One of the reasons I love children's parties is the food. All those sausage rolls, crisps, biscuits, cakes, sandwiches, pastries, doughnuts and similar snack food is all just too tempting. One children's party equates to around three days' worth of calories. Still, at least trying to keep up with the kids during the games is a great way to burn a few thousand calories, so I'm sure it all evens out by the end.
But increasingly many parents are wondering whether it's possible to improve the food a little, especially during the summer months when there's so much gorgeous fruit and healthy stuff about. Is it really possible to get kids excited about eating fruit and healthy stuff at parties, rather than stuffing their faces with enough calories to keep a small country going for a week and a half?
Indeed it is possible, and in today's fruity post I'm going to offer up a few easy suggestions for you to try next time you're faced with the challenge of keeping a couple of dozen children fed, happy and enjoying themselves whilst avoiding the sausage rolls and crisps. Super Summer Smoothies The first idea is to create some smoothies. These are really quick and easy and can be done 'to order' almost. Whip up a few smoothies just before the kids are ready to sit down and grab some food, and they'll really enjoy these. For the summer smoothies just grab a heap of summer berries, either frozen or fresh will do.
Throw them in the smoothie maker or blender and then add a little honey and some milk. Whip it all up and there you go - some really sweet tasting smoothies that look bright and colourful. Pour the smoothies into some party cups, maybe add a straw, and you have the perfect recipe for a healthy, energy giving, fun party drink that's also filling. Fantastic Frozen Fruitpops If you have plenty of freezer space then a great idea for the summer months, especially if you're having an outdoor party, is to make fruit juice lollies. Using either fruit squash or, for a much nicer taste, some freshly squeezed fruit juices, pour into lollypop moulds and pop in the freezer the day before the party. For an extra touch, and some small pieces of chopped fruit into the juice.
Another great touch is to make up three different coloured fruit juices - red (strawberry), orange (orange - naturally) and green (apple or kiwi). Then pour in the first squash to about a third full and put the moulds in the freezer. Once frozen, add the orange juice so that the lolly moulds are two-thirds full, and finally after that's frozen add the green. Traffic light lollies! Made with fresh fruit, they not only taste great, but they're really healthy too. Kids love them! Fun Fruit Fondue Here's a great idea that the adults will love too! Stick a chocolate fondue in the middle of the table, and then lay out lots of bowls of fruit that can be picked up on fondue forks and dunked in the gooey chocolate! Bananas are really great for this, as are kiwis, strawberries and oranges.
Although this includes chocolate, it's still reasonably healthy, and tastes brilliant. The children will almost certainly get in a mess, so this one's really more suited to outdoor summer parties, (or parties held at other people's houses!) Summer is a great time to get outside for parties, and it's a great time to enjoy the tastiest seasonal fruit and berries. There are lots of great party recipes for kids, and these ideas are just the beginning. Encouraging children to eat more healthily, even at a party, needn't mean spoiling the fun at all. Kids generally do like fruit, it's just the presentation that can be less enticing, but a party is the perfect time to have more fun with fruit!