This is the second week of my new goal, getting the kids involved in cooking dinner. I decided that my deep love of my slow cooker, although amazingly convenient, wasn’t helping the kids learn the joy and value of time spent in the kitchen. I also decided that because Wednesdays are a day that I generally reserve for a mid week afternoon at home, I would give the slow cooker a rest and make a simple, kid friendly meal that my two little ones could help me prepare.
This week I decided to give Black Bean and Chickpea Flautas a try.
A flauta is a Mexican dish that is basically a rolled tortilla stuffed with something and fried. I want to keep this meal vegetarian because I don’t want the kids touching raw meat so I decided the filling would be black beans and chickpeas and that we would bake them instead of fry them.
We eat black beans very often because they are so healthy. Black beans contain protein, fiber, iron, phosphorus, calcium, magnesium, manganese, copper, zinc and potassium. Chickpeas contain many of the same vitamins and minerals but also add in vitamin c, selenium and folate, the last 2 have been shown to help prevent cancer cells from multiplying. What’s not to love?!? Super healthy and tasty!
I thought that this would be the perfect dinner for my kids to help with. No fire, mashing is involved, and the kids are encouraged to play with the food. As an added bonus I was going to have the kids make a really basic avocado dip while the flautas were in the oven.
It all started out so well. The kids were excited. They eagerly pushed their chairs up to the counter and started playing in the silverware drawer (I am not sure why they both do this but every time the help me with anything in the kitchen they start by picking the utensils they want to use. Generally this ends up being the largest spoon they can find).
Black Bean and Chickpea Flautas
Put everything in a big bowl, grab a potato masher and start mashing. You could also do this in the food processor but honestly I thought the kids would enjoy the mashing and I didn’t want to dirty up the food processor.
Take a tortilla and spread some of the bean mixture down the center. Traditionally these are made with corn tortillas but I used flour, only because I wanted to use the small ones. It really doesn’t matter, I promise. Roll it up. If you put a little but of the black beans on the inside just at the end it wont come open as easily. Then you put them on a cookie sheet and bake them in a preheated oven (around 150 C) for about 10 minutes.
While they were baking I let the kids play with the miniblender.
For the avocado dipping sauce
I used 2 ripe avocados, a generous amount of salt and lime juice. My son put in the lime juice so, I’m sorry, I honestly can’t be sure how much he used. My first guess was lots but the lime taste wasn’t overwhelming so he couldn’t have used that much. As the kids were joyously pressing the button I slowly added a little bit of water till the mixture was nice and creamy. That’s it. I wanted to keep it super simple and we love avocado so I didn’t feel the need to add any more seasoning.
It was really easy and a very small mess was made.
My son wasn’t really into it this week. He loved the blender but only rolled one flauta and refused to do more. He also refused to mash but enjoyed measuring the spices. My daughter grabbed a giant spoon and was eating the bean mixture like she hasn’t been fed in a week.
Last week they both ate loads of their home made dinner so I was expecting that again but unfortunately that didn’t happen. My son completely refused to eat. Wouldn’t even taste it! Pushed his plate away and got up from the table. I even served corn with it and that is his favorite thing ever! I will honestly say that I was annoyed. My daughter, on the other hand, devoured hers and grabbed her brothers plate and started on his (she does this often when my picky little eater refuses to eat).
I was honestly really confused by my sons reaction to what should have been a perfect kid friendly meal until later that night he told me that he was sick and his tummy hurt. By bed time he had a little bit of a fever. I realized that it wasn’t the dinner at fault but the illness.
So, this week wasn’t a grand success like I had hoped but I did spend some fun time with the kids in the kitchen and my daughter really enjoyed the meal. As a bonus my husband and I also really enjoyed dinner so I will make them again.
We will see how next week goes!
Want to know how week 1 went?