Three two-year-olds, two school schedules, and one new house. And that was just September.
Not surprisingly, expanding the triplets' picky palates has fallen low on my list of priorities. That does not mean I don't care what they eat. But I have finally taken a harder line. No fruit until they at least try the main course. And definitely no cookies for kids who don't take a taste.
When I do hit the kitchen, I've been focusing on breakfast foods. The kiddos reliably eat yogurt and smoothies, but with big days of school ahead they need more to keep them going. The Dude is the easy one—his fave is "milk and Os." Bitty and Zeke steadfastly refuse to eat cereal in milk, and aren't that interested in the dry stuff anymore either.
While the bagel shop is a favorite destination for the crew, toasted bagels at breakfast are detested. And toasted bread is, well, toast. Challah gets us through the weekend, but the big breakfast winners in the house are nanny cake (aka banana bread) and mommy cake (chocolate zucchini bread).
The mom in me is thrilled that I've made a couple of relatively healthy quick breads that they like. But the baker in me gets bored making the same things all the time.
When I had three beyond-ripe bananas on the counter I knew it was time to try something different. Maybe with oats. Maybe even with some chocolate. Maybe, just maybe, not in a loaf pan.
The result: mommy bars (aka Banana Oat Chocolate Bars). At first Zeke eyed my new creation suspiciously. "Not mommy bars," he insisted. "Cake." In the end he couldn't resist the chocolate chips. After the first bite, he was asking for seconds.
Bitty, my other cake lover, took a look at it and shoved it into her mouth without any reservations. Then she shot me a cake-filled grin, enthusiastically proclaiming, "cakes!".
The Dude took a look. He let me put it on his plate. The he pushed it away, asking for his beloved "milk and Os." Zeke promptly procured his brother's portion.
Banana Oat Chocolate Bars
1 cup butter, softened
1 cup brown sugar
1 tsp vanilla
3 ripe bananas, mashed
¾ cup all-purpose flour
¾ cup white whole wheat flour
3 cups oats
1 tsp baking soda
1 tsp salt
2 tsp cinnamon
1 cup chocolate chips
Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Line a 9x13 baking pan with aluminum foil. Grease foil.
Cream butter and sugar together. Beat in the egg, vanilla, and banana. Add both flours, oats, baking soda, salt, and cinnamon. Stir with a spoon or spatula to combine. Add chocolate chips, and stir to distribute them evenly.
Spread the batter in the pan. Bake 20 to 25 minutes, until lightly golden on top, and a toothpick inserted comes out clean. Cool completely on a wire rack. Using the overhanging foil as handles, transfer the bars to a cutting board. Cut into desired number of squares.