A mother of three, Annabel Karmel is the UK’s best-selling author on feeding babies and children. She is an expert in devising tasty and nutritious meals for children without the need for parents to spend hours in the kitchen. Annabel has written 24 books on feeding babies, children and families and sold over 4 million books worldwide.  This year marks the 20th anniversary of Annabel’s first book, the Complete Baby & Toddler Meal Planner which has become the authoritative guide on feeding babies and is regularly in the top five cookery titles.

Annabel’s Beefburgers

Making your own healthy ‘junk food’ is one way to encourage fussy eaters to eat better quality food! Adding tomato chutney to burgers gives them a delicious flavour and the grated apple makes them moist and really tasty. My children love this beefburger recipe. Serve them on their own or in a bun with some salad and ketchup or some oven-baked chips. They are also great cooked on the barbecue in the summer.

Prep 8 minutes; cook 10 minutes; makes 6 burgers, suitable for freezing

Ingredients

1 medium red onion, chopped

3 tbsp sunflower oil

1 garlic clove, crushed

½ tsp thyme leaves

2 slices white bread, crusts removed

250 g (9 oz) minced beef

3 tbsp tomato chutney (or you could use tomato relish)

Salt and freshly ground black pepper

1–2 tbsp flour, for dusting

Method

Sauté the onion in 1 tablespoon of sunflower oil for 5–6 minutes, until soft.

Add the garlic and thyme and cook for 1 minute.

Tear the bread into pieces and put in a food processor with the onion mixture and blitz together.

If you want a really smooth texture, pulse all the ingredients together in the food processor for a few seconds. If not, combine all the ingredients in a bowl and season to taste.

Form the mixture into 6 burgers using flour-dusted hands.

Fry the burgers in the remaining oil for 4 to 5 minutes on each side over a medium-to-low heat. If you fry over a high heat, because of the sugar in the tomato chutney the burgers have a tendency to burn.

Alternatively cook the burgers under a pre-heated grill.

Serve in a bun with lettuce and tomato.

To freeze, line a baking tray with cling film and place the uncooked burgers on it. Cover with another sheet of cling film and freeze until solid. Remove burgers from tray and store in a re-sealable bag or box.

 

Summer Flapjacks

The oats in these incredibly moreish flapjacks give a slow energy release for your child and the dried fruit is full of fibre. They will keep children going on busy days. These are also fun for children to make themselves.

Prep 5 minutes; cook 35 minutes; makes 12 bars

 

Ingredients

85g butter

90g brown sugar

55g golden syrup

100g rolled oats

30g Rice Krispies

¼ tsp salt

40g desiccated coconut

30g chopped dried apricots (ready to eat)

30g cranberries

30g raisins

40g chopped pecans (optional)

Method

Preheat the oven to 170°C/325°F; Line a 20cm square tin with baking parchment, with the parchment coming up the sides; put the butter, sugar and golden syrup in a large saucepan; heat gently, stirring occasionally, until the butter and sugar have melted; Remove from the heat and mix in the remaining ingredients.

Spoon into the prepared tin and press out in an even layer (a potato masher is useful for this!) Bake for 25 minutes, until golden around the edges; cool completely, then lift out of the tin and cut into 12 small bars; you may need to store these in the fridge.

Quick & Easy Weaning

For more delicious, nutritious time-saving puree recipes, check-out Annabel’s brand new Quick & Easy Weaning Recipes book, out on 19th June (Ebury Press). From ‘Anabel’s Essential Guide to Feeding Your Baby & Toddler’ available on iTunes