Food Fit For a King!

ImageThere were so many things I said I would never do as a parent and then I became one. I swore my baby would be on a schedule, I would not give him a soother, I would never have him in our bed, the list goes on and on. However, there was one thing I said I would do and have so far stuck to it and that’s making my own baby food. This way I know what’s going into his little tummy and since he’s well into solids now it’s actually pretty fun concocting new recipes and experimenting with all the purees! My biggest issue (and I’m sure many others) is that there’s never enough time in a day. Being a working mom and having others watch your baby means you don’t always get a say about what goes in their tummies. Plus, since I enjoy food so much I’m not really into basing our meals around his simplistic tastes. So, I was only really left with one option: a 3 hour cook fest that results in enough food for Ollie’s little tummy for 2 weeks! Here’s how to make food fit for a King!

You can buy all vegetables and meat/fish from your local market, it’s worth the extra expense to buy everything organic (especially some fruits and veggies) and to make sure your meat/fish are antibiotic/hormone free. I use coconut oil instead of olive oil as it’s a healthier alternative when you’re heating the oil up to high temperatures.

You will need to have small containers to store all your food. You can use ice cube trays however, I find that the little cubes tend to get freezer burn. There are so many great little containers out there for making your own baby food, they’re worth the purchase as they keep the food air tight.

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Ingredients:

  • Sweet Potato
  • Butternut Squash
  • Spaghetti Squash
  • Zucchini
  • Broccoli
  • Basil (a handful)
  • Oregano (a handful)
  • Green Onions (1 bunch)
  • Mushrooms (1 pint)

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  • Steak
  • Salmon
  • Chicken

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  • Apple
  • Pear
  • Butter 2 tbsp
  • Coconut Oil
  • Boiled water approximately 1 L (you can just boil the kettle and use that water, it’s easy to pour it that way).

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Step 1: Squash

  • Preheat the oven to 350 F. Bake all the squash first as it usually takes the longest. Use a baking pan and put about an inch of water in it. Cut the squashes in half and take out all the seeds. Depending on your oven the length of time will vary, expect about an hour. You can tell when your squash is done by pushing a fork into it, it should slide in very easily. Peel off the skin of the sweet potato with a peeler and place in blender of your choice. For the butternut and spaghetti squash you can use a fork to get the squash out and then use a blender of your choice. Once each squash has been blended you can dole them out into your little containers.

Step 2: Mushroom Pesto

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The trick here is to make a lot of this as it’s absolutely delicious and you can mix it with some rice pasta and presto you’ve made dinner for yourself at the same time! Chop up all your ingredients. Heat 2 tbsp of butter and 1 tbsp of coconut oil in a frying pan, add your chopped veggies and cook until mushrooms are browned. Place in your blender and add some boiled water, puree until it reaches your desired consistency.

Step 3: Pear, Apple

Preheat oven to 350 F. Cut the fruit in half and place in a baking pan with about an inch of water. Bake until fruit is very soft to touch. Peel off skin and remove cores, place fruit in blender, you may need to add just a bit of boiled water to get your desired consistency.

Step 4: Salmon, Chicken and Steak

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Use the coconut oil to cook all 3. Simply melt some coconut oil and pour about a tbsp over the chicken, fish and steak. Bake in the oven at 350 for approximately 30 minutes (depending on your oven and the size of fish/meat). Once the meat/fish have been cooked you can put the salmon and chicken separately, in the blender using some boiled water to reach your desired consistency. For the steak, you can chop it up into very fine pieces and once it’s mixed with other purees you reduce the choking hazard.

Step 5: Broccoli

Steam the broccoli, steaming is one of the better choices to cook any food as it helps to keep a lot of the nutrients in.

Step 6: Creating your meals!

ImageThis is the fun part (as if you weren’t already having fun)! You can make as many different combinations as your heart desires. Here are some suggestions (which seem to work well with the O-man but every baby is different).

  1. Chicken, mushroom pesto, tiny bit of applesauce, sweet potato
  2. Salmon, broccoli, pear, spaghetti squash
  3. Steak, sweet potato, mushroom puree
  4. Chicken, apple, sweet potato, broccoli
  5. Sweet Potato, broccoli, pear, spaghetti and butternut squash

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The sky is really the limit! Just make sure you know your child’s allergies and make sure they’ve tried all the foods you use before combining them as otherwise you’ll have no idea what caused the tummy upset. If you’re interested feel free to join us for our exciting Baby Nutrition Workshop next weekend!

Baby Nutritrion Workshop!

LoblawsJust wanted to let you know that we’ve partnered up with Loblaws and will be offering a very fun and informative Sunday afternoon.

We will be meeting a nutritionist/dietician at Loblaws at 3pm, her name is Melanie Byland (you can read her bio on our Staff page).

She will be focusing her interactive talk on the nutritional value of different fruits and vegetables and will help us plan meals/diets for our babies.

We will be returning to Seasons just before 4pm where we will spend an hour making food for our babies for the week! You are welcome to bring containers or we can supply (for an extra charge) to bring your food home. We will be making a variety of fruits and vegetables.

There will be staff(s) onsite to watch the babies (in the studio downstairs) so that we can focus in the kitchen.

If you would like to partake in this fun afternoon please let us know, spaces are limited! If your babies has any allergies please notify us.

When: Sunday, April 7th
Time: 3-5pm
Loblaws: 3pm
Seasons 4-5pm
Cost: $45 (plus HST)
Materials: containers (supplied by Seasons for an extra cost or supplied by you for free 🙂
Food: Supplied by Seasons!

Lamb Lollipops!

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So, don’t be thrown off by the name of this dish, because let me assure you that it’s not lamb on a lollipop stick. It is actually a very delicious main course (also often served as an appetizer). We baked it with some root vegetables and served it with roasted potatoes! Mmmmm, yummy! Follow these steps to make this dish at your next dinner party or gathering and your guests will rave about your cooking skills!

Ingredients

  • 14 lamb lollipops
  • 12 sprigs fresh rosemary
  • 1/2 cup of a cold butter
  • handful of fresh sage leaves
  • 4 sprigs fresh thyme, leaves picked
  • sea salt
  • freshly ground black pepper
  • 12 cloves garlic, unpeeled
  • 3 large carrots, peeled and finely sliced
  • 1 onion, peeled and finely sliced
  • 2 leek, washed, halved and finely sliced
  • olive oil
  • 2 wineglasses white wine

Method

Preheat your oven to 180ºC/350ºF. Pick the leaves off 4 sprigs of rosemary, whiz them with the butter, most of the sage and the thyme in a food processor and season with salt and pepper. Using a small knife, take one of the lamb lollipops and cut between the meat and the bone from the base. You want to create a hole big enough to put your pinky finger in, making a sort of pocket. Do this to all the lollipops and divide the flavoured butter between them, pushing it into the pockets (see first photo).

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Tear off four arm-length pieces of tinfoil and fold each in half to give you four A3-sized pieces of foil. Divide the garlic and veg between them, making a pile in the middle of each square. Rub each of the lamb lollipops with olive oil and season with salt and pepper, then put two on top of each pile of veg and a sprig of rosemary and a few sage leaves on top of that.

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Carefully pull up the sides of the foil around the lollipop and pour a swig of wine into each. Gather the foil around the bone, pinching it together tightly. Any excess foil can be torn or cut off with scissors. Repeat for all 7 parcels of foil, then place the foil parcels on a baking tray with the bones facing up. Put in the preheated oven for 1.5 hours or until the meat is as tender as can be. Serve the parcels in the middle of the table so that your guests can open them up themselves.

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Butternut Squash Soup

One of the great things about Fall is all the delicious recipes out there! What we love most about this butternut squash soup recipe is that it’s so easy and only takes about 30 minutes!

 

Ingredients

1 Butternut squash (2-3 pounds) peeled and seeded

2 tbsp of unsalted butter

1 medium yellow onion chopped

6 cups of chicken stock

Salt and freshly ground pepper

 

Directions

1. Cut squash into 1-inch chunks

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2. In large pot melt butter

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3. Add onion and cook until translucent, about 8 minutes

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4. Add squash and stock

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5. Bring to a simmer and cook until squash is tender, about 15-20 minutes

6. Remove squash chunks with a slotted spoon and place in blender and puree

7. Return to  blended squash to pot

8. Stir and seasons with salt and pepper and serve warm.

 

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Fall Schedule

Our Fall Schedule and Calendar are up! If you’re looking for classes for this fall, look no further! We have everything from baking to hip hop. If you have any questions or inquiries about scheduling please feel to contact us at info@seasonsfamilycentre.com

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Hazelnut mushroom stuffed turkey breast

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Last night in our 1 hour/1 dinner class we made stuffed turkey breast, in honour of our American friends! This recipe is relatively simple and takes a lot less time than roasting an entire turkey. This recipe would adequately feed 4 people, so if you made two turkey breasts you could feed up to 8 people!

Hazelnut Mushroom Turkey Breast

Ingredients

1 single, boneless turkey breast

1 tbsp olive oil

½ tsp of salt and of pepper

1 cup chicken stock

Stuffing:

1 pkg dried mushrooms (we used oyster mushrooms in our recipe but you could use shiitake, porcini or lobster)

1/3 cup of hazelnuts

1 ½ cups of fresh bread crumbs

1 tbsp of olive oil

¼ cup of butter

1 cup of finely chopped white parts of leeks or onions

1 clove of garlic, minced

½ tsp each of dried thyme, salt and pepper

1 tbsp of chicken stock

2 tbsp of chopped fresh parsley

Directions

1. Stuffing: Soak mushrooms in 1 cup of boiling water for 15 minutes. Remove and discard stems, coarsely chop mushrooms.

2. On baking sheet, toast hazelnuts in 350 oven until skins crack (approximately 8 minutes). Transfer to tea towel; rub briskly to remove as much of the skins as possible, coarsely chop.

3. In skillet, toast bread crumbs over medium-high heat until golden, about 3 minutes. Add oil, fry until crispy, about 1 minute. Transfer to bowl.

4. In skillet, melt butter over medium-high heat, fry leeks, garlic, mushrooms, thyme, salt and pepper, stirring occasionally, until vegetables are softened, about 6 minutes.

5. Stir in chicken stock; cook, stirring until no liquid remains. Add the bread crumbs along with hazelnuts and parsley; toss to combine.

6. With a sharp knife held horizontally at thick long side of turkey, cut in half to 1 inch of opposite side, open like a book. Cover with waxed paper pound to ½ inch in thickness. Spread with stuffing, leaving 1 inch border on all sides. Starting at skinless side, roll up. Tie securely with string at 2 inch intervals.

7. Combine oil, salt and pepper in a small bowl; using a pastry brush, brush over turkey. Place on rack in roasting pan; pour in 1 cup of water.

8. Roast in 375•F oven, basting occasionally and adding ½ cup water halfway through, until no longer pink inside and meat thermometer inserted in centre registers 185•F

9. Transfer turkey to cutting board and tent with foil; let stand for 15 minutes before slicing.