Ruminations and recipes from a small kitchen in a big city.


Four wheel drive.

Thomas was born with a shoulder that appeared to the doctors upon examination to have suffered some very slight damage at birth. To them, he appeared to be favouring it, although the layman would have noticed nothing amiss. A few sessions of gentle physiotherapy had it functioning to their satisfaction. Then, when Thomas started crawling a month or so ago, it was on one hand and one elbow, bumping along like a car with a flat tyre. However, without the need for any further physio, he gained strength naturally and now is the fastest baby on all fours. He chases William around the house. Yes, they make noise.


The kitchen has never been busier. William eats practically everything; while Thomas is, of course, on solids. Having recently superseded the fully-pureed stage, he is currently eating semi-pureed with a number of discrete pieces and is starting to accept small items by hand, such as a tiny square of bread. Neither William nor Thomas ate commercial baby food, not that we object to it: but they did. So everything is prepared from scratch. Is it any wonder parents eat leftovers? While Tracy chops and purees and attempts to lodge a percentage of the results in two mouths with varying and seemingly ever-changing numbers of teeth, I cook our dinner. The kitchen is not large, but we rarely collide.


I obtained some excellent semi-dried tomatoes preserved in very good olive oil. While the flavour of properly-ripened late-summer tomatoes cannot be matched, semi-dried ones make a good substitute at this time of year. Their concentrated acid sweetness is a great way to bring jaded winter tastebuds out of hibernation. Last night, an old favourite with a twist. It's easy - on the table in minutes.

Pasta with semi-dried tomatoes and feta.

Boil some pasta. I used bavette: its thin flattened strands take a non-liquid coating very well.

Chop half a cup or more of semi-dried tomatoes into small pieces. Do the same with a similar amount of kalamata olives. Bring to room temperature a piece of good feta.

Drain the pasta, retaining just a little of the water. Return it to the pot. Add finely chopped semi-dried tomatoes and olives, fold through and top with feta. Lid pot until feta starts to warm through and melt. Serve, scattering chopped parsley over.


Sara said...

Look at those two little teeth!!!

Another Outspoken Female said...

on a non culinary note - I find osteo, especially cranial osteopathy amazing for babies and kids. They respond really fast and with no nasty manipulation involved.

Red Dirt Mummy said...

Ah yes, the mush and puree stage. So messy but lots of fun! While I made the vast majoity of Offspring #1's food those jars came in handy for road-trips and such however, #2 flatly refused all bought/processed/packaged foods (even rusks!) so home-made at all time was the only way to go.

kitchen hand said...

Sara, those teeth are very sharp.

AOF, our osteo is a genius. I'd been seeing him for over ten years for various running 'overuse' and back injuries and since then, he has assisted Tracy with long-term neck pain resulting from a childhood injury and now he has helped William and Thomas.

RDM, we tried jars on the run as well. It's funny how babies are all different - William flatly rejected rusks, throwing them to the floor; while Thomas crunched them up so quickly we feared he would choke.