I was thinking about making some more ‘dinner on a stick’ meals for the kids as they love sliding the little chunks off the stick or biting them straight off (and sometimes assembling the kebabs themselves). As my kids also love tortellini (little filled pasta parcels), I decided to mix some shop-bought tortellini with a couple of less familiar foods, mozzarella and roast red peppers from a jar, in the hope that they would try them. I also added olives (always a winner in our house). For our grown up version I mixed up the mozzarella with pesto and lightly grilled a few cherry tomatoes. The meal worked out as about £3.60 in total and took 15 mins to prepare.
You can vary what you put on your kebab sticks (you can find metal or disposable wooden ones from supermarkets and some pound shops) – cheddar cheese or grilled halloumi cheese, pasta (penne pasta is good to slide on), other veg (e.g. broccoli, carrots, courgette, mushrooms, potatoes, asparagus, avocado), sausages, prawns, chunks of fish, chicken, tofu, falafel. Anything that can slide on to a stick! Also feel free to use a little sauce to add more flavour e.g. pesto as mentioned above, sweet chilli sauce (not spicy if you use sparingly) or bbq sauce. If you mix foods that you know your kids like (or let them choose some) with one or two that they have never tried or are unsure about, the novelty of eating a kebab may be enough to tempt them!
My kids were a little apprehensive about trying the mozzarella and roast peppers but once the tortellini and olives were gone they couldn’t resist picking up a small bit with the tip of the kebab stick (only once I should add) and attempting to get it in to their mouth before falling off – so that is a small victory! Other novel eating ideas are using chopsticks (even with just a selection of finger food), eating from a cup (see my 7 minute noodles in a cup recipe here https://katielovescooking.wordpress.com/2014/11/02/kids-favourite-7-minute-noodles-in-a-cup/) or using a larger than normal fork or spoon.
Tortellini kebabs (makes 7-8 sticks – enough for 2 adults and 2 kids)
1/2 pack tortellini, cooked (normally only takes 4 mins)
3 roast peppers from a jar, chopped
32 olives (any kind)
1 mozzarella ball, cut in to chunks (optional – mix with pesto for extra flavour)
Optional – cherry tomatoes, either as they are or lightly roasted in hot oven for 10 mins (turning once)
Divide the ingredients (and mix them with sauce if you fancy). Slide them on to the kebab stick as pictured. Serve! Add some rice or salad alongside the meal if you are extra hungry.