Just as changing the way you cook a vegetable can change its taste, switching how you slice or dice it alters its texture. And texture plays a huge role in the way youngsters feel about food. Through a child’s eyes, a spiralised courgette is an entirely different food to a sliced one! Being able to offer veg in different shapes is helpful if you’re weaning, too, as you can widen the range of textures your baby is happy to eat. Use them, too, to encourage a picky eater to play with his food: even if your toddler normally won’t touch a particular vegetable, he may be happy to accept it on his plate if it’s in a fun shape, and that’s a big step towards having a curious nibble one day soon. Add these gadgets to your kitchen collection…
The OXO 3-Blade Hand-Held Spiralizer gives courgettes, carrots, bell peppers and sweet potatoes a curly perm. Use it to make sweet potato curly chips – heat the oven to 200°C, spritz some oil on a baking tray, add spiralised sweet potato, and bake for about 35 minutes until crisp.
Veggies with crinkly edges are easier for babies to hold. To make carrot crisps, use the Davina Crinkle Cutter to cut carrot into thin strips, toss in 1 tsp olive oil and ½ tsp curry powder, and roast in a 200°C oven for 10-12 minutes.
Use Smiley Faces Cookie Cutters to cheer up your veg! To make a smiley-face pizza, shape a slice of aubergine with a cookie cutter before steaming it for 10 minutes and putting on top of a pizza.
Think your little one will never eat lettuce? Think again! The Davina Speedy Salad and Slaw Shredder chops it into a fine pile, for easy-to-munch veggie mini-strips.
The Chef’n FreshForce Potato Ricer doesn't just work on potatoes – it turns swedes, carrots, parsnips and cauliflower into soft, fluffy mash, too.
The Lakeland SharpPeel Julienne Vegetable Peeler takes seconds to turn carrots, pepper and celery into perfect sticks.
Turn veg into healthy, crispy toddler snacks with the Andrew James Rectangular Digital Food Dehydrator. Try it with thinly sliced courgette, dipped into rice wine vinegar, light olive oil and oregano.
£43.99, andrew jamesworldwide.com