread basket, I found it fascinating. We are usually pretty good about avoiding fast food chains, but one has to admit when you are in the car with two kids it is SO easy to go through the drive through. Though I am somewhat proud to say that Will doesn’t like McDonald’s chicken nuggets (I’m under no illusion this phenomenon will last for long). Read More

Nitrates in Meat

by bkhoury on March 21, 2010

When looking for convenient food to serve, it is difficult to avoid cured meats. From ham to cold cuts to sausage to the good old hot dog, they are everywhere! And let’s face it: They taste good.
In many stores now, one can find foods labeled “uncured” “naturally cured” or “nitrate free.” So what exactly are nitrates and are they bad for you? Read More

Food Inspired by Books (by Guest Blogger, Jennifer Davis)

by bkhoury on February 24, 2010

When trying to decide what to feed your child, oftentimes you can turn to your nearest bookshelf for inspiration. Don’t worry, I’m not talking about Mastering the Art of French Cooking or the latest issue of Gourmet magazine. Instead, your kids’ stash of books may be just the resource you need. Read More

Out With The Resolutions!

by bkhoury on January 20, 2010

So it is mid-January and once again I made all the cliche resolutions to myself. Get in better shape, eat healthy, spend wisely. I was thinking, isn't it better to focus on the little impacts you can make day to day? The best way I have found to do that is simply organization. When it comes to feeding kids (old and young alike) there are a few things I have found to help me-- especially now that I am even more pressed for time. Read More

Fresh Baked Cookies (by Guest Blogger Jennifer Davis)

by bkhoury on October 17, 2009

Remember the way cartoons would depict the aroma of food cooking as a tangible object? A hazy shape would emerge from the oven, waft over to the nearest person (or cat or mouse), form into the shape of a hand and slowly beckon, “this way- follow me to something good.” That’s the scene in my house this afternoon as the kids walk into the kitchen and ask if I’ve been baking cookies. Read More

Cooking Motivation

by bkhoury on August 07, 2009

Maybe it's the lazy, hazy days of August, or maybe it's the fact that I am pregnant and getting bigger by the day, but sometimes my cooking motivation just goes down the tubes. Inevitably though, my laziness backfires. We don't eat as healthfully and the whole family always seems slightly unsatisfied, requiring more snacks and "searching for something" in the fridge. Even William doesn't eat as well as usual. We also end up spending a lot more money by running to the grocery store for a last minute meal,or worse, the take-out joint.
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Rejecting Vegetables

by bkhoury on July 31, 2009

I was thinking back to when William ate only baby food and how pureed carrots were as sweet as candy for him. I'm hesitant to mention this, but I'm very lucky in that he absolutely still loves almost all vegetables. If I give him a cheese and spinach pizza, he will pick off the spinach first. Is my child just weird? Read More

Trying New Foods

by bkhoury on July 16, 2009

Getting your child to try all these new tastes and textures can be challenging at times. I swear sometimes William literally looks at me like I am nuts for serving him something. The other day I made some brownies and offered him a little bite. He must have thought I was trying to serve him dirt! So here are a couple strategies I use.
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Keeping Your Child Busy While Cooking

by bkhoury on July 07, 2009

Create a “busy zone” in your kitchen to get your child involved and keep them entertained. There is nothing worse than a winey child holding on to your leg for dear life while you are carrying a hot pot across the kitchen. Read More

Encouraging Your Child to Eat Meat

by bkhoury on June 02, 2009

After struggling all this time, I finally had a break through with William these past few weeks. He started gobbling up meat! Ok, so I “doctored” it up a little bit, but we’ve come a long way from the immediate throwing it on the floor rejection scenario. At his 12 month well visit he was border line anemic, so getting enough iron in him through meat has been in the back of my mind a lot. Read More

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