May I vent for a moment?

I’m supposed to be on a beach right now, in a bathing suit, eating Spanish rice and Chimichangas.   Instead I’m in a hoodie, sipping tea at my kitchen table.  And I’m kinda bummed about it.

We’ve had to cancel three (I repeat, THREE) family trips in the past few years due to unforeseen circumstances.   We were optimistic the bad luck was past us and we would finally be on a plane this week.   Yet, the universe has other plans for our family.

My youngest daughter contracted the highly contagious Hand Foot & Mouth (coxsackie) virus last week.  I realized just how contagious it was after my other daughter succumbed to the virus a few days ago, despite keeping her at a distance and washing hands incessantly.    If it wasn’t for the red bumps on their bodies and somewhat limited appetite, you would never know they were ill.  Both are happily playing together (for now) as I write this.   But I would feel terrible if we passed this on to other families and ruined their vacation.  So we regrettably cancelled our trip 18 hours before take off.

If there’s one thing I’ve learned since having kids, it’s NEVER to travel without cancellation insurance.

Thankfully my 3 year old, who was thrilled about going to “Mes-ico”, hasn’t mentioned it or notice we were supposed to be on a plane yesterday.  After I publish this post I’ll be discreetly unpacking her luggage and hiding her new bathing suits.

Ok, now I’m done venting.  I needed that – thanks for listening!

Cauliflower Spanish Rice (3)

There are so many reasons to be sad about being quarantined in our Toronto home.   However, instead of sitting here in our sweaters feeling sorry for ourselves, we figured we could bring Mexico to us!  And it gives me more time to give you incredibly helpful mealtime strategies for your little ones (even the picky eaters).

Last night we did exactly that and enjoyed my healthy take on this popular Mexican dish – Spanish Rice.   I’ve made so many variations of cauliflower rice in the past and they always leave me impressed and inspired to try another.  So I decided to swap the traditional rice for cauliflower in this recipe too.   While ‘cauliflower rice’ may not have the same taste and texture as ‘real rice’, it is damn delicious.   We served it along with organic corn tortilla taco shells filled with pulled chicken and mango avocado salsa.

If you have a picky eater who loves his carbs, this may be a new “rice” to rotate in and try.  Remember multiple exposures, lots of fun and zero pressure will help encourage him/her to try something new.

Who needs Mexico when you’ve got a Mexican-inspired Spanish Rice as good as this!

Paleo Mexican Rice

Spanish Cauliflower Rice

Inspired by The Food Charlatan

Ingredients

  • 1 head of cauliflower (medium)
  • 3 small carrots
  • 2 Tbsp. ghee (or butter)
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 3 cloves garlic, crushed
  • 1 Tbsp. chili powder
  • 1 Tbsp. cumin
  • 1/4 cup chicken or vegetable broth
  • 3/4 cup tomato sauce or pureed tomatoes
Directions
  1. Remove stem from cauliflower and chop into chunks (small enough to fit in food processor).
  2. Place in food processor and pulse until cauliflower resembles rice.  Set aside in large bowl.
  3. Place carrots in food processor and pulse until it’s diced.   Add to cauliflower.
  4. Add butter and garlic to large pan over medium heat.  Let sit for one minute.
  5. Add cauliflower mixture and all spices (cumin, salt, chili powder), stirring for about 8 minutes.
  6. Add tomatoes and broth and cook for another few minutes.   Serve warm.

Note: you may want to increase the quantity of spices/seasoning depending on size of cauliflower and your preferences.

free picky eating webinar