Taste Testing Tuesday – #16 – Pumpkin

Sorry I’m slow in getting today’s taste test posted! It’s been a cooking day here! Are you getting ready for Thanksgiving at your house? We are, but this year I’m sad to say it will just be my hubby and I for Thanksgiving due to Covid restrictions. We will miss our family but we are trying to make the best of it. Back to our taste test – what is one ingredient that is often used around Thanksgiving time and can be eaten many different ways? Pumpkin! (Yes, turkey would have also been a great answer!) Maybe you are having something for Thanksgiving that has pumpkin in it. Today I made 3 different recipes that use pumpkin.

#1.) Pumpkin pie

I actually don’t care for pumpkin pie, but my hubby loves it so I made one for him to enjoy. Some whip cream on top adds the finishing touch.

#2.) Pumpkin Bread

Pumpkin bread is something my mom used to make for us when I was a kid. In fact, the recipe I used today came from her. It’s baked in a loaf pan and then sliced to enjoy.

#3.) Pumpkin Bars

Pumpkin Bars are made in a cookie sheet. They can be eaten with or without frosting on top. I frosted half of the pan and then other half I froze for a later time.

What other kinds of dishes can you think of that use pumpkin in them? There’s pumpkin soup, pumpkin rolls, pumpkin pancakes, pumpkin cookies, pumpkin muffins, pumpkin cheesecake, pumpkin butter, pumpkin waffles…and the list goes on! Pumpkin is considered a super food and really healthy so I hope you will try some soon! 🙂

Taste Testing Tuesday – #15

It’s that day of the week again! Welcome to another round of Taste Testing Tuesday! This week’s tasting is a pretty simple one, but these suggestions are for a little bit older kids, not for the really young. We’re testing out different kinds of nuts, so please be cautious of your children’s ages before you try this one. And, of course, if your kids have a peanut or tree nut allergy, please bypass this week’s test. Today we have 5 nuts on hand to try, but the list of nuts you can experiment with is a long one. Hint: to do the same test we’re doing here, just buy a can of mixed nuts and separate the different kinds of nuts out into cupcake papers or into little sections on a plate.

The nuts we are taste testing this week are…

#1.) Cashews

#2.) Hazelnuts or Filberts

#3.) Peanuts

#4.) Almonds

#5.) Pecans

I hope you grabbed a piece of paper and a pencil and made yourself a quick chart to record your taste preferences for each kind of nut. Did you like all of the nuts you tried? Which one is your favorite? It would be a close call for me to pick a favorite, but I think I would go with cashews. Do certain nuts make you think of certain foods they are made in? For instance, when I think of peanuts, I think of peanut butter…or Mr. Goodbar candy bars. When I think of pecans, I think of eating them on a salad or in a pecan pie or a sweet pecan roll. Mmmm!

If this taste test seems a little too tame for you, you can find lots of variations of nuts in the store. There are spicy nuts and sweet nuts…honey roasted cashews or peanuts…chocolate almonds…spiced pecans…maple walnuts…and this list could be a very long one! Whichever kinds of nuts you decide to try, I hope you find a new nut or flavor that you really like. Happy tasting! 🙂

Taste Testing Tuesday – #13

Welcome back for another round of Taste Testing Tuesday! What fruit is plentiful this time of year in the United States? Apples! Now is the time to get your favorite apple from your local orchard or grocery store. Wait, you don’t know what your favorite apple is? Then you are in the right place! Today we’ll taste test 6 apples that are available here locally. Make yourself a little chart so you can keep track of who likes what in your family.

As you can see, I made a little sign to keep beside each type of apple. I bought 2 of each apple so one could be cut into slices to taste test and one to look at and see the differences between the apples I chose. Some differences you can talk about with the kids are the color, shape, size, if the flesh of the apple is soft or crunchy and is it sweet or tart? Here are the ones I used:

Gala

Honey Crisp

McIntosh

Ida Red

Paula Red

And last but not least, Golden Delicious.

I like apples that are a little sweet or a little tart and I especially like the softer flesh. What are your favorites? Now I’m hungry for an apple pie or apple crisp! haha! Hope you have fun tasting apples and you discover some new favorites. 🙂 Thanks for stopping by!

Taste Testing Tuesday – #12

It’s Tuesday again and you know what that means – it’s time for another Taste Testing Tuesday! This week we’re looking at some ideas for eating sweet potatoes. Let’s talk about ways to use baked sweet potatoes. I usually wash the potato and wrap it in foil, then bake it for 1 hour at 350 degrees. The sweet potato is ready to eat when it feels soft when squeezed gently. (Use a hot pad or pot holder when squeezing!)

Although there are many ways to eat sweet potatoes, we’ll look at 5 suggestions today. You can eat the peel of a sweet potato but if you are trying to convince someone that sweet potatoes really DO taste good, I suggest taking the peel off. Some people like the peel and some don’t…I’m in the “don’t like the peel” camp. 😉 For our taste test I took 1 baked sweet potato and made 5 small servings on one plate. I put butter on all the servings because I think it adds a great flavor but also helps the potato be less sticky when trying to eat it.

Suggestion #1: Butter and salt. (Isn’t that a cute salt shaker?)

Suggestion #2: Butter and molasses. This is the way my husband like to eat them. I got a little too much molasses on this small serving…oops! My molasses didn’t want to “turn off”. 😉

Suggestion #3: Butter, brown sugar and cinnamon. (Mmmm!)

Suggestion #4: Honey and cinnamon. (Very yummy!)

Suggestion #5: Butter and miniature marshmallows. (Oooo!) Heating the marshmallows on top of the sweet potato until they are nice and soft or even browned a little, makes it even tastier!

A reminder to make your chart so the kids can have fun drawing in the faces to show what they think of each variation of the sweet potato samples. A smiling face for “Yummy!”, a straight face for “It’s ok.” and a frowning face for “Umm, no thanks!”

If your sweet potatoes seem particularly sticky, adding some milk can help with that and make them more palatable. One more tip for you…after I tasted each sample of sweet potato, I put the leftovers in one bowl, added a little milk and some vanilla and sprinkled a few pecans on top. Delicious!!

Thanksgiving is next month and sweet potatoes are often on the menu. Maybe this year, more of the people in your family will enjoy eating them. 🙂 Thanks for stopping by and good luck with your Tuesday Taste Test!

Taste Testing Tuesday – #11

We’re back with another Taste Testing Tuesday! Today let’s see if we can figure out what your kids’ favorite type of salad is! A salad can be fixed in sooooo many ways that I can’t begin to list all the options, but here’s a few suggestions. Let’s start off with the main ingredient – lettuce!

We like to eat romaine lettuce but there are so many types of greens and lettuce you can try. Like fresh spinach, kale, iceberg lettuce, arugula, boston lettuce, swiss chard, green and red leaf lettuce and the list goes on!

Now let’s talk about “toppings” to include in your salad. Here’s some chopped onions, chopped celery and chopped red and orange (or green) bell peppers.

Next we have chopped fresh mushrooms, chopped apples and grated carrots.

More ingredients you might try could be chopped avocado, crumbled cooked bacon and dried cranberries.

More goodies might include croutons, chopped hard-boiled eggs, roasted cashews and roasted pecans.

Some grated cheese sprinkled on top adds a great touch. Here we have grated mild cheddar and finely grated Italian cheese mixture.

Set all the ingredients you’ve chosen for this salad out on the countertop or table. It’s nice to set it out like it’s a salad bar at your local restaurant. Start out with the lettuce and greens. If your child thinks they aren’t a fan of the greens, try to get a few small pieces in on the bottom layer that can be mixed in with the toppings and not noticed as much. 😉 Then let them heap on the toppings! Having toppings of various colors can help make the salad more appealing to the eye. Last but not least, have a little variety of salad dressings to top off the salad. Here we have Country French, Ranch and a make-it-yourself Italian.

Perhaps make your child’s salad in small amounts in case they don’t like some of the ingredients they pick. That way the whole salad isn’t ruined because of one unpleasant ingredient.

Look how nice and appetizing a salad can be!

The things you can put on a salad are almost endless! Think about things you see on a salad bar at a restaurant. Google salad ingredients. Add some chopped meat to up the amount of protein. Another fun part to eating a salad could be letting your child help shop for the ingredients. Ask them what they think would be good to include. Then let them help prepare the ingredients. The more they are included and the more praise they get for helping, the better the salad will look to them. 🙂 It’s ok if they don’t like every item, but compliment them on the ones they do try. Adding a comment on how much bigger and stronger their muscles will grow, might help too! Lol 😉 Have fun on your salad adventure!!

Taste Testing Tuesday – #10

We’re back with another exciting adventure for your taste buds! Ready? Today we’re trying dried fruit! While you can use any kind of dried fruit for your taste test, here are the 5 kinds of dried fruit that we are using today….

#1.) Raisins

#2.) Blueberries

#3.) Cherries

#4.) Cranberries

#5.) Strawberries

There are many more dried fruits to pick from like bananas, dates, figs, prunes, mango, pineapple, etc, etc. So if you use different fruit than the ones I used, that is absolutely fine!

Put a small bunch of each kind of dried fruit on a plate for each person doing the taste test.

If you have been following along each week with our taste test, you know what to do! If you’re new to Taste Testing Tuesday, be sure to go back and check out our other 9 taste tests. If you aren’t familiar with our tasting adventures, grab a piece of paper and draw a quick chart for recording what you think of each type of fruit you will be tasting. Here’s what mine looks like today:

Taste one fruit, decide what you think of it and draw a face in the corresponding chart box. A happy smiling face means you like it. A face that has a straight mouth means it’s just ok. And a frowning face means, umm, no thank you! Which fruit turned out to be the one you will ask mom or dad to buy more of please? Did you say “no, thank you” to any or them? I liked all of the fruit I tested but as you can see, Rick had a few that didn’t rank too high for him. Remember, it’s ok if your likes and dislikes are different from other people. Not everyone likes the same foods, so there is no right or wrong answer.

Now let’s add just a little more fun to today’s Taste Testing Tuesday. Take 2 or 3 pieces of each kind of fruit you have and mix them together on your plate.

Then WITHOUT PEEKING, take a piece and put it in your mouth…can you tell what kind of fruit it is just by tasting it but not looking at it? You could also have someone else put a piece in your mouth (after they have washed their hands, of course!) and you can see how many bites you guess the correct fruit. 🙂 I hope you’ve had fun with us today and maybe found some new types of dried fruit that you like to eat! Happy hugs to each of you! 🙂

Taste Testing Tuesday – #9

Hello again! We’re back with another round of Taste Testing Tuesday! Today’s main ingredient is vanilla greek yogurt. Or any kind of yogurt you would like to use. We will be using Chobani vanilla greek yogurt and trying it 5 different ways. Grab a piece of paper and a pencil to make a chart and draw a face for what you think of each taste test. Draw a smile if you like it, a straight face if it’s just ok and a frowny face if you don’t care for it. There is no wrong answer! (Don’t forget to try it plain to see if that is your favorite way.)

Put a couple of spoonful’s of yogurt into each little bowl. For our first taste test, let’s add some granola. Mmmm!

To the next bowl, let’s add a few blueberries.

In bowl #3, let’s add some miniature chocolate chips. (Oooo, did I see your eyes light up for chocolate chips?!)

In bowl #4, how about using some fresh or canned peach slices?

Just one more bowl to go! Let’s add cake sprinkles! That looks pretty cool! This bowl gets my vote for the best looking bowl!

Ok, so what did you think? Did you like them all? Which one is your favorite? Least favorite? What else can you think of to add to vanilla yogurt?

Not only are kids finding new things they like to eat through taste testing, but they are also learning that not everyone likes the same foods and that’s OKAY!! I saw this with our own grandkids last week. They looked at each other with more respect when they didn’t all like the same things but it was just fine that they didn’t. 😉 I hope you have fun testing out different ways to eat vanilla greek yogurt!

Until next week’s Taste Testing Tuesday, we’re saying so long! 🙂

Taste Testing Tuesday – #8

Hello and a happy Tuesday to you! It’s a GREAT Tuesday for us because 4 of our grandchildren are here staying with us and we are having a super-duper time being together! 🙂 They helped me with this Taste Testing Tuesday but we were having so much fun I forgot to take very many pictures. Oops! So Taste Testing Tuesday #8 is all about tasting different kinds of cheese. We have 6 kinds to try out…Colby, Smoked Swiss, Smoked Cheddar, Swiss, Muenster and American.

We started out with me drawing in the faces on the chart for what we each thought of each kind of cheese. Halfway through the kids took over drawing their own faces to express their thoughts so things got even funnier. 😉

Now for some cheesy grins! 😉 Little Miss said she liked ALL of the cheese.

This guy was not too impressed with smoked cheeses but Muenster was a definite YES! Although when his brother tried to give him Muenster with chocolate powder on it, that was a strong NO!

Middle brother liked some of the cheese, but some he could easily leave alone.

This guy was a good sport and let his Grandma talk him into participating. 😉 His favorite is Swiss.

We hope you’ll take a Taste Testing Tuesday Cheese test too! (Wow, that’s a mouthful!) Thanks for stopping by!

Taste Testing Tuesday – #7

Here we are again with another Taste Testing Tuesday for you! (Wow, that week went by quickly!) We will be testing out ways to eat graham crackers!

I wonder what you think of when you think of eating a graham cracker? Do you like them plain or with something on them? When I was little, my mom would occasionally fix us a special treat by putting frosting on graham crackers. Yum! For our taste test today, I added a few sprinkles just for fun. 😉

What about adding peanut butter and jelly?

Dipping graham crackers into vanilla yogurt is pretty tasty!

When you think of graham crackers, do you immediately think of making s’mores over a campfire? Mmmm! If you’ve never had a s’more before, it’s made with a piece of milk chocolate candy bar, graham crackers and a marshmallow that’s been roasted over the campfire. You make a sandwich with the chocolate and marshmallow in between 2 graham crackers. It’s ooey, gooey, messy and quite yummy! But if you don’t have a campfire going, you can try making s’mores in the house. Melt some chocolate candy bar in the microwave oven and add just a little coconut oil and stir until it’s a uniform consistency. Dip one end of the section of graham cracker into the chocolate and tilt the cracker to make the chocolate spread a little further. Add 2 miniature marshmallows on top of the chocolate. Place the coated cracker on a piece of wax paper on a plate and put it in the refrigerator so it will harden. Or eat it while it’s warm!

That’s 4 ways to taste test graham crackers! Are any of those ways new to you? Which one is your favorite? Do you have any other suggestions for a good way to eat a graham cracker? I hope you have enjoyed our latest taste test! Thanks for joining us! 🙂

Taste Testing Tuesday – #6

It’s Tuesday again and time for your favorite blog post – Taste Testing Tuesday! 🙂 Today we’re checking out some tasty foods that go great with tortilla chips. (Most kids like tortilla chips, right? Let’s sneak in getting them to try some new foods that go great with them.) Get a piece of paper ready with your chart to write down what each person thinks of each taste test. Here’s the goodies we used this time: Tortilla chips…

Taco flavored hamburger…

Guacamole…

Refried beans with some cheddar cheese…

And hummus.

Guacamole and Hummus can be bought or you can make your own. I found LOTS of recipes for each online. Make it a fun time with your Taste Test by having everyone try the new things at the same time. Dish some of each food out on each person’s plate and give them a handful of tortilla chips. Letting each one draw a smiley face on their chart adds to the fun.

Feel free to switch out any of the food items we used and add some of your own. Salsa and sour cream could also be fun foods to add. Even mixing some of the foods together might be a hit. Enjoy! I hope everyone finds something new that they like! 🙂