Ever since I figured out that something as simple as giving my kids a tiny side dish of maple syrup for dipping would inspire them to eat serving after serving of roast butternut squash I knew that I had stumbled onto something big. Of course not every kid is going to love every vegetable, so you just have to experiment until you find something that works. Sometimes just a sprinkle of this, a dash of that, or simply preparing vegetables in a new way can make the difference between them being eaten or neglected on the plate.
For Kenya's birthday party this year my menu consisted of Rice Cooker Mac & Cheese, Chicken Noodle Soup, and fresh fruit salad (all at Kenya's request) and I wanted to make a side dish that the kids and adults alike would also enjoy. No easy feat since I knew there were a few picky eaters in the mix. After roasting an array of veggies I tossed them with a zingy, maple syrup-sweetened vinaigrette to lightly coat every bite. Healthy and light, filling enough for the adults yet alluring and sweet enough that the kids would give it a try, this Roasted Veggie Salad turned out special.