Spinach, creme fraiche, gnocchi, Parmesan & pesto bake (page 142)

Practical Playtime / Jobs For The Kids

  • Measure crème fraiche.
  • Grate the grated cheddar with as much supervision as they need.
  • Measure pesto.
  • Zest the orange. Do this together quite a few times before letting kids do it themselves and always supervise.
  • Squeeze the orange. Explain to kids why they need to steer clear of any cuts or nicks on their fingers. 
  • Measure the juice.
  • Open the tin of tomatoes with as much supervision as they need. Jake started doing this at 4 years 6 months.
  • Wash and dry the spinach if necessary.



My Cooking With Kids Recipe Diary

Jake 6 years 5 months, James 3 years 11 months 


This was a perfect snatched five minutes at the end of a very busy day. Jake and James did all of the measuring and James did the mixing. I didn't have any crème fraiche, so we made a mixture of cream cheese and double cream and I mixed a little broccoli in as well as the spinach.


After a lot of my anxiety with James, he is eating wonderfully now and even leafy vegetables like spinach are no problem. It is such a joy. 'Delicious,' he said tonight, 'delicious Dada'. It was perfect, fresh tasting comfort food, exactly what this recipe set out to be. We made twice the recipe as I hoped to have some left for lunch the next day. But I put the baking dish on the table and we ate it all. 


Jake 4 years 5 months, James 1 year 9 months 

James picks out even the smallest bits of sliced spinach, and he now has a problem with the smooth green pesto puree.


Gnocchi can be chopped to a rough puree either by hand or by using the pulse button on a food processor, just don’t leave the motor running or you’ll end with a gluey mess, as with all pasta dishes.