Wednesday, February 29, 2012

Cold Care Concoction

It seems despite our best efforts and mild Wisconsin winter we still couldn’t escape the dreaded “family” cold.  We usually try to let it “run it’s course” but there are only so many days you can watch your child miserable and wake 20x a night with them.  I created this little concoction for Bebe B.  She loved it making it a breeze to get her to drink it all.  The tea is a blend of elder flower, linen flower, chamomile flower and peppermint leaf.  Bebe B doesn’t drink a lot of juice because I would much rather she eat a piece of fruit, which she loves.  When kids are sick though the more healthy fluids including water you can get them to drink the better.  Also This is a herbal tea and naturally doesn’t contain caffeine.  I really feel it helped because she slept much better after having it.   

Cold Care Concoction - 12 Months+

Brew 1 tea bag in almost boiling water, covered for about 7 minutes.  Remove tea bag and allow to cool for about 10-15 minutes.  Mix 1 part brewed tea to 1 part water to 1 part juice.  Let your little one drink it up with a straw to make it more fun!  If you cannot find this tea you can substitute with another herbal tea like chamomile, simply brew for 4 minutes instead.

Monday, February 27, 2012

Puree Monday - Sweet Potato, Chicken & Kale Quinoa

This is a fantastic recipe for family meal time.  It’s a one stop shop kind of dinner.  We all love it in our house.  As soon as Bebe “I” begins solids I know I’ll be turning to this recipe.  I’ll add some salt and pepper for Dee, Bebe B and I to half and still have a ton left to puree for Bebe “I”.

Sweet Potato, Chicken & Kale Quinoa - 10 Months+
1 cup Quinoa
2 cups Water or Bebe Stock
1-2 Boneless/ Skinless Chicken Breasts
1 tsp Olive Oil
1 Large Sweet Potato
5-6 Large pieces of Kale
1 tbsp of chopped fresh Rosemary

Begin by grilling the chicken breasts on the stove with the olive oil.  Once fully cooked set aside.  

Next peel and cube the sweet potato (you want to ensure it’s in small enough pieces to cook through with the Quinoa).  Rinse and pat dry the kale then rough chop it.  Finely chop the rosemary.

Rinse the Quinoa VERY well, this is an important step as the grain has powdery residue that needs to be rinsed away.  Add the Quinoa to a medium saucepan with the water or stock and cubed sweet potatoes.  Bring to a boil and cook for about 10 minutes.  Add the chopped kale and rosemary and continue cooking another 5-10 minutes.  

Chop the cooked chicken into bite size pieces and fold into the cooked quinoa.  Remove from heat and cover, allow to sit for at least 5 minutes.  Next puree in either a food processor or or in the Beaba babycook till you reach the desired consistency for your little one.  As your bebe gets more and more adapt to chunkier textures you can kip pureeing and either run through a food mill or mash with a fork.  Add a touch of salt and this makes a great meal for the whole family.  

This recipe will keep up to 3 days in the fridge or 3 months in the freezer.  This recipe will fill about 5-10 ice cube trays (50-75 servings).   

Dairy-Free. Gluten-Free.

Before and After the Pureeing

Some of the Awesome Health Benefits:

-Sweet Potatoes are high in Vitamin A and beta carotene as well as potassium. They also contain a good amount of Vitamin E, calcium and folate.

-Quinoa is rich in amino acids and protein and well as magnesium and other vitamins. 

-Kale is VERY nutrient and antioxidant rich.

Friday, February 24, 2012

Rice Pudding with Dried Blueberries

Lately when shopping I have been eyeing the rice pudding and licking my lips.  Part of my new years resolutions include trying to make more foods instead of purchasing them pre-prepared.  Not an easy task for busy parents I know.  I decided to create a recipe that would be easy, healthy and have a fun twist.

My first batch was a complete fail...dry and crusty.  After adjusting things and adding more moisture my second batch was delicious. Dried blueberries work great with the earthy flavor of the brown rice but they can be a bit pricey.  Another dried fruit could easily be substituted like the traditional raisin.  Bebe B loved it (the second batch) and because it’s not super sweet it made a great breakfast.  

Rice Pudding with Dried Blueberries - 12 Months+
2 cups cooked Brown Rice (room temperature)
    about 1 cup dry rice yields 2 cups cooked
2 large Eggs
2 1/4 Milk (I use almond milk)
1 tsp pure Vanilla
1/4 cup Vanilla Yogurt
1/3 cup Honey 
1/2 tsp Nutmeg
1/2 tsp Cinnamon
1/2 cup Dried Blueberries
warm Water

Preheat your oven to 350 degrees (f).  Place your dried blueberries in a small bowl with some warm water, I discovered this trick helps plump them up a bit.  Whisk together eggs, milk, vanilla, yogurt, honey, cinnamon and nutmeg and till very well combined.  Next fold in the cooked rice and gently combine.  Drain the blueberries from the warm water and fold into the rice mixture.  Pour into a medium sized ceramic or glass baking dish (at least 3 inches deep) and bake for about 40-50 minutes.  Your pudding should be soft and creamy but no longer liquidy when done.  Serve warm.  Store leftovers in an airtight container in the refrigerator.

Vegetarian and Gluten-Free.

Thursday, February 16, 2012

The Lunchbox: Week of February 13

Above is a picture of Bebe B’s Valentine’s Day lunch from this week, containing:

  • Heart Shaped Peanut Butter, Cream Cheese & Banana Sandwiches
  • Pita Chips
  • HeartBEET Hummus
  • Wavy Carrots
  • Kiwi Hearts

Happy Lunchtime Everyone!!

Extreme Close-up!
Sprinkled with Cinnamon!

Wednesday, February 15, 2012

Pesto Melt

This is an easy sandwich that you can cut into any shape you like.  We are all about hearts here these days.

Pesto Melt - 12 Months+
Whole grain bread
Mozzarella Cheese
Pesto (either store purchased or homemade)
Earth Balance or Butter

Using a cookie cutter cut the shape/shapes you want from bread and cheese.  spread the inside of the bread shapes with a little Earth Balance or butter.  Assemble your sandwiches and spread a layer of pesto on the cheese.  Toast in a toaster oven or 350 degree (f) oven for a few minutes until the cheese starts to melt.  Allow to cool for a minute or two before serving.  Makes a great addition to a lunchbox!

Tuesday, February 14, 2012

Valentine Munch

Here is an easy and fun recipe we made recently at my Petite Chefs class.  All of the kids enjoyed making it and adding the things they liked best!

Valentine Munch - 12 Month+
4 cups whole grain, unsweetened cereal
1 cup rolled oats
1 cup dried cranberries 
½ cup dried cherries
½ cup unsweetened coconut
¼ chopped hazelnuts
½ cup small pretzels
½ cup butter or non-hydrogenated vegetable spread
2 tbsp 100% fruit  juice
1 tsp cinnamon
½ tsp nutmeg

Preheat oven to 300 F degrees.  Melt the butter in a glass bowl, in the microwave.  Stir the juice, cinnamon and nutmeg into the melted butter until well combined.  In a large bowl combine the rest of the ingredients until well mixed.  Pour the melted butter mixture over the cereal mixture and stir until well coated with the butter mixture.  Place on a baking sheet(s) in a thin layer.  Bake for 30 minutes stirring every 10 minutes.  Allow to cool for about 10-15 minutes and enjoy!  Store in an airtight container for up to a week.  

Happy Valentine’s Day!!

Friday, February 10, 2012

The Lunchbox: Week of February 6

Above is a picture of one of Bebe B’s lunches from this week, containing:

  • Heart Shaped Pesto Grilled Cheese (recipe coming soon!)
  • Walnuts
  • Apples & Blackberries
  • Sweet Potato Puffs
  • Valentine Munch (recipe coming soon!)

Happy Lunchtime Everyone!!

Monday, February 6, 2012

Puree Monday - Green Goat Cheese

This is a beautiful and creamy puree perfect for little your little bebe’s pallet.  It’s best not to introduce until you have already introduced dairy (such as cheese or yogurt) and your bebe has no issues with it. Goat cheese is a wonderful cheese for babies because as goats are much smaller animals than cows so are the proteins found in their milk, making them easier to digest.

Green Goat Cheese Puree - 10 Months+
1 cup peas (fresh or thawed if using frozen)
1 ripe avocado
1/2 cup fresh goat cheese
1/2 tsp nutmeg
water for steaming

Steam the peas in either a steaming basket on the stove or in the Beaba babycook.  If using the babycook fill water to the 2 mark for a full basket of peas.  If steaming on the stove use about 2-3 inches of water and steam for about 10 minutes.  

Puree the steamed peas a food processor or babycook for a couple minutes.  Then add the avocado, goat cheese and nutmeg and puree until well blended.  This puree should be a little chunky but if you need to thin it out a bit to reach a consistency right for your little one, you can add a touch of water. This recipe will keep up to 3 days in the fridge or 3 months in the freezer.  This recipe will fill about 2-3 ice cube trays (10-30 servings).   

Vegetarian and Gluten-Free.

Some of the Awesome Health Benefits:
-Goat Cheese is a very good source of calcium. It is also a wonderful source of protein (more than cow’s cheese), phosphorus, riboflavin (vitamin B2) and potassium.

-Avocados are a wonderful "good fat" food for baby's brain and physical development. They contain valuable nutrients including folate, fiber, potassium, vitamin E; and iron.

Saturday, February 4, 2012

Hole in One

This is fun twist on the standard eggs & toast breakfast we often have at our house.  It was a big hit with Bebe B!

Hole in One - 12 Months+
1 slice bread (we used organic sourdough)
1 egg
1 tbsp shredded Romano cheese
pinch paprika
pinch italian seasoning
pinch salt & pepper 

Using a circle cookie cutter, cut a round hole from a slice of bread.  Put the bread in a lightly oiled pan on medium heat.  Crack the egg right in the center of the hole.  Sprinkle with paprika, italian seasoning, salt and pepper.  Cook evenly on both sides crisping toast and cooking egg through.  Sprinkle toast with cheese and serve.  I like to toast the circle shape and serve that too, why waste bread!

This recipe is vegetarian.

Thursday, February 2, 2012

The Lunchbox: Week of January 30

Above is a picture of one of Bebe B’s lunches from this week, containing:

  • Almond Butter, Cheddar & Cream Cheese Quesadilla
  • Popcorn 
  • Quinoa with Raisins & Edamame
  • Red Delicious Apples
  • Avocado slices (wrapped in foil to prevent browning)

Happy Lunchtime Everyone!!