Archive of ‘Toddler Food’ category

Food Recycling

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Our pediatrician told us toddlers are grazers, but last night at dinner I watched my daughter re-enact The Very Hungry Caterpillar.

She started with the top of a broccoli tree chopped up, then asked for another. Three broccoli trees later, she managed to put away Bubbie’s brisket and half a small chicken breast. It was still hot from the broiler, and I’m not kidding, this child could barely wait for it to cool.

Last night John was working late. I was making whole wheat pasta for him while feeding Luci dinner, and of course she wanted some of that too. I rinsed strands of spaghetti under the sink so they wouldn’t burn her mouth, scorching my hands in the process. I put them in front of her and cut them up.

My mother and I frequently talk on FaceTime in the evenings when John works or goes to art class. As we went from broccoli to pasta, I saw the gamut of her expressions begin at proud, and slowly morph into concern, as Luci kept asking for “More! More!”

“She must be going through a growth spurt,” my mother said.

“Whatever it is, she’s hungry,” I replied, going to the sink to rinse more pasta.

I sat down with Luci again, trying to finish my own dinner. “More! More!” she yelled.

I offered her some pasta. She shook her head.

“Chicken?”

No again.

“How about dessert?” my mother said, from her seat at the kitchen table in Baltimore where we’d spent a good part of our trip last week.

“Please don’t say the c word,” I cautioned her.

It’s not that cookie is a bad word in our house, but after eating such a healthy meal I just couldn’t bring myself to give Luci an animal cracker, her standard dessert fare.

“How about some berries instead?”

Luci nodded.

I opened the fridge and took out the blueberries and strawberries. The strawberries especially were looking a little dry.

I still cut up several, and put them on her high chair tray along with a handful of blueberries. Bubbie, proud again, watched her granddaughter go to town.

Not wanting to waste the rest of the fruit, I put it in a small pot with a cup of water, 1 tsp. brown sugar, and a squeeze of lemon juice.

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I boiled it down to a compote, which Luci enjoyed on her toast this morning. You can add a bit more white or brown sugar to suit your taste.

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This dish was cooked spur of the moment, as most of my food recycling recipes are. If you have any good tips for preserving food that’s about to go bad and turning it into a completely different, delicious dish, please post in the comments section. Food recycling doesn’t get enough attention, and it’s a great way to use up leftovers.

 

 

 

 

The Apple of My Oy

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I like matzoh. Maybe I’m in the minority here. I don’t like it enough to buy it when it’s out of season, but during Passover I enjoy it.

Matzoh brie is a pretty typical Passover breakfast, but it’s very heavy. I like to feel a little lighter on my toes, especially since I’m chasing Luci around a lot these days. One of my favorite Passover breakfasts is baked apples with yogurt. This is a fun cooking project to make with a toddler, and the natural sweetness from the apple gives everyone a nice little boost.

Baked Apples with Yogurt
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Ingredients
1 tsp. cinnamon
1/4 tsp. nutmeg
1/4 tsp. allspice
1/2 cup raisins
1 cup apple juice
1 cup yogurt
6 same-size Red Delicious apples
Instructions
Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
Combine cinnamon, nutmeg, allspice and raisins in a small bowl.
Core apples, making sure not to go through the bottom of the apple. Fill apples with the spice and raisin mixture. Place in a baking dish and pour apple juice on the bottom. Bake for 1 hour or until soft.
When apples are cool, top with yogurt.
The Anonymous Eater http://www.theanonymouseater.com/