This week’s BLW post will be 2 weeks’ worth!
Firstly, because we’ve been a little lazy about BLW.. the past week has been really mad for me and I’m so exhausted in the mornings that I sometimes simply cannot find the self-will to be creative, get cooking and clean up the mess after.
Days like those I just offer her wheat toast, apples, or on bad days, even a bowl of apple puffs and a packet of baby veggie juice. I try not to get too bothered about it anyway because at this stage (7M) she’s still getting all the nutrients she needs and more from her formula and her afternoon porridge.
Also, Little Miss Sophie went on a hunger strike for three days or so which totally flummoxed me in the beginning but I’ve realized these hunger strikes are really phases which we are going to be experiencing on and off until she’s older.
Basically (during her strikes) she rejects all solids – will fling the food on the floor, scream when her legs touch the high chair – and will only drink milk when she is extremely hungry, even then only 60-100 ml at each feed. Good part is, after her strikes she is usually ravenous and will eat non-stop, packing back all the lost pounds.
Case in point – after 2 days of hunger striking, today Sophie ate two butternut squash pancakes, a bowl of apple puffs, two tomato rice crackers, a bowl of cod+sweet potato brown rice pasta and a cup of super-veg juice. Is that crazy or what??
In any case, these are the new recipes we’ve tried out over the past 2 weeks 🙂 Enjoy!
Ricotta and Spinach Fritters (recipe adapted from My Lovely Little Lunchbox)
INGREDIENTS (makes about 9 baby-sized fritters)
3 large heaped tablespoons Fresh Ricotta Cheese (I got mine from NTUC Fairprice Finest) – should have no salt, no sugar
2 handfuls of organic baby spinach, steamed (2 handfuls before steaming)
3 tablespoons organic wholewheat unbleached flour
( I omitted lemon and parmesan cheese because I think lemon is too acidic for Sophie just yet, and parmesan has quite a bit of salt)
Heat up your toaster, and warm up your pan to medium heat.
Beat cheese and spinach together in a bowl until smooth. Add egg and flour, beat again until you have a dough like, sticky mixture.
Using two spoons, scoop the mixture and put blobs on your pan (olive oil optional). They will melt a little into round fritters. Let it cook about 2 mins, on one side, then flip and leave for another 2 mins. Both sides should be golden brown and fritter should still be soft in the middle.
Pop the fritters into your toaster and let them toast for another 5-10 minutes. The fritters will magically “puff up” and rise a little into puffy fat little green-flecked rounds.
Let it cool for about 5-10 minutes, to test, take a bit yourself. Serve to hungry baby!
Sophie’s verdict: Pass with flying colors. She ate 3 of those fritters. I’ve never seen her eat so much! And when she was done, she mashed the leftovers around into interesting shapes and had a lot of fun with the textures. Although I thought they tasted horrible (no salt, no sugar, no herbs) but I guess to a baby who is not exposed to the world of junk they were very yummy – fresh, slightly creamy and melty on the inside, and crunchy on the outside.
Best of all, they are absolutely packed with nutrition! I got the idea to use ricotta cheese in BLW after an Italian friend shared with me how they give ricotta to babies really young because its so neutral in taste but packed full of calcium, good fats and nutrition. Paired with baby spinach for iron and vitamins, this makes a really virtuous breakfast and the fritters are just the right size for baby to hold ! So this one is staying in my BLW regulars ^^
Butternut Squash Pancakes (my own recipe)
INGREDIENTS (makes 4 baby-sized pancakes, 5 adult sized pancakes)
1 cup whole wheat unbleached organic flour
1 cup butternut squash puree / mashed steamed butternut squash
3/4 cup milk
1/2 tsp baking powder
For baby (dash of ground cinnamon)
For Mama and Papa (1/2 tsp dried oregano, 1/2 tsp dried dill)
In a bowl, mix flour + baking powder
In another bowl, combine egg + milk + butternut squash puree
Mix dry and wet ingredients together. Set aside 3/4 for the adult version
Heat pan to medium heat, coat with olive oil. Fry mini pancakes for baby until golden and a little crisp. Set aside to cool.
Add oregano and dill to adult version, as well as a pinch of salt and pepper. Melt knob of butter in pan, pour out batter in grown-up size pancakes. In the mean time, you can throw together a simple avocado salsa (1 tbsp chopped red onion, 3 chopped cherry tomatoes, 1 ripe mashed avocado)
Serve baby the cooled pancakes, with a dash of pure maple syrup if you’re feeling indulgent. Tuck into your own savoury version!
Maple Sweet Potato Loaf (adapted from My Lovely Little Lunchbox)
2 small sweet potatoes, roughly diced, steamed and pureed or mashed
1 1/2 cups wholemeal plain flour
1 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 teaspoon cinnamon, ground
1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
1/2 cup baby or greek yoghurt
1/2 teaspoon vanilla
1/4 cup maple syrup
1/2 cup orange or grapefruit juice
Preheat oven to 180 degrees celsius (350F). Place the flour, baking powder, cinnamon into a large bowl. Mix to combine and create a well in the centre. Place the olive oil, eggs, yoghurt, vanilla, maple syrup, and juice into a bowl and whisk to combine. Pour the wet ingredients into the well of the dry and mix to combine. Fold through the sweet potato. Pour the batter into a loaf tin lined with baking paper. Bake for 20-30 minutes or until a skewer inserted comes out clean. Allow to cool slightly before removing to cool completely on a wire rack.
No shots of Sophie enjoying this because she was on a hunger strike and fed it all to Benjy. However, K and I enjoyed this very much and will be offering it to her again when she’s back to her normal greedy self. 🙂
And since we are (kinda) talking about culinary pursuits, I’ve been quite active in the kitchen lately!
Started out as wanting to take the burden off my Mum’s helper – I decided not to require her to cook dinner for us because I think she’s really tired from looking after Sophie Rose and doing housework in the day (she watches Sophie for 5-6 hours max, but she’s getting older and I’m worried for her health).
We have also started offering Sophie Rose juice! 🙂 This only when she could drink out of a cup because I don’t want her to lose the association of milk and a bottle just yet.
On the advice of Mummies in my March group, we bought a Pigeon Mag Mag cup to see if Sophie would take to drinking through a straw and it worked like magic! She’s so excited about holding her cup like a big girl and she loves her veggie juice!
When I’m in a rush I give her packet juice (Pigeon’s Veggie Juice) but when I have the time, I make cold-pressed juice at home.
Here’s my mix:
Libby’s Super Veggie Baby Juice
2 large Korean apples
2 organic orange carrots (medium sized)
1 large organic purple carrot
2 handfuls of organic baby kale
Handful of berries ( I had blueberries in the fridge)
This made enough juice for Sophie Rose, K and I ! What a great way to help baby get her nutrients, but remember to brush baby’s teeth after if she has any!
And boy am I glad the Little Bow Kitchen is back in operation. I’ve missed the taste of my own (when it’s unburnt) cooking.
Here are some meals I’ve whipped up in the past two weeks:
Brunch for K and I !
Brunch is really the easiest thing to do 🙂 I’ve even incorporated my Beaba Babycook to make it faster. For this brunch:
1 packet Morinaga pancake mix (recommended by one of my lovely readers). Why make pancakes from scratch when you can get deliciously fluffy 2-inch hotcakes from a box in half the time? ^.^ We have them now with pure 100 per cent organic maple syrup from Canada – it’s worth the price difference! Pure maple syrup has this gorgeous burnt, caramelly molasses taste and is far less sweet.
Red-skinned baby potatoes – I steamed these in my Beaba in half the time I usually take to boil them in a pan! So fast! Anyway I steam them till they are nearly soft and then fry them in garlic butter and rosemary to make the most delish breakfast potatoes!
Honey yoghurt with blue and raspberries.
White truffle scrambled eggs
Also, I posted up this photo of my latest go-to pasta for those nights when I just need comfort (and carbs) on a spoon. You know, pasta followed by my crack brownies (really, triple chocolate fudge brownies, I am not a drug dealer) and a large fruity beer.
The response was so heartening, it sounds like many of you fellow Mamas are in dire need of an easy to whip up comfort pasta dish! So I decided to share my recipe here. I invented it one night when I just needed to use up everything in the fridge and it was amazing. It’s spicy, creamy, warm, smokey and it just fills you up – your tummy and your heart.
I’ve bolded the ingredients because I don’t have an actual recipe, I just wing it.
Libby’s Pumpkin Sage Cream Penne with Smoked Sausage
(Serving size: 1 very hungry person or 2 normal persons)
Set water to boil for pasta. Add olive oil and salt in the water.
In the meantime, brown chopped onions and garlic in butter in a skillet. When brown, add 4 crushed sage leaves and fry until fragrant. Then add 3 chopped small sweet bell peppers (red and yellow work better for me) and turn heat to low. Leave the peppers to turn soft.
In about 10 minutes, add in the contents of 1 can of cream of pumpkin. Slice thinly one smoked and tasty sausage. I use Beddar Cheddar from Johnsonville, available at most supermarkets. If you’re feeling decadent, at this point you can add 4 tablespoons of cooking cream. Add sausage to skillet, let mixture continue simmering at low heat.
Water should be boiling, toss in handful of wholewheat penne and let it cook for about 10-11 minutes.
When penne is cooked, drain and add to the pumpkin/sausage (DIVINE) mixture and stir.
If you have a stash of yuzukocho (yuzu pepper paste / also crack), stir in half a teaspoon to elevate this dish to orgasmic levels. If not, grate black pepper over.
Best eaten with just one spoon in your most comfortable pyjamas in front of the television with your dog sleeping on your feet and the A/C blasting.
Happy Deepavali everyone!