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Is this a healthy dinner, mummy? Is a question Elfie asks me on a regular basis.
I’m no health nut (OK, I am a bit) but I do like to make sure the family gets the required amount of fruit and veg daily, and this seems to have rubbed off on Elfie (not Hux, unfortunately) who seems to actively enjoy healthy choices over not-so-healthy choices.
Parenting job done here, I think!
This is all well and good, but unfortunately I’ve been really stretched for time when it comes to cooking, lately. We eat out or order in more often than I’d like to admit – Deliveroo arriving in my town has made this SO EASY – and though we try and make the ‘right’ choices, sometimes we trip up. And with it being summer and all – we need to be more healthy!
Which is why I have to get inventive with the kids and their diets. Hux would eat plain pasta with nothing else if I let him, and Elfie is a sweetie fiend. So it’s up to me to try and fill them up with as much goodness as possible, before we head for the dried pasta/Haribo/Five Guys menu.
ENTER: WIGGLY WORMS.
Wiggly worms were something I was introduced to when we were on holiday in Greece this year, as inventively all the carrot on the kids buffet was spiralized into worms. My kids turned their nose up, and I thought nothing of it until I caught some other mums cajoling their kids into eating carrots by terming them worms. GENIUS! As soon as I started calling the carrots ‘worms’ they were hoofed down. Simple things, eh?
I hopped on this as soon as I got home which was, incidentally, the week I was invited to try the new Morphy Richards Spiralizer Express (RRP: £50). It’s an amazing contraption that makes Spiralizing as painless as possible: from noodles to salad ribbons… it really lets you get creative with your healthy eating.
The classic dinner that I like making with this Spiralizer is a good old spag bol. The recipe is so simple that I can make it with my eyes closed – it was one of the first my mum taught me – you can conceal extra veg in it (I often pop mushrooms and peppers in there) and it’s budget-friendly, too.
Now, this Spiralizer is insanely easy to use. You pop the veg (or fruit) in the top, stick the lid on and use the paddle to force the food down and through the rotating blades. The pieces of the machine are then de-constructed and washed in warm soapy water, ready for the next use. It’s also really easy to store and slides right in my cupboard, not taking up much room at all.
When we have a spag bol the kids choose carrots for their ‘wiggly worms’ and I go for my all-time favourite, courgette. Delicious.
Here’s how to make your own Wiggly Worm Bolognese:
Wiggly Worm Bolognese
2 small onions
optional: additional veg (i.e. 1 courgette, 1 pepper, handful of mushrooms)
2 cloves of garlic
1 500g pack beef mince
2 tins chopped tomatoes
1 tbsp tomato puree
2 tsp sugar
1 tsp oregano
salt and pepper, to taste
Wiggly Worms: 1 carrot or courgette per person
Note: if you’re worried the bolognese is not substantial enough without pasta, try adding red lentils to the mix… yum!
- Finely chop your onions and cook in olive oil on a low heat until translucent. Add any other veg at this point as well as your finely chopped (or minced garlic).
- Add the beef mince and break up with a wooden spoon. Cook until browned all over.
- Tip in your 2 tins of tomatoes, tomato puree, sugar and oregano. Simmer on a low heat for about an hour, then season to taste.
- When you’re ready to eat, spiralize your veg in the Morphy Richards Spiralizer. If you’d rather the veg was warm, sautee gently for a few minutes in a wok or frying pan with a little bit of oil.
- Serve the bolognese on top of the courgette or carrot noodles, with basil and parmesan if you like. Enjoy!
Thanks to Debenhams for sending me a Morphy Richards Spiralizer Express to try!