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    THE NIBBLE’s Gourmet News & Views

    Trends, Products & Items Of Note In The World Of Specialty Foods

    This is the blog section of THE NIBBLE. Read all of our content on TheNibble.com,
    the online magazine about gourmet and specialty food.

Archive for Kid Foods

PRODUCT: Zoku Ice Pop Maker

You can become the most creative glacier in town with the Zoku Quick Pop Maker from Williams-Sonoma.

It’s easy to create your own customized frozen pops, including cream-filled varieties, in as little as seven minutes.

Use your favorite juices and other beverages (coffee, tea, kefir, smoothies) or fresh fruit purées to make the gourmet pops of your dreams.

Designed to be very user friendly—quick freezing, easy release from molds, reusable plastic pop sticks that have drip guards—Zoku looks to be the best pop-making option we’ve seen.

Why should you give up storage space to a pop-making machine?

 

It’s easy to make gorgeous ice pops with
your favorite flavors and add-ins. Photo
courtesy Williams-Sonoma.

• You can make gourmet pops in the exact flavors you want, and express yourself artistically in flavors, colors and patterns. (One of our favorites is to freeze cocktail mixes into Margarita Ice Pops and savory Bloody Mary Mix ice pops. Alcohol doesn’t freeze well, but you can try a teaspoonful per pop.)

• You have something new and special to serve guests.

• Things you’d normally drink for health can be turned into pops—from pomegranate juice to probiotic peach kefir.

• You can control for dietary needs—reduced sugar, no sugar or kosher, for example—and allergies.

• Ice pops have fewer calories than ice cream and are fat- and cholesterol-free (unless you elect to make cream pops).

• It’s a fun way to teach the whole family that they can enjoy preparing their own food.

• And thanks to the plastic sticks, there’s no yucky wood flavor that we so dislike with commercial ice pops.

Find more of our favorite frozen treats, plus recipes, in our Ice Cream Section.

Comments

PRODUCT: Pink Princess Cupcakes

Like cupcakes? Have young daughters, nieces, grandkids? Pink Princess Cupcakes may be a festive activity for you.

The Pink Princess Cupcakes Kit is one of a series of cupcake mixes (along with Fancy Fairy and Magical Mermaid) that provides an adult-child baking-and-bonding opportunity.

There is unusual fun in making these cupcakes: A special blend of ingredients for both the cake and the icing magically changes the batter and frosting colors from white to pink when mixed (hot pink for the cake, pale pink for the frosting). This is sure to delight young participants, and was a treat for us older folks, too.

As far as baking goes, this is a good opportunity to demonstrate to kids how to use a mixer to combine wet ingredients (supplied by you) and the dry ingredients from the kit, and turn them into yummy cupcakes. The lavender paper tote box contains enough Pink Vanilla Cupcake Mix, Pink Princess Pink Vanilla Frosting Mix and Enchanted Confetti Sprinkles to make 12 cupcakes.

At $5.95 apiece, you can also use the totes as party favors. They’re available at KidsCookingShop.com.

 

Throw a Pink Princess Cupcake tea party.
Photo by Hannah Kaminsky | THE NIBBLE.

Although the icing was a bit sweet for us, kids will like it. And this product is all about the kids.

In fact, the Pink Princess Cupcakes Baking Kit is part of a series of products from Barbara Beery, bestselling children’s cookbook author and founder of Batter Up Kids Cooking.

Her latest Pink Princess cookbook, The Pink Princess Cupcakes Cookbook, has creative cupcake decorating ideas with beautiful full-page color photography. You don’t have to be a pastry chef; the decoration ideas are all within the reach of the typical mom. The volume serves as a “menu options book” to let your little princess pick out exactly what she’d like to have at her party.

  • Also check out the Pink Princess Cookbook and the Pink Princess Tea Parties.
  • If you want additional decorating ideas, possibly for another theme party, check out Ms. Beery’s Pink Princess Cupcakes Cookbook. Each of the recipes outlines a different theme—mermaid, fairytale and s’mores to name a few—but all are suited for little princesses.
  • Find more cupcake ideas in our Gourmet Cakes Section.
  • Comments

    PRODUCT: Caviar For Kids Gift Set

    It’s Earth Week, so how about some caviar to teach your kids about sustainability?

    Only in America—or perhaps wherever there are people with too much cash on their hands—would someone market a “Caviar Kid” kit. It seems so Hollywood.

    The kit is sold by Calilfornia Caviar, “Purveyors of Indulgence,” in San Francisco. According to the manufacturer, it’s:

    “A perfect way to make eating caviar fun for kids…spoon some crème fraïche into the puff pastry fish bowl and top with trout caviar for a fun, delicious and nutritious snack.”

    The brightly colored box includes trout caviar, a kid’s caviar spoon and napkin packed in a 100% recycled box that includes games and fun facts to teach your caviar kid about ocean conservation and sustainable seafood.

     

    caviar-kid-230

    Will your kid eat caviar? Here’s one way
    to find out. Photo courtesy CaliforniaCaviar.com.

    Another option, “Fish and Chips,” declares:

    “Sustainable seafood and ocean conservation at its best, this snack pack has sustainably raised Hackleback Sturgeon caviar, organic crème fraiche and Whale Tails organic corn chips, which donates 10% of proceeds to conserving Blue Whale breeding grounds.”

    Gosh, how about a can of sustainable tuna—pole-and-troll caught, no FADs (Fish Aggregation Devices)—for the kids, and send the caviar to us?

  • THE NIBBLE has lots of ideas for caviar lovers. Take a look at our Caviar Section, with recipes, Q&A and entertaining tips, plus our Caviar Glossary to help you roe, roe, roe your caviar boat.
  • Comments

    TOP PICK OF THE WEEK: Mad Hectic Oatmeal

    Mad Hectic Oatmeal is for people who don’t like a bowl of healthy oatmeal. And it’s for people who love it.

    Many people just don’t like plain oatmeal, although they buy into its health benefits. That’s why the best-sellers include the fruit-flavored, sugary instant oatmeals.

    Alas, those packets do not contain healthy food. They’re full of sugar, and many of the nutrients have been stripped in the processing.

    Mad Hectic Oatmeal provides a solution. Improving on the concept of those instant oatmeals, Mad Hectic Oatmeal is flavored and alluring. But it’s also organic oatmeal mixed with nutritious whey protein powder and flaxseed meal with Omega-3 fatty acids and lignans (which have antioxidants and fiber).

    Antioxidant, nutritious and heart-healthy sesame seeds are also added, topped off with whole freeze-dried berries, nuts and some cane sugar. It emerges hot from the microwave in just 60 seconds. That’s fast and tasty oat nutrition for your mad hectic life (and for you folks who have it easy, too).

    Mad Hectic Oatmeal is more like hot pudding (think Indian pudding) than hot cereal. With fruit and nut combinations—and chocolate oatmeal—you’ll be feeling your oats soon after (translation: you’ll be energetic and playful).

     

    strawberry-230

    Strawberry Pecan Oatmeal lets you feel your
    oats in a delicious new way. Photo by
    Hannah Kaminsky | THE NIBBLE.

    Flavors include Almond Pecan, Raspberry Almond, Red Raspberry and Strawberry Pecan plus the very kid-friendly varieties: Chocolate Raspberry and French Chocolate. Read the full review below, including the health benefits of oatmeal, to see why you should make Mad Hectic Oatmeal part of your daily meal plan.

  • Read the full review to see how we enjoyed the flavors, and discover the health benefits of oatmeal.
  • Comments

    VALENTINE’S DAY: Gifts For Kids

    valentine-penguins-ps

    How cute are these ganache-filled penguins?
    And more delicious than most chocolate.
    Photo courtesy BurdickChocolate.com.

     

    The kids on your Valentine’s Day list will be happy with just about anything that’s chocolate. It’s easy to pick up a gift at the drug store or even the supermarket.

    But if you have a discriminating child—or you’d like to cultivate one—take a look at our Valentine’s Day gifts for kids.

    You’ll find the best:

  • Heart-shaped cookies and brownies from Eleni’s Cookies
  • Browniepops on a stick
  • Chocolate peanut butter delights from Jer’s Handmade Chocolates
  • Burdick Chocolate’s adorable chocolate mice and penguins (see photo)
  • The Valentine’s Day version of black and white cookies
  • They’re pink and white, of course, and inscribed with love messages (Kiss Me, Be Mine).

    Comments

    VALENTINE’S DAY: With Love From Mickey Mouse

    mickey-mouse-230

    M-I-C-K-E-Y chocolate gifts are fun.
    Photo courtesy Leonidas.com.

     

    You don’t have to be a kid to adore this Mickey Mouse Assortment of Belgian chocolates from Leonidas—but what kid wouldn’t be thrilled to get one?

    The retro keepsake gift box contains 16 pieces of chocolate embossed with Mickey’s smiling face, in four different flavors:

  • Milk chocolate filled with caramel flan
  • Marble chocolate filled with a hazelnut praliné ganache
  • White chocolate filled with hazelnut praliné and pieces of biscuits (cookies)
  • Dark chocolate filled with hazelnut praliné
  • Visit Leonidas.com or phone 1-800-900-CHOC.

    Do you think Minnie will be getting a box for Valentine’s Day?

    Comments

    TIP OF THE DAY: Sugar-Free Jigglers

    jello-jigglers

    Make Diet Jello-O a fun diet food with Jello-O
    Jigglers molds. Photo courtesy Kraft Foods.

     

    Our next-to-last diet tip for Healthy Food Month at THE NIBBLE:

    If you’ve ever made Jell-O brand Jigglers for kids—Jell-O poured into egg-size molds that are particularly popular at Easter—those molds make colorful and tasty diet food when you fill them with Sugar-Free Jell-O, and are a treat any time of the year.

    Choose your favorite flavors and make up a batch—we love cranberry, strawberry banana, orange, lemon and lime. You can serve the eggs whole or cut them with an egg slicer.

    If you don’t have a mold, you can prepare the Egg Jiggler recipe in a 9″x13″ pan and then cut shapes with cookie cutters.

    Serve Sugar-Free Jiggers with fruit, yogurt and cottage cheese, for light meals, snacks or dessert. Fun food takes the sameness out of dieting; and at just 10 calories a serving, Sugar-Free Jell-O is a caloric bargain.

  • To buy the Jigglers mold: There’s a plain egg plus five fancy versions, from footballs to racing cars. Consider making low-calorie snacks for the kids, as well. ($3.50 each)
  • The Jigglers recipe is usually on the carton, but here’s the recipe: Use vegetable oil or PAM to barely moisten the insides of the molds; wipe with a paper towel. To 1 package (8 serving size) or 2 packages (4 serving size) JELL-O Sugar-Free Gelatin Dessert, stir 1-1/2 cups boiling water (no cold water). Stir at least 2 minutes until completely dissolved (we use a whisk). Pour into measuring cup with pour spout. Using a funnel, carefully pour gelatin into mold through the fill holes until each egg is filled just to the top of the mold. Refrigerate at least 3 hours.
  • Find more of our favorite diet foods in our Diet Nibbles Section.
  • Comments

    PRODUCT: Caring Candies’ Sugar-Free, Kosher & Tasty Treats

    kid-lollipops-230

    All-natural, sugar-free lollipops from
    Caring Candies taste as good as they look.
    Photo courtesy Caring Candies.

     

    Love candy but can’t have sugar? On a diet but need sweet treats?

    Caring Candies is the new sugar-free line in town (it’s imported from South Africa). It’s sweet stuff for people who can’t have regular sugar.

    The sugar-free candies are excellent, with beautiful colors and no off flavors (they’re not as sugary as regular candy, which is just fine in our book).

    There are delicious lollipops for kids and hard candies (bonbons) for adults, including “sours” for both.

    The line is diabetes-friendly, tooth-friendly, all-natural and certified kosher.

  • Read our review of Caring Candies sugar-free candy.
  • Find more sugar free candy and chocolate in our Diet Nibbles Section.
  • Comments

    TOP PICK OF THE WEEK: Milk & Krunchies “Adult” Rice Krispies Treats

    djam-230

    DJ AM’s Toffee Mix, the late DJ’s favorite
    flavor. Photo by Hannah Kaminsky | THE
    NIBBLE.

     

    Somewhere along the line, the original Kellogg’s Rice Krispies Treats recipe got corrupted. We have eaten some god-awful “gourmet” versions of Rice Krispies Treats—or at least, eaten half a bite before seeking out the nearest waste basket.

    We figured that if [names of well-known stores withheld for the sake of good public relations] put them on the shelves, they had to be good. We would like to introduce these retailers—and every retailer—to Milk & Krunchies, a company that knows how to do it right.

    As you can guess, when the charming box of pretty gourmet rice crispy treats arrived from Milk & Krunchies (the revised spellings steer clear of Kellogg’s trademark), we did not rush to devour them. But once we began, we couldn’t stop. These delicious updates of the classics, in basic and three flavor, with more on the way, are classy snacks and gifts.

  • Join us as we revisit Rice Krispies Treats, now a crispy adult treat that you may elect to share with deserving children—if you feel you can spare a bite. Read the full review.
  • Find more of our favorite cookies and snacks.
  • Comments

    NEW PRODUCT: Annie’s Homegrown Mac & Cheese & More



    Parents who insist on the best for their children have two new choices in the popular all-natural Mac & Cheese from Annie’s Homegrown.

  • Lower-Sodium Mac & Cheese presents the classic kids’ favorite with 25% less sodium than the leading brands.
  • 5-Grain Elbows & White Cheddar blends durham wheat with four ancient whole grains: amaranth, kamut, quinoa and spelt. It contains 8g or more of whole grains per serving, an it’s also USDA-certified organic.

  • Our investigative adult palates preferred the slightly more sophisticated taste of the 5-Grain variety, but we’re betting the nuances will be lost on kids. They’ll only note that the 5-Grain is white, not orange. Try the tip from Annie’s Homegrown to substitute yogurt for the milk for a tangier taste.

    Annie’s Homegrown has also launched new Organic Cheddar Snack Mix Bunnies: crunchy Cheddar bunny crackers, buttery bunny crackers and pretzels, with a light seasoning of Organic Valley Cheddar cheese. Visit Annies.com to learn more.

     

    snack-mix-230

    Save some for the kids! A favorite snack mix, USDA-certified organic. Photo by Hannah
    Kaminsky | THE NIBBLE.

  • See more of our favorite kids’ foods.

  • Comments

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