Kids and Veggies. How to Foster a Love Affair (2)
This post is the second in a series. I am sharing different ways we have kept our kids excited and interested in fruits and vegetables.
What is it?
The boys LOVE this. We do, too. Whenever my boys accompany me to the grocery store they pick out a new fruit or veggie they would like to taste.
This is a very serious process.
They scour each bin in search for the strangest, most unique produce. Once they locate it they treat it as if it were a precious gem carefully carrying it back to the cart. “What about this one, mommy?” Both proud and curious.
As soon as we get home they are relentless in asking, “When do we get to eat it?” It’s usually soon.
Yesterday this is what they chose…
The bin labeled it dragon fruit. Good choice.
I told them we could eat it after dinner. Dinner came and went and they asked if they could have a piece of Halloween candy. I told them they could after we tried our dragon fruit. They accepted this as a good deal on their end.
Typically we wikipedia the new item and learn a bit about it before we eat it.
This is what we learned:
It is actually called a pitaya and it is a fruit of several cacti species. It is commonly known as a dragon fruit in Chinese. There are 3 varieties, 2 red and 1 yellow. They are native to Mexico, South America and Central America. They are also cultivated in many Asian countries, Hawaii, Australia and Israel. It is compared to a kiwi because the inside has many small edible black seeds.
Usually after viewing several pictures and learning about it the boys can’t wait to dig into it. The sit in anticipation as the knife meets the flesh.
It is a big moment. We dip four spoons into the soft innards and we all taste it at the same time.
It was a hit. Not overly sweet. Kind of a cross between a kiwi and a pear.
They never did ask for a piece of Halloween candy. Instead they went to bed with bellies full of dragon fruit.
Win for mom.
Note ~ you can buy dragon fruit at a local Asian market for half the price of a commercial grocery store.
Update: I almost forget to add the nutritional info. Here it is from this source:
Dragon fruits are high in antioxidants, which help to fight carcinogenic free-radicals from forming in the body. In addition, they are a good source of Vitamin C, and are rich in minerals, especially calcium and phosphorus. They are also low in calories and high in fiber, while the seeds are have high polyunsaturated fatty acids. Aside from its nutritional content, the fruit is also said to help excrete heavy metal toxins from the body and lower cholesterol and blood pressure. Dragon fruits are also known to be a natural laxative.
Click here to learn more about dragon fruit.