Monday: Toad In The Hole

Ingredients: 250g plain flour, 4 eggs (lightly beaten), 300ml milk, olive oil, 8 sausages (more if needed!)

1. Put oven to 220C/200 fan. Sift the flour into bowl or food processor and add the eggs, milk, season and whisk till smooth (about 2 mins)
2. Put 1 tsbp of olive oil in a frying pan over a medium heat and when hot, add sausages and move around now and then for about 5 minutes.
3. Put a good drizzle of olive oil into a medium dish and put into oven for 5 minutes. Take out and add the sausages then pour over the batter and put back in oven for about 20-25 minutes, until puffed up and golden.

How to serve this meal to your child

Beginner:‘My child refuses any new meals’

Cook for yourself and reheat leftovers and serve alongside your child’s usual meal the next day or you could offer it as a small starter whilst they are waiting for their meal.  The great thing about this approach is that you are not cooking specifically for your child, you are giving them leftovers from a meal that you would have cooked anyway, so straightaway there is LESS expectation and pressure.  It’s about creating easy opportunities to widen your child’s food list.

Intermediate eater:‘My child may try this new dish but I’m not sure at this stage’

Choose a day when you can eat together.  Offer other components your child usually eats so there is no pressure.  For example, serve mashed potato or fries with the toad in the hole with beans.  It doesn’t matter if your child doesn’t touch the new meal, it is all about your child getting used to seeing new food and taking it in and also seeing you eat it to give them confidence for future meals.

Advanced eater: My child eats most things I give them and is not phased by new food.

Serve new meal and if they unexpectedly do refuse it, the best advice is not to panic and don’t feel bad.  It’s just one meal. Say non-confrontational words such as ‘you don’t have to eat anything you don’t want to’ and let them work it out for themselves.

Grace Willis