Cooking Rocks Challenge: Week 1 - Lunch Box Turkey Sushi

Filed under: Preschoolers, Nutrition: Health, Development/Milestones: Babies

Last week I introduced the Cooking Rocks Challenge, where my son, Nolan, and I will be cooking every recipe in Cooking Rocks - Rachael Ray 30-Minute Meals for Kids. Today I'll be bringing you the results of our first week of kitchen craziness.

We started off the Cooking Rocks Challenge with Lunch Box Turkey "Sushi" because Nolan loved the sound of the word "sushi." You basically wrap a tortilla around a bunch of healthy food and it resembles a piece of sushi. We tried it "by the book" but Nolan preferred a slight variation using plain flour tortillas. Here's how to do it:

Bring a potful of water to a boil then drop in a pouch of "boil in a bag" white rice and let it cook for 10 minutes. Pull the bag out with tongs and let it cool for another five minutes. Then open the bag and place its contents in a bowl. Take a spinach flour tortilla and warm it in the microwave - about 15 seconds. While the recipe called for a spinach tortilla we had to go to an upscale grocery store to find them. If you don't want to go through the hassle, simple flour tortillas will work fine.

Have your little chef do the following: spread 2-3 tablespoons of ranch dressing on the tortilla, then cover it with 2 large slices of turkey lunchmeat. Cover the turkey with 2 tablespoons of the rice. On top of the rice, arrange a small handful of bean sprouts, 1/4-inch wide slices of red bell pepper, and strips of provolone cheese in a line. One of the tips Rachael Ray offers is to give your child kid-safe scissors that they can use for cooking purposes. Nolan used his to cut the slices of cheese and bell pepper, and he enjoyed putting all the "pieces" together.

Help your child roll the tortilla up around the filling, and then you can slice the sandwich into 1-inch slices and arrange them on a plate (the recipe says 2-inches but smaller is better for little hands).

Did it take 30 minutes or less? Yup - Nolan was eating his sushi with four minutes to spare.

Nolan thought the Lunch Box Turkey Sushi was, in his words, "pretty good." I personally didn't like the ranch dressing. But we both really like a version I came up with: I substitute cream cheese for the ranch dressing, layer on the turkey slices, spread 2-3 tablespoons of cranberry sauce and add a handful of sprouts. We roll it up and slice it the same way. Still looks like sushi, only sweeter. Nolan's asked me to make it for his lunchbox every day. And he's made a song up over the name. That, I would say, is a winner.

Next up: Dinner with Tomato, Basil and Cheese Baked Pasta.

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AdviceMama Says:
Start by teaching him that it is safe to do so.