Broccoli Recipe for Toddlers

So I don't expect to be posting a lot of recipes here because I don't consider myself much of a cook, but I do have to say that I've been doing a totally awesome job at getting tasty, nutritious, homemade meals on the table every night since I quit my job. because I totally rock. And so does the ingredient search at allrecipes.com. (Not a sponsored plug.)

Nugget and I were at Costco the other day and I picked up a Costco-sized bag of broccoli florets. "I yike broccoli!" Nugget told me happily. Shocked but hopeful, I put the bag in the cart and steamed some broccoli that night. After much scolding and cajoling and threatening, he put one tiny piece in his mouth and spit it out. Another night I made my (unbelievably delicious) homemade macaroni casserole, with broccoli and ham. "'Oni cheese" is Nugget's favorite food, hands down, but he almost refused to eat any of it, even a bite without broccoli in it.(He did eventually eat some, including the ham, which was awesome. But the next day when I asked if he wanted macaroni and cheese for dinner again he said, "not mommy's.")

So today, when I was planning a variation on a recipe that I think my mother made up-- a split baked potato topped with chicken and broccoli and blue cheese dressing (I substituted grated cheddar for the blue cheese because my husband dislikes blue cheese, an untenable position that I tolerate because I love him very much) and I was nosing around the internet for a more interesting broccoli preparation than my usual simple microwave steaming, when I came across this recipe. I told Nugget I was making "brocoli candy" and had him help me add the brown sugar.

I won't say that he loved it, yet, but he did eat two whole florets and professed to like it. I am hopeful that he will eat more next time, and may even learn to love broccoli without the brown sugar. And, importantly, Trent and I liked it. It's unusual but quite good. The original recipe on allrecipes included cayenne pepper, lemon juice, and garlic powder, which I left out. I also halved the broccoli while leaving the other quantities as is, and was happy with the proportions.

Nugget's Broccoli Candy

1/4 c. olive oil
2 T. brown sugar
1 tsp. dried oregano
1 tsp. dried thyme
salt to taste
1/2 lb broccoli florets

1. Preheat oven to 350 F.
2. Mix olive oil, brown sugar, and seasonings.
3. Pour oil mixture over florets in a large bowl and toss to coat.
4. Spread florets on baking sheet and bake about 15 minutes until slightly browned.

Serves 2 to 3 adults and a toddler.

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