Recipes On A Budget!

Let’s play Vegetable Hide & Seek!!!!

Friday, 25th March 2011

Let’s play Vegetable Hide & Seek!!!!

Levi waits for his take-out dinner πŸ™

As the main shopper and cook of our household I am growing very tired of the constant whingeing and whining from one child or another (that includes the HUSBAND!!!!) that they don’t like ‘this’ or they don’t like ‘that’ at meal times.

It’s quite literally doing my head in.

As a mother and wife I want to provide them with nutritionally sound meals that they enjoy, but this has become more than just a challenge.

In the last 6 years we have spent more money than I care to count up and put on stacks of weight due to consuming convenience & pre packaged foods. Why? Because it’s quick and because it’s easy.

I don’t like to cook, I’ve never considered myself to be anything more than a ‘hack’ in the kitchen and I was fresh out of new and interesting ideas to appease the hungry mob. So I decided it was time to ask for help and get some ‘home cooking lessons’.


A dear family friend was more than happy to step up to the plate and give me a few pointers.

The sauce spiked with vegetables...


My criteria:

It had to be within the budget.

It had to contain vegetables.

It had to be somewhat convenient.


So her suggestion was a Bolognese Sauce and we would use it to make up a large family lasagna. Hmmmmm YUM!

Now here comes the fun part….Not only did we create the most delicious tasting sauce known to mankind, we did a little blending of ‘this’ and some more blending of ‘that’ and before we knew it, the sauce was more vegetable than mince meat and there was no way of ever even knowing it!

That night I served up this delightful smelling homemade lasagna to the Monster Squad. Bare in mind that they had only ever eaten the prepackaged frozen variety before….. AND THEY LOVED IT!!!!

Even asked for seconds!!! So for the first time in years I had found something that all of them would eat without complaints! πŸ™‚

Now the kids were none the wiser but Brian knew I was up to something. The king of “I don’t eat veggies” was on to me and my sneaky plan to poison him with goodness….. He demanded to know what I had stashed in this ridiculously delicious meal…. So I let him have it…

Ahhh the secret hidden ingredients...


In that sauce I had hidden:

My massive bowl of blended vegetables!

* Carrots

* Zucchini

* Pumpkin

* Broccoli

* Mushrooms

* Onions

* Red & Green Capsicum



Yes that’s right folks the man who doesn’t eat his vegetables had admitted defeat and said he loved the lasagna!


That’s what I call SUCCESS!!!

Add the veggies in once the meat has browned.....


So now when I make up a batch of sauce I make up a monster sized pot of it. I use it in my lasagna, spaghetti bolognese, on Baked Potatoes and will try it with a mexican feel sometime in the future. It freezes perfectly and makes the evening meal convenient when the sauce is already prepared and ready to go!



Thank-you my dear family friend, I cannot wait for your next session of cooking ideas and advice! πŸ™‚


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    One comment
    1. eliz a buf

      how good is that???!!! i brown my finely chopped veggies very briefly before adding them to the main meat; the color blends a little better and the flavour sweetens a little, too. i find this adds easily into anything involving ground/minced meats; spaghettie/lasagne sauce, meatballs (some smashed lentils -canned is fine- work well in here too), tacos/enchiladas/burritos, chili, and i've even had luck with tuna casserole and adding a little into twice baked potatoes along with the cheese and finely chopped bacon. you'll have them whipped into nutritional shape in no time! xoxo

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