- Faculty Interview
- Recipe Ideas
What’s Cooking? Tips from Heilicher Chef Liz Kaplan
We sat down with Chef Liz Kaplan, Heilicher’s Head Chef, to see what she had to say about working at Heilicher and what she has been making in the kitchen. Check out her nutrition tips and her favorite healthy recipes for you to try at home.
What excites you most about being Heilicher’s Head Chef?
I really enjoy cooking for the kids and serving them nutritious Kosher foods. It is fun getting to know them and exposing them to new foods. You may not know, but 90% of our meals are made from scratch. Finding Kosher foods can be difficult, so I really enjoy the challenge of making things here in the kitchen myself. We end up making a lot of high quality nutritious food that I can tell the kids enjoy.
What should Heilicher parents to know about nutrition?
Be sure to offer good nutritional choices for your kids. The more you offer healthy options the more likely your kids are to try them. The other thing parents need to remember is that our bodies are wired to choose balance in our diets. Don’t panic if one day all your child eats is carbs or protein. Their diets tend to even out as they feel they need a certain food group. As long as you continue to offer nutritional choices, healthy eating habits will develop. Also, if you feel like you are stuck in a rut when it comes to healthy meal options, reach out to me or your community to see what other kids are eating. It is a great way to expand your repertoire of healthy meals and snacks.
Healthy Snacks for Home
Check out Chef Liz's favorite healthy snacks to accompany any meal or just on their own.
Quesadilla with Cheese and Scrambled Egg
Whether you love scrambled eggs or not, a great way to add protein to your typical cheese quesadilla is to add a scrambled egg. For kids who struggle with texture, this is an easy addition. Scramble an egg ahead of time, breaking the egg into small pieces. Add the scrambled egg to the quesadilla at the same time you put in the cheese. Serve it hot or cold with a side of veggies or fruit. It is an easy take along lunch and alternative to PB&J.
One of my favorite twists on traditional hummus is pumpkin hummus. Serve with celery, carrots, or pretzel crisps. It is great to have as an after-school snack or packed in a cold lunch.
Healthy Greens at Home
A healthy snack we enjoy at our house is sautéed Swiss chard. I like to choose Swiss chard with all white stems. This is important because they tend to be the sweetest. When cooking for kids, be sure to cook foods, especially vegetables, a little longer than what we adults are used to. This way food is softer and tends to be more appealing to kids. Cook the greens in a little olive oil along with minced garlic and salt. Sauté until tender and top it off with a squeeze of lemon. Enjoy as an after school snack or a side to any meal.
I love blueberry muffins. They are a bit sweet and can be customized to any liking. My suggestion for blueberry muffins is to take your go-to recipe and cut the sugar in half and substitute half the flour for almond flour. This will cut down on the sugar and add a little protein to your muffin recipe.
If you have questions about nutrition or need some fresh food preparation ideas, feel free to reach out to Chef Liz.
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