First, look what Slouching Mom nominated me for:
Way cool. It is for the blogger who demonstrates the best writing ability. You can click to vote for me, if you like. Maybe that will convince publishers that someone other than Slouching Mom likes my writing.
Now, for the real reason you clicked here today:
As I mentioned, the spinach is optional, should you have a child who will inform you that he does not eat green foods. Also, if you get your chicken from a butcher, you can have him run it through the machine to grind it. Saves you lots of time. It only took me four months of making these nuggets to figure that out.
3 slices whole wheat bread
2 or 3 large skinless chicken breasts
2 or 3 skinned apples
Three or four handfuls of washed baby spinach
2 beaten eggs
1) Toss the bread in the food processor and make bread crumbs.
2) Puree the apples and the spinach, remembering that using too much produce will make the chicken too watery to form into nuggets. Do this before even touching the chicken breasts or they won’t get totally processed, leaving flecks that prompt your pre-schooler to inform you that “something’s in there.” Remove the processed apples and spinach to a bowl.
3) Chop up the chicken unless your butcher ground it for you. Either way, puree the chicken. You want it was ground up as possible.
4) Put the apples and spinach back in the food processor with the chicken and blend them all together.
(This is the point at which you can probably hand it over to the thirteen-year-old who is learning how to cook, as suggested by Melody. The next part of the process is totally gross for adults, which means it would be incredibly fun for a thirteen-year-old boy. Should you have none handy, you’ll have to do it yourself.)
5) Form the rather soupy mixture into nugget-sized pieces.
6) Coat lightly in flour. Then dip in eggs. Then coat in bread crumbs. If you have a child who cannot eat eggs, I guess you could try it with milk, instead.
7) When you have finished making the nuggets and washed your hands twenty-seven times to recover from your Lady-Macbeth-goes-Julia-Child feeling, gently brush them with olive oil. Flip with a spatula and brush the other side.
8 ) Bake at, say, 400 degrees. Flip after ten minutes or when browned. They usually take about 15-20 minutes to bake, but it depends on how much spinach or apple you used.
Once you cool these puppies, you can wrap them in foil to freeze – I freeze them six to a pack: 2 for Zach, 4 for Ben. Then, reheat in the toaster oven.
Bonus Recipe – Spinach That Your Child May Eat
As much as the last recipe was a pain in the ass, this recipe is easy
“You can’t say he’s picky,” my friend tells me. “He eats spinach.” This is true. Zachary does eat spinach. The key is to start them on this recipe early – say eight months old or so.
Olive oil (maybe a tablespoon or two)
Cumin, curry powder, cinnamon to taste
Small dash of nutmeg if you have some
Can of chickpeas, rinsed
Cup or so of raisins
Big honkin’ tub of baby spinach
1) Heat oil over medium-low heat. Add spices and cook for a minute to blend
2) Cook chickpeas in oil (stirring frequently) till they start to soften
3) Add raisins plus almost a cup of water (say 7/8 cup, if you need an exact amount)
4) Cook for a couple of minutes to plump
5) Throw in the baby spinach, cover. Stir every few minutes till it does that magical thing spinach does when it reduces to a fraction of its initial size.
6) Puree till smooth
7) Freeze in portions
I hope none of this gave you the impression that I slave over foods for my kids. This is it. All I’ve got.