Tag Archives: vegetables

One-Pot Vegetable Chicken Miso Soup

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From the back of the car I could hear this squeaky voice and I knew Hannah still had a scratchy throat. My poor, sweet girl!  Don’t you just hate it when someone you love is not feelin’ good?  Just tears at my heartstrings! So, naturally I told her we could have whatever she wanted for dinner. She replied, “Soup. With vegetables. Miso soup but with vegetables. And chicken.”  Uh. Oops. Maybe I should have given her options. Then I thought about what we had on hand and figured I could just wing something.

Hahnchen (chicken) for our new fave chicken soup.

Hahnchen (chicken) for our new fave chicken soup.

Next thing I know this cold circled through our entire house over the course of a few weeks ending with our sweet Ry-guy. He definitely has it the worst, so sad!  I swear if he asked Daddy for a convertible today he’d probably get it with his sad little voice. I made the same move today asking Ryan what he wanted for dinner and saying it could be whatever he wanted. He promptly grabbed a bag of parcooked rice from the pantry but then said, “I want the miso soup you made for Hannah.”  With the veggies, chicken and noodles, bud? Yep!

I figure if he wanted it, too, it is probably worth sharing. Make this for someone you love, especially when they are under the weather.

One-Pot Vegetable Chicken Miso Soup

Ingredients
2 tablespoons olive oil
5 green onions, thinly sliced on a bias (pale and dark green parts)
5 stalks celery, thinly sliced on a bias
4 carrots, grated
1 garlic clove, minced
1 quart (32 ounces) fat-free, reduced sodium chicken broth (such as Swanson’s)
1 quart water
3 boneless, skinless chicken breasts
1 inch piece of ginger, peeled and grated
1/4 cup white miso*
2 cups thin egg noodles
2 limes, zested and juiced

Directions
1.  Heat oil in a ditch oven (I use my 5ish quart round Le Creuset) over medium heat.  Add the green onions, celery, carrots and garlic. Season with salt and pepper and sauté for about 10 minutes, stirring frequently until almost tender.

2.  Add chicken broth, water, chicken and ginger and stir. Bring to a boil and reduce to simmer for about 10 minutes until chicken is cooked through.

3.  Remove chicken to a plate and set aside. Stir in miso and noodles and simmer until noodles are al dente (just under what the package directions suggest). While noodles cook dice or shred chicken, whichever you prefer.

4.  When noodles are cooked remove from heat and stir in chicken, lime zest and lime juice. Season with salt and pepper to taste and enjoy!

*White miso is more yellow than white. Ask for help finding it at your friendly local Asian grocer. You can find more recipes that use white miso on my Pinterest page.

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Gettin’ kids’ plates in shape

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We usually have pickles for a veggie at lunch.  Lots of crunch, counts as a veggie and healthier than chips!

We usually have pickles for a veggie at lunch. Lots of crunch, counts as a veggie and healthier than chips!

A few years ago  I was able to put together some posters for a pediatric clinic on getting kids’ plates in shape and saw those posters still hanging in the patient rooms when I brought Chloe for her two month visit (how is she two months old already?!).  Since those great tips have stood the test of time I decided to share them with you! 🙂

Engaging kids in healthy eating at a young age is really important to give kids the tools they’ll need to maintain healthy eating habits for life.  Little kids are much different from adolescents which has its benefits and its challenges.  My little guys are always so excited to help in the kitchen but can barely stir without spilling all of the ingredients.  Teenagers have a lot more independence and could be a real help in the kitchen and with meal planning…but it is likely not as high a priority for them as Twitter.  Here are my tips for trying to engage kids in healthy eating throughout their childhood.

Infants:

-Try mixing a vegetable puree, such as pureed squash or carrots, into your baby’s favorite fruit puree, such as apples or pears

-Feed your child in a highchair during meal time with the rest of the family so they can learn by watching your example

Hannah likes to say to "listen to your body" and it tells you to "eat healthy food".  Such a dietitian kid!

Hannah likes to say to “listen to your body” and it tells you to “eat healthy food”. Such a dietitian kid!

Toddlers:

-Encourage toddlers to explore new foods by using play foods and plates that focus on fruits and vegetables

-Switch to whole wheat white bread from white bread (so many different brands have gotten on board with this trend!)

-Rather than drinking juice, encourage your toddler to drink water or diluted juice and eat fruit at each meal, such as mandarin oranges or canned pineapple

These little guys love to help in the kitchen.  "Stir, stir, stir!" as Ryan would say!

These little guys love to help in the kitchen. “Stir, stir, stir!” as Ryan would say!

Preschoolers:

-Try serving two non-starchy vegetables at each meal and allow your preschooler to choose how much of each they would like to eat

-Allow your preschooler to select the vegetables or fruits while at the grocery store

-Take your preschooler to a local farm or garden through the Spring, Summer and Fall so they can see vegetables grow and change throughout the seasons

-Try switching to whole grain breads and pastas, or mix together brown rice with white rice and use half whole wheat and half regular pasta

 

School-Age Children:

-Encourage low-fat dairy, such as skim or 1% milk and reduced-fat cheeses

-Allow your school-age child to help you prepare meals to familiarize them with different foods

-Try to grow vegetables with your school-age child…kids will often try something they had a hand in producing

-Encourage your child to select the vegetables or fruits available with school lunch at school daily

Tweens:

-Encourage your pre-teen to cook meals with non-starchy vegetables and whole grains for the family

-Prepared fruits and vegetables such as carrot sticks and berries are great after-school snacks

-Mix some Cheerios or Mini Wheats in with your pre-teens favorite cereal

-Have your pre-teen design and laminate placemats to use at dinner time to help “rate your plate” each day using the MyPlate strategy (visit www.ChooseMyPlate.gov)

Kale sprouts would be a great new veggie to try with tweens and teens!

Kale sprouts would be a great new veggie to try with tweens and teens!

Teenagers:

-Have your teen select a new fruit or vegetable for the family to try each week…encourage conversation

-Encourage your teen to include low-fat dairy such as low-fat cheese or reduced-fat sour cream

-Allow your teen to help with menu planning for the week.  Let them make sure each meal planned includes a whole grain, fruit and non-starchy vegetable

-Try using smaller plates, such as a ten inch plate and allow your teen to have unlimited amounts of the fruit and vegetables served at dinner

 

 

How do you keep your plate “in shape”?  Let me know in the comments section below.  Thanks for reading!

 

 

 

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