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Been talking this week about introducing babies to spices-it’s difficult to know when to add what, especially with so many weaning guides seeming to play it safe and advocate the “carrot for a week” style plans.
To be honest I’ve been mixing up my sauces pretty much from the start-I’ve steered away from chilli so far (much to my husband’s relief I’m sure as a standard evening conversation is along the lines of:
“Thank you for doing dinner. Did you put some chillies in it?”
“Ummmmm…I may have put in a little more than I meant too. Shall I get the yoghurt?”) but my general cooking style tends to involve rummaging in the cupboards, sniffing herbs and spices and throwing in whatever might go well in fairly liberal quantities (except rosemary and fenugreek-I’ve learned the hard way that too much of the former makes things taste soapy and the latter reeeeeeaaaaaally bitter :/).
So little miss has already been exposed to garlic, onion, turmeric, cumin, mustard seeds, most dried and many fresh green herbs (fresh basil was her second “taste” after red pepper) etc. I pull bits out, and she either chomps down or ignores them (or pulls a face).
The other day I picked up a load of lemon grass knocked right down, so used the oppertunity to make some thai style curries, being a bit more liberal with the spices (though not, as I said with the chilli…came close but thought I’d wait a bit as I was bulk cooking-maybe when I get one out the freezer I’ll add some dried chilli after taking her a portion out).
So we had chopped chicken thighs (bit of a change from breast), a finely chopped onion, couple of cloves of garlic chopped, about 2″ root ginger coarsley grated and the lemongrass finely chopped, all fried in a splosh of veggie oil (I added a few drops of sesame oil, as I’m an addict), then cooked up for about half an hour to an hour (to get chicken tender) with some chopped tomatoes, a cardomen pod, a basil leaf and some dessicated coconut (coconut milk would have worked better, but I didn’t have any!). All served up with fresh corriander stirred through and rice, which she guzzled up, as well as having a fair amount of sauce (she’s been practicing with spoons, so I load them up and pass them to her, or she’ll pick them up off the table) and a taste of the chicken (success, as she’s not really been very interested in meat recently).
It was pretty spicy with the ginger, but not full on hot, so seemed a good stepping stone. Maybe it’s time to start on the chillies? Hmmmmm….
I also did a similar one with beef in the slow cooker but added some spinach instead of corriander and forgot the coconut, but it still worked