Mom, Wife, Chef, Gardener, Dog Wrangler, Mom, Writer, Friend, Daughter, Sister, Mom, Creative Problem Solver, DIY Chick...figuring out life one day at a time.

Wednesday, March 23, 2011

Mom/baby chef: finger food finds

So I'm just going to ignore how long it's been since my last blog and jump right into it. My son has decided this last month that he doesn't want his pureed baby food, he only wants what his dad and I are eating, and he wants to feed himself, thank you very much! So I have been struggling to find baby friendly finger foods that will give him a healthy variety of the stuff he needs. Pasta, rice and bread are big hits, as is cheese. Also avocado (he is his mother's son, after all) and one morning he ate 3/4 of an entire banana by himself. He found the act of getting to take bites off of it really fun, unfortunately the resulting constipation reminded me that bananas are occasional treats, not for every day.
Last night I was struggling to figure out what to make for dinner that would allow me to use what I had at home and not run to the grocery store for one or two items, a bad habit I am trying to break. I ended up throwing together a pasta with lemon, capers, canned salmon (something that I have way too much of thanks to WIC) frozen peas and cherry tomatoes. It turned out surprisingly good, the bright flavors of the lemon and capers covered up the dull canned flavor that the salmon had. Imagine my surprise when the baby loved it too. I don't know why I didn't think of frozen peas before for him, but I guess I thought they would be a choking hazard, always the first thing I consider before introducing him to a new food. But peas are the thing now, and I'm happy because they are inexpensive and healthy, not to mention easy. Here is the rough recipe for the pasta I threw together, it is yummy, easy and inexpensive all good things for busy, tired mommies. Not being in blogging mode lately I didn't get any pictures of the dish, but here is Connor enjoying leftovers for lunch today showing you how he feels about the dish.
Peas, salmon and pasta are yummy!
Easy lemon salmon pasta toss

1/2 - 1 pound pasta depending on how much you want to make
2 cans salmon, drained
1/4 onion, diced
2 cloves garlic, minced
1/2 cup frozen peas
2 tablespoons capers, rinsed
1 lemon, zested and juiced
1 cup cherry tomatoes
fresh herb of your choice, I had tarragon. Basil and dill would be great as well.

Boil pasta according to package directions, save 1 cup of pasta water before draining.
In large skillet, heat some olive oil over medium heat. Saute onion until it begins to soften, add garlic and capers. Saute for a few minutes until garlic softens, then add canned salmon, cherry tomatoes and zest of lemon. Cook until salmon heats through and tomatoes begin to burst. Stir in pasta, pasta water, lemon juice and peas. Stir until most of moisture is absorbed, season with salt, pepper and herbs to taste.

Coming up in April, baby's first birthday and our first ever chickens!