The American Association of Orthodontists is a resource for parents to learn more about orthodontic treatments and provides general tips on how to achieve healthy, beautiful smiles, get braces-friendly recipes, and find an orthodontist near you by using the Find an Orthodontist Locator service. Why should you choose an orthodontist? Orthodontists receive an additional two-to-three years of specialized education beyond dental school to learn the proper way to align and straighten teeth.
Catherine is also a proud former “braceface” and smiles every day to prove it!
We understand how it is—you rush home after work or after a day running around doing errands. You’re trying to think of something new to make for your hungry family… but it seems like all the old dishes aren’t so appealing tonight. And if your kids wear braces, you’ll especially want to make sure they can enjoy what you make, without having to cook separate dinners.
Pamela and Brenda Waterman, the creators of Braces Cookbook: Recipes You and Your Orthodontist Will Love, share some of their recipes with the American Association of Orthodontists.
Here are some quick-to-make and tasty-to-eat selections—Cherry-Chicken Salad Bites and Moroccan Sweet-Pepper Chicken! They’re sure to be a delight for braces-wearing and non-braces-wearing family members alike.
Catherine Manabat is a guest blogger, writing on behalf of the American Association of Orthodontists.
CHERRY-CHICKEN SALAD BITES
1 (12.5-ounce) can (or 1¼ cups) cooked chicken
½ cup (about 3 ounces) dried cherries, presoaked in hot water for 10 minutes, then drained
½ cup (4 ounces) black-cherry yogurt
1 Tablespoon Mayonnaise
Drain the chicken and break it up into a medium-sized bowl. Add cherries, yogurt and mayonnaise. Stir together well. If you have time, let the mixture sit in the refrigerator for an hour to absorb the moisture and flavors.
This serves up nicely in tiny scoopfuls on ruffled red-leaf lettuce and is also excellent as a filling inside sliced miniature croissant rolls.
(From The Braces Cookbook 2 by Pamela Waterman and Amee Hoge)
What’s so cool about this dish? Dried cherries are now as easy to find in the grocery store as raisins, a trend that makes this variation on the regular chicken salad a simple yet delicious change of pace. Plus, when it’s time for those braces to come off, you can add ¼ cup of slivered almonds to give the dish some extra pizzazz. Need a gourmet touch? Chef Amee likes to add ¼ cup ground almonds and 1 to 2 teaspoons of dried mint leaves to add more color and texture to this scrumptious meal.
Peppers are at their peak in the summer, but the following flavorful, nutritious meal can satisfy a tender tooth any time of year. The Moroccan Sweet-Pepper Chicken is a wonderfully tender stir-fry to serve with white or brown rice. It may convince you to keep diced peppers (green, red, yellow and orange) in your freezer for spur-of-the-moment use. The sauce also uses ingredients you probably already have in your pantry. And if you’re out of sherry, no worries– the dish will still be just as good!
MOROCCAN SWEET-PEPPER CHICKEN
3 boneless chicken breast halves, boiled
3 cups (fresh or frozen, unthawed) sweet peppers, diced (any color)
For the sauce
1/3 cup orange juice
¼ cup soy sauce
¼ teaspoon ginger
1 Tablespoon sherry
1 Tablespoon vinegar
1 Tablespoon cornstarch
(Optional: ¼ cup sliced almonds)
In a large pot, boil the chicken breasts until very tender, about 1 hour. (This is a great task to do ahead of time while getting other things done in your life.) Shred the chicken on a cutting board and set aside.
In a Dutch oven or large covered frying pan, simmer the peppers in ½ cup water for 15 minutes. Add shredded chicken and keep on low heat.
In a small bowl, use a whisk to stir together all the sauce ingredients except the almonds. Pour the sauce over the chicken and pepper mixture and simmer the combination, covered, for 10 minutes. Serve over rice and, if desired, add the almonds on top for non-braces eaters. This recipe makes 6 to 8 servings.
(From The Braces Cookbook by Pamela and Brenda Waterman)
We’re sure your family will love the change of pace that these meals will bring to the table. If you want to add more braces-friendly fare to your recipe box, check out the ones posted on the AAO Web site.
Leave a comment to let us know what you think—we know you’ll probably come up with some great variations of your own! If you have any other braces-friendly recipes to share, please do!