With the kids on holiday, and constantly ravenous, how do you encourage them to eat fruit and not crisps and sweets? With voracious appetites and constant hunger, itâ€™s better to eat something healthy, so fruit is ideal grazing food â€“ if you pick the right types and varieties.
Good flavour and sweetness is what keeps children interested â€“ the irresistible fruit championed by the Good Fruit Guide! Here are some suggestions of delicious fruit available now, with consideration for size, convenience and preparation as they rush through the kitchen.
Apples: All retailers sell Kids size small apples. Gala and Pink Lady are the sweetest; Jazz is the crunchiest; Smitten has a great texture (though only in Waitrose); and for those that like a slight tang, try new season Discovery or Braeburn.
Pears: Crispy pears make a great snack and there are several that come in small sizes: Rocha from Portugal is a great all-rounder, while new season Conference is a satisfying munch, if not the most flavoursome. Forelle from South Africa is also an attractive, crisp pear, but coming to an end soon.
Bananas: These are the obvious fruit for children, though an interesting variant is the small â€˜fingerâ€™ banana or Bananito from Costa Rica in Asda and M&S (though the Apple banana from Uganda is much sweeter, if you can find them in ethnic stores).
Grapes: Children love grapes especially when they are sweet. Sweetness can be a bit hit and miss with the standard varieties, but Crimson red grapes are pretty consistent, and green varieties that have developed a yellowish straw colour should be good. Otherwise, look on punnet labels for newer varieties such as:
- Green: Stella Bella, Timpson, Princess, Melissa, Krissy
- Red: Crimson, Sweet Celebration, Timco, Magenta
- Black: Midnight Beauty, Sable
Mandarins: While not associated with the summer so much, the current mandarins on sale are actually very tasty. Children may prefer the sweeter, softer varieties such as Clemenor, Or, Orri, Tangold and Temple, but the Nadorcott, with its depth of flavour and tang of acidity, is also very sweet. Nova is another wonderful variety, but harder to peel and with more dense flesh.
Kiwis: The yellow-fleshed Sungold kiwi has a smooth skin, so is easy to eat without peeling, and has a wonderful, tropical flavour.
Plums: There are many plum varieties on sale, but they generally need to be ripened well before eating. However, the English plum season is underway with sweet, soft varieties that can be gobbled-up with ease: Victoria, Jubileum, Reeves Seedless, etc. If you are lucky, you may still be able to find honey-sweet greengages which are guaranteed to satisfy.
Blackberries: Why not go blackberrying along the country hedgerows? Late August and September is the time to find these wonderfully sweet and tasty fruit.
Â©Good Fruit Guide. Recommendations on fruit varieties and types with the very best taste are personal to the editor of Good Fruit Guide, and do not attempt to be exhaustive or supported by verifiable consumer research. The highlighting of fruit with the very best taste in the opinion of the editor is not intended as a judgement on the taste of varieties and types of fruit not mentioned.