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Nursery Tea suggestions please

(17 Posts)
bubble99 Thu 10-Mar-05 00:14:42

DH and I have recently opened a daycare nursery (another one due to open in April). I trained as a cook many years ago before starting nurse training and am now jojnt owner/chief cook and bottlewasher for our nursery. Both of our DS's have been to nurseries in the past where the food seemed to be an afterthought - white bread cheese sandwiches, hula hoops and a doughnut on a regular basis. All of the fresh ingredients I use for our nursery meals are certified organic and we're trying to provide the children with a varied, balanced and interesting menu.

I need some suggestions for the 4pm meal which we want to be a "high tea" type thing ie. more sustantial than just a sandwich. All of the food is cooked by me from scratch - no processed foods or frozen (except peas, sweetcorn and ice cream.) As some parents are booking afternoon sessions I want to make sure that their children get as substantial a meal as those who get a lunch in the morning session.

Any ideas for "tea". Soups seem to go down well and yesterday a sausage and mixed bean casserole with coucous. Bear in mind that I have to be able to find organic supplies for any fresh ingredients.

HuskyGirl Thu 10-Mar-05 12:26:20

hi bubble

Firstly congrats on opeing your nursery, what a drawnout and stressful process! At the nursery i used to work in the children used to love pitta bread as an alternative to sandwiches, good from the multicultural aspect with Ofsted too. I suppose to make it more filling you could put chicken in it, or even get the older children to put their own fillings in from a bowl. Garlic bread with something on the side goes down well too. Hope this helps. Hugs to Elijah

HandbagAddiction Thu 10-Mar-05 12:41:43

Just trying to think of the things that our nursery - whose menu I think is really good and where all the food is cooked freshly on-site every day - provide at 4pm. (Their main meal is at lunchtime) Off the top of my head:

Home-made pizzas - bread, loads of tomato sauce base, cheese and ham
Vegetarian 'sausage' rolls
Minestrone soup with pasta pieces in it
Jacket potatos with baked beans and cheese
Corn on the cob
Various home-made sandwiches (chicken, tuna, cream cheese, etc.)
Pita bread wraps with various fillings

For puddings there is always fresh fruit - either pureed or chunks depending on the age of the children and/or yoghurt. Not a crisp, doughnut or biscuit in sight!

That's all I can think of for now, but if I remember, I'll have a look at the menu sheet tonight and post some more things tomorrow!

bundle Thu 10-Mar-05 12:44:59

eggy bread!

KatieMac Thu 10-Mar-05 19:37:52

Pasta with egg,cheese & tuna
Pasta with Homemade tomato salsa
Sweet Potatoe Pie
Cheese & Potato Pie

Toasties....(hamemade bread)various fillings eg. Peppers/tomatoes/onion
cheese & tomatoe
Sweetcorn & cheese

I'll keep thinking

helsi Thu 10-Mar-05 20:07:20

how about a healthy organic shepherds pie?

milge Thu 10-Mar-05 20:10:29

Macaroni cheese, cauliflower cheese, beans on toast(wholemeal), make your own pizzas ( various toppings in bowls to be added by kids), baked potatoes and tuna/sweetcorn/cheese/beans/
AK's cherubs couscous
pasta and various sauces
thats all i can remember from my dt's nursery food list.

bundle Thu 10-Mar-05 20:11:04

wraps

Bozza Thu 10-Mar-05 20:14:44

Scrambled egg on toast
Jacket potatoes with cheese
Cauliflower cheese

maisystar Thu 10-Mar-05 20:18:53

ds loves flower toast.

butter a slice of bread and put on abaking tray, then use a flowere cutter(or any shape) to cut the middle out, put the middle on the baking tray too. then crack an egg into the middle and cook at 200c for 6-7 mins.

you can then dip the flower shaped toast in.

FairyMum Thu 10-Mar-05 20:19:20

I want my children in your nursery! Sounds great!

bubble99 Thu 10-Mar-05 20:57:35

Some great suggestions, thankyou

We've made pizzas a couple of times, the kids (we've got the grand total of 3 at present, but we've only just opened) loved it. I was in hospital at the time but DH dropped off the flour, yeast etc with a recipe card and left our deputy manager to it. By her own admission she's not a "foodie" but I think she had more fun than the littlies!

Once a week is "world food day" where we feature food from around the world, this ties in with songs, stories and national dress etc for the featured country. Next week is Mexico so fajitas (sp?) seem like a good idea. I agree that children seem to like finger foods that they (and their clothes) can get involved with.

Does anyone know if chickpeas are classed as 'nuts?' We have the standard 'nut free' food policy but I remember reading somewhere that chickpeas are technically nuts. Any ideas?

Thanks HuskyGirl for Elijah's hug. He's doing well and has gained 5 ounces this week so at 3 weeks old he's 1lb past his birthweight. The nursery has been a great distraction from our grief, I'm going in for a couple of hours a day to cook (we've only got afternoon children at the moment) and I can hand Elijah over to one of the staff while I get on with things.

Too true about it being a long drawn out and stressful process It's taken two years exactly from deciding to do it to opening with endless planning applications in between. The OFSTED registration process was the only straightforwrd thing. In the middle of this I became pregnant with twins (family planning not being one of our strongpoints). We're now in the scary period for a new business when we've got more staff than children and bills rolling in but we knew this would be the case.

Oh dear I've rambled a bit here haven't I ?! Keep the food sugggestions coming and thanks again

Gem13 Thu 10-Mar-05 21:13:46

I know best friend's brother who has been advised never to eat a peanut can't eat chickpeas so presume it is a nut.

Juliehafrancis Fri 11-Mar-05 11:35:25

Oooo good luck. I was going to suggest fajita's even before reading your last message as they are the kind of food that the children can get involved in. My little girl loves it.... I cut some chicken into strips and cook in a little mix a mexican seasoning and add some strips of peppers, onions, carrots, courgettes (any vegetable that can be cut up into strips would do)
I have guacomole on the side and serve it with tortilla's (you can definetely get them organically or you can cook them yourself.. I have a fab recipe so cat me if you would like it)

Other ideas :-

Chicken and pumpkin risotto
Fish pie
Italian meatballs in home made tomato sauce and pasta
Chicken and vegetable curry
Noodles and stir fried vegetables with perhaps pork or chicken
Bean and Pasta soup
Mini roast
Home - made chicken fingers
Any casserole ... Pork and apple, chicken and tomato, beef and vegetable
Bolognese
Paella
Frittata's
Pancakes

Please CAT me if you would like any of the recipe's.

Well done on doing such a good job.. I think it's so good that there are people like you out there trying to serve our chidren good and healthy food.

Jules x

welshmum Fri 11-Mar-05 11:56:04

Home-made fishcakes
Roast potato wedges with tomato salsa

Bubble - all the best with your new venture - having been thinking of you x

sweetmonkey Fri 11-Mar-05 12:01:03

without meaning to hikack Juliehafrancis would you be able to give me the recipes for
Chicken and vegetable curry
Bean and Pasta soup
if you dont mind please.much appreciated
thanks

grumpyfrumpy Fri 11-Mar-05 12:42:17

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

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