Once in a while the lovely people who deliver my groceries slip in a sample of something or other to tempt me into trying something new. I would say most of the time the samples haven’t convinced me to go out and buy the product, and sometimes they’ve been completely misjudged – the dog treats months after my dog died last year for example (they weren’t to know).
But then, last month, I got a free sample of Seeds of Change’s Quinoa & Flax Wholegrain & Red Rice, one of those pouches you throw in the microwave for two minutes. I tossed it in the cupboard with a half-hearted promise to myself to try it out.
A few days later, bored of making pasta for the kids again, I thought I’d give it a try. Well, cut to the chase – both kids loved it. I almost fell off my chair. My fussy eaters liking quinoa? I decided to go out and buy two more of the varieties in the range: Seven Wholegrains, and the Quinoa & Wholegrain Rice, both cost around £2.29. Again, the kids loved them.
I served them as a side, added them to burritos, and mixed them up in a chicken korma, all with positive results from the kids. Yes, they’re quick and easy, but also taste really good (I love them). But where these win, I think, is that they remove the barrier to cooking some of the other healthier grains like quinoa or flax seed for the family. Yes, quinoa is actually quite easy to make, but I think there’s a perception that it’s fiddly – these pouches take care of that.
Buoyed by the success of these I decided to try another brand, this time Jamie Oliver’s Incredible Curried Chick Peas and Sensational Sweet Chilli Spelt ( RRP of £2.29); these can be eaten hot or cold and were just as popular with the children. The sweet chilli one wasn’t too spicy.
As far as I can see, there are no nasties listed on the ingredients. Seeds of Change use all organic ingredients and Jamie Oliver’s versions boast of being free from unnecessary additives and bulking agents. If you’re not enamoured with using a microwave, you can also cook these on the stove for a few minutes.
Finding something both kids like to eat can be so mired in stress and frustration, it’s a real relief to find something new that ticks that box. I now keep a couple of these pouches in the cupboard for a quick alternative to pasta, rice or potatoes.