BestBites: Nanny Rosey, BestStart Pukuatua


BestBites: Nanny Rosey, BestStart Pukuatua

Roseanne Harris, affectionately known as Nanny Rosey, is the centre cook at BestStart Pukuatua. With 11 years of dedication to our tamariki, Roseanne has a true passion for providing the very best for them.

“I love working with children; that is where my passion lies. It’s all about the children. The smiles on their faces as they sit around the table, asking for seconds and hearing them say, ‘That was delicious Nanny Rosey!’ - that’s what keeps me going.” Roseanne shares.

 BestStart Pukuatua has been awarded Gold in the Healthy Heart Award by the New Zealand Heart Foundation. This award recognises ECE centres across New Zealand who are actively dedicated to providing heart-healthy meals and programmes to children. “The journey towards achieving the gold Healthy Heart Award was a significant milestone for me and my team,” Roseanne reflects. “It was a long journey, but together with my colleagues, we achieved it. My success was receiving that gold Healthy Heart Award and proudly displaying it for all to see.”

 Her approach to introducing new foods to children involves patience, encouragement and creativity. “Lots of encouragement and not giving up. Retrying the food in different ways over and over again.” she explains.

 A fan favourite at BestStart Pukuatua is Roseanne’s famous veggie pasta bake - packed with loads of hidden veggies and nutrition, ‘The children will often ask for it,” Roseanne explains.

“Nanny Rosey has a passion that allows us as a team to really support our children with their nutrition needs all day, every day,” Centre Manager Amanda Woywode reflects. Through her passion and commitment, Roseanne inspires her colleagues and nurtures the wellbeing of the children at BestStart Pukuatua, laying the foundation for lifelong healthy eating habits.

Nanny Rosey's Famous Veggie Pasta Bake


  • 1 x 500g packet of pasta, vegetable or wholemeal is the best choice
  • 2 x tablespoons of butter, melted
  • 2 x tablespoons of flour
  • 1 x teaspoon of crushed garlic
  • 2 x cups of milk (can be substituted for plant based milk)
  • 1 x cup of cheese (can be substituted for plant based cheese or alternative)
  • 2 x potatoes
  • 1 x kumara
  • 1/4 pumpkin
  • 1/4 broccoli
  • 1/4 cauliflower 

N.B - you can substitute any of the vegetables above, even frozen vegetables work!


  • Boil your pasta on the stove as per packet instructions
  • Make your sauce - do this by melting down your butter in a pot, adding the flour, garlic, milk and cheese and whisk until thick and smooth. If your sauce is too thick, you can add a little more milk to thin it out!
  • In another pot boil your veggies until they are soft, and mash. 
  • Combine the cooked pasta, veggies and sauce into an ovenproof dish.
  • Sprinkle a little cheese on top and bake until golden brown.
  • Enjoy!