Healthy family: Use sandwiches to introduce new tastes

  • Article by: MEREDITH DEEDS , Star Tribune
  • Updated: May 7, 2014 - 3:09 PM

Although always popular with kids, sandwiches also are a way to introduce new flavors.

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Meredith Deeds, Special to the Star Tribune Spiced Beef Pita Sandwiches with Moroccan Carrot Slaw.

Photo: Meredith Deeds • Special to the Star Tribune,

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Want to make a child happy at dinner? Serve sandwiches. PB&J, grilled cheese, BLTs all are perennial favorites, but even though they might be crowd pleasers, it’s always nice to mix it up with something new and perhaps a little healthier, too.

Sometimes the best way to introduce new flavors or ideas into your family’s diet is to “sandwich” them in between a couple of pieces of bread. It’s always easier to get a child to try new foods in the context of familiar favorites.

I particularly like this concept when it comes to veggies. In addition to the traditional lettuce and tomato option, I like to add cucumber slices to egg salad sandwiches, roasted red peppers to ham and cheese, and avocado to a plain-Jane turkey sandwich. Not only are the additions healthy, they’re also delicious.

In the case of these Spiced Beef Pita Sandwiches, Moroccan Carrot Slaw is like a surprise nestled inside a pita pocket. While carrot slaw may seem like a strange ingredient to include in a sandwich, this brightly flavored condiment adds just the right amount of acidity and crunch when combined with the cumin-, coriander- and cinnamon-scented beef patties and creamy Greek yogurt dressing.

The fact that these sandwiches seem a lot like burgers only makes it easier to convince young diners to give them a try.

Meredith Deeds of Edina is the author of “Everyday to Entertaining” and “The Big Book of Appetizers.” Reach her at meredith@meredithdeeds.com. Follow her on Twitter @meredithdeeds.

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