Azmina’s Rainbow Rice
Prep time: 5-8 mins
Cook time: 20 mins
1 mug basmati rice
1 1⁄2 mugs cold water
1 tablespoon bouillon (stock) powder
1 teaspoon crushed garlic
1 teaspoon crushed ginger
pinch of turmeric
handful of frozen peas & sweetcorn
2 medium carrots, peeled & diced
1/4 head white cabbage, shredded
2 medium red peppers, chopped
drizzle of sweet chilli sauce and roughly chopped coriander leaves, to serve
Veg Portions / Serving: 2
Recipe donated by Azmina Govindji for Veg Power. Photography and recipe by Azmina.
A low-fat rice dish marbled with colourful vegetables that cooks effortlessly in the microwave. Turmeric adds yet another level of vibrancy to this rainbow rice. This is a great way to get the kids involved as they can help peel the carrots, dice the peppers (if appropriate), add the brightly coloured vegetables, stir the uncooked rice, and then decorate the top after cooking. The vegetables can be all shapes and sizes, no need to be super neat. You don’t need weighing scales, just household measures. A perfect accompaniment to grilled fish or chicken.
Rinse the rice in a bowl to remove any starchy powder around the rice – this will help you get nice separate grains.
Put rice and water into a large microwavable container with a lid. Add stock powder, garlic, ginger, turmeric and vegetables.
Stir, cover and place in the microwave over high setting for 18-20 minutes, or until cooked (stir once at around 15 minutes). Serve topped with sweet chilli sauce and coriander leaves.
Top Tip: Try simply adding their favourite vegetable to the flavoured rice at first, then begin to add more and more veg, so you ease the children in gently. Aim to get a rainbow of colours.
Kids who engage regularly with veg through veg-themed activities, such as arts and crafts, sensory experiences, growing and cooking are shown to be more likely to eat the veg they engage with. Encouraging kids to engage and play with veg is the handy first step to them developing a good relationship with veg and life-long healthy eating.
Kids in the kitchen
Get the kids rinsing the rice, pressing the microwave buttons, measuring the stock powder and spice, helping with some veg prep and adding the chilli sauce and coriander at the end.
While getting kids to interact with veggies for real and using their senses to explore them is best, encouraging hands off activities like arts & crafts, puzzles & games or at-home science experiments can be a great start, particularly for those who are fussier eaters or struggle with anything too sensory. Use these veg-themed activities as a stepping stone to interacting with the veg themselves. We have loads of crafty downloads here, puzzles here, and quirky science with veg here.
Once you feel your child is ready to engage a little more, you can show them how to explore the veg you have on hand with their senses, coming up with playful silly descriptions of how a veg smells, feels, looks, sounds and perhaps even tastes. Find ideas, videos and some simple sensory education session ideas to get you started here.
The moments before food is offered can be a perfect opportunity for engagement that can help make it more likely a child will eat it! Giving children a sense of ownership in the meal can make a big difference to their feelings going into it and the pride they take in it. You know your child best, but if you aren’t sure where to start, we have some fun and simple ideas for easy roles you can give them in the serving process over here.