Things We Love! The Sneaky Chef

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This article is featured in the August '07 Feeding Your Family Newsletter
Keeping Your Cool • This Month's Recipes: Gazpacho, Quesadillas and Guacamole
 • What's in Season? Tomatoes!Things We Love! The Sneaky Chef

Health Check: The Rainbow Connection

By Larissa Phillips

Parents have been sneaking things like spinach and peas into their kids' food for generations with great, sneaky satisfaction. But never has the process been so refined as in the The Sneaky Chef (Running Press, 2007; $17.95), a new cookbook by Missy Chase Lapine. Lapine, the former publisher of Eating Well magazine, was dismayed by her kids' lack of interest in nutritionally wholesome foods. She began tinkering, and came up with a slew of fantastic recipes, assembled into this clever cookbook.

Each recipe uses one of several purees - such as Purple Puree, made of spinach and blueberries. The purees can be made ahead of time, frozen in small quantities, and brought out for last-minute sneaking.

Dishes that have gone over well in my house include Magic Meatballs (with spinach/broccoli/pea puree), Easy Homemade Pasta Sauce (with pureed white beans and zucchini) and Frozen Applesauce (with blueberries blended in, then frozen into pops). Kids in my cooking class scarfed down the "Brainy Brownies" - even after mixing in the suspicious-looking spinach-blueberry puree. And my children and my husband tore through frozen fruit pops with a couple frozen cubes of Purple Puree slipped into the blender. Need convincing? Check out Lapine's Web site,