The simple things in the oven

You don’t have to get all fancy when it comes to feeding your little one finger food. Personally I think one of the tastiest treats is your favourite vegetable rubbed in olive oil and left in the oven for a bit. Either cut your veg into chip shapes or manageable chunks, rub with a little oil, sprinkle with herbs if you wish. No salt for the little people, you can add yours later.

Try potato, pumpkin (butternut squash), summer squash, sweet potato, tomatoes (though can get messy), beetroot, parsnip, carrots, even kohlrabi!

You can usually tell when they are cooked, as they start to smell delicious and make your mouth water.

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September 18, 2007 at 7:56 am Leave a comment

On how many ice cubes …

I was at a stay and play session this morning. I must have gotten there too early, as at the beginning there were only 2 mums (and babies) there. So I got caught in the middle of the age old weaning conversation between the mum of a 5 1/2 month old and the mum of a 6 month old. The first mum was very concerned as her daughter had been eating a whole ice cube for the past week for every meal. And this morning she didn’t eat so much as a teaspoon. Mum number 2 gave a fascinating expose about the timing of meals and how to fit naps and milk around that. Apparently I’m failing as a mum because I don’t give lunch on the dot of 12.00. Well sometimes I might. Or it might be the dot of 1.00. Or the dot of 1.27. Well, you get the picture.

Mum number 1 was also saying that she didn’t know how much to feed her daughter. Apparently her health visitor said to feed as much as she would eat. Sounds sensible to me. But mum wasn’t happy with that. She wanted a breakdown of how many teaspoons, how many icecubes.

Sometimes the only way I know how much the Imp has actually eaten is by the contents of the next day’s nappies. Sometimes I’ve thought that he ate something in it’s entirety, only to find it hidden in a groove in the highchair or pram when cleaning up later. I do have those moments of maybe-if-my-baby-ate-my-solids-he-would-sleep-through-the-night but then I slap myself back to reality.

I like to watch the Imp playing with his food, exploring the textures and consistencies. And sometimes he even eats those things with their fabulous textures and consistencies, but the exploration is just as important as the eating – I try not to lose sight of that.

Like they say, until they’re one, it’s just for fun. What happens after they’re one is I suppose, anyone’s guess.

September 10, 2007 at 5:39 pm 4 comments

Stuffed Summer Squash

Stuffed Summer Squash

At the farmers markets this morning the bright sun-yellow summer squash became irresistable to me. I bought a handful, but now I regret not buying more. Regret not, as there is always next week! I made these stuffed summer squash and they are a little more-ish… for myself as much as for the Imp.

6 medium summer squash

1 medium carrot

1/2 onion

1/2 cup grated cheese

1 clove garlic

1/4 cup breadcrumbs

Boil the squash and carrot for about 10 minutes until they are only slightly tender. Cut the squash in half and scoop out the middle, so the squash skins form a neat little case. Chop onion, carrot and garlic very finely. Fry them with a little oil. Add in chopped squash flesh that you have scooped out and saute a few minutes. Remove from heat and mix together with cheese and breadcrumbs. Put the squash cases onto a baking tray and spoon the mixture into the squash cases. You can sprinkle the top with breadcrumbs if you wish. Bake in medium oven about 20 minutes.

Enjoy.

September 9, 2007 at 1:22 pm Leave a comment

Potato Parmesan Rosti

It’s the day before my Abel & Cole veg box delivery so I went through the fridge to figure out what need to be used up. A mountain of potatoes, a few carrots and a zucchini. So where to from there – ah, the humble potato rosti. As the Imp is in a serious potato craze at the moment, these are sure to meet with his approval.

Potato Parmesan Rosti

450g potatoes

1 medium zucchini

2 medium carrots

handful grated parmesan

1 small onion

olive oil

tablespoon butter

Grate zucchini, carrot, potato and squeeze excess moisture out and put into large bowl. Mix in grated parmesan. Finely chop onion and fry for a few minutes in butter and a drizzle of oil. Add to potato mixture and mix well. Spoon balls of mixture onto baking tray and slightly flatten. Bake in 200 degree oven for 15 minutes. Turn and bake a further 10 minutes. Makes about 12.

Oh, they are in the oven now and I’m counting down the minutes!

September 4, 2007 at 3:25 pm 1 comment

Bento Yum

Here is what I am aspiring to when we get to packed lunches stage … Bento Yum!

August 31, 2007 at 8:26 pm 1 comment

Win Vegetarian and Vegan Mother and Baby Guide

My lil half pint pixie friend is having a competition to win a copy of Vegetarian and Vegan Mother and Baby Guide, have a look!

August 31, 2007 at 4:17 pm 2 comments

Baked Polenta Fries

Heidi Swanson is my hero. Check out her baked polenta fries. I’ve omitted the salt in hers …

2 cups organic milk

2 cups water

1 1/2 cups polenta

1/2 cup grated Parmesan cheese

1/4 cup melted clarified butter or olive oil

Bring the milk and water just to a boil in a large saucepan. Slowly stream in the polenta while stirring constantly. Turn down the heat a bit if needed (you don’t want the polenta to scorch). Continue stirring until the polenta thickens up, this can take anywhere from just a few minutes to much longer depending on your polenta. Stir in the cheese.

Remove from heat and spread out 1/2-inch thick onto a baking sheet using a spatula (although I feel like I get a better shape by letting it cool a minute or two and then using my hands). Chill in a refrigerator for at least an hour, or overnight. Cut into wide-cut “fry” shapes using a straight-edge for guidance and uniformity (or opt for a more rustic cut). Rub each fry with a bit of clarified butter or olive oil.

Bake in a 450 degree oven, middle rack, for 20 minutes or until golden and crispy. Flip the fries once after ten minutes.

Makes 2 dozen wide-cut fries.

August 31, 2007 at 4:06 pm 2 comments

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