Once upon a time I shared links that I thought were interesting on Google Reader, but ever since they took away the 'share' option my favorite internet reads have piled up, unshared (unless I decide to inundate a friend with links to things I think they should read. I'm so bossy. Sorry, friends!) This seems like a good place to share- here are some links to things I've been digging lately.
From Scratch Club: This is the site run by a great local group with a focus on real food, gardening, community, and education. They're blog posts and tutorials tend to deliver inspiration at just the right time. I've been paying a lot more attention to what we eat lately and aiming for as much "real food" and as little processed food as possible. I was just saying that I need to find a replacement for the chocolate syrup we have in the fridge (I love a bit on my ice cream....) and today FSC posted a recipe for three-ingredient homemade magic shell. Can't wait to try this! This group (and some nudging from foodie friends) has also inspired me to make my own yogurt, use more dried (instead of canned) beans, and has been a big part of my realization that cooking from scratch isn't as hard, time consuming, or complicated as I thought.
100 Days of Real Food: Like I said above, now that I'm responsible for a small young human, I've really focused on what we're putting into her body, and ours. For over six months she was exclusively breastfed-- nourished by the most local, unprocessed, natural food there is. So when we started introducing solids, I wanted to keep that trend up as much as possible. I've been making more from scratch, buying as much local as possible (so much easier in the summer), and buying organic when we can. I found this blog at the perfect time. It's full of simple ideas for real food based meals, ways to avoid processed foods, and how to do it all affordably. I love the resources here and I've already used several of the ideas.
Tasty things I've made recently:
3-ingredient cheesy crackers: great toddler (and grownup) snack- Evy loves these. Most of the new recipes I've made lately are snack-focused. Evy will eat grapes or bananas for snack, but I wanted some more whole food options to mix things up a bit.
Energy bites: There are all kinds of variations on this recipe. I used this one as the base but used almond butter and added (in addition to the oats and coconut) puffed rice cereal, flax meal, and cinnamon. I skipped the vanilla. They are so tasty, we all love them. One is plenty filling, a perfect afternoon snack. Evy watched me make them while she ate her lunch. I told her she could have one after she finished lunch. She really takes her time with her meals these days (all about the slow food movement, I suppose), so I had forgotten about the energy balls when she was done. She didn't, though! "Ba, ba!" she demanded, pointing at the fridge. Yes, m'am!
Crunchy roasted chick peas: This was on my 'to make' list for a long time. Super easy, super tasty, a favorite of mine and Evy's. I haven't figured out a way to store them so they stay crunchy, but they aren't awful once they get chewy.
Things I haven't made yet but plan to:
Coconut oil popcorn
peanut, carrot, and cabbage slaw
radish slaw (we got a bunch of radishes in our farm share today - yum!)
Baby-led weaning: this is the general approach we used to introduce Evelyn to solids after she was 6 months old. It worked great for us -- no purees or spoon-feeding, she was totally in control of how much she ate, and we've eaten meals as a family ever since we started seating her at the table with us. She currently eats all kind of things- from chicken curry to pasta with pesto to pitas with hummus and cheese. The best resource for learning about baby-led weaning is the book, but the website and Facebook group are pretty good, too.
Janet Lansbury: Her parenting approach makes a lot of sense to me- the website is a good resource for those days when toddlerhood boggles my mind.
SquintMom and Science of Mom : These two blogs take on parenting 'hot topics' that can be truly confusing, review the scientific research, and draw rational conclusions about the facts. I love them so much. It can be agonizing to figure out what the facts are about things like vaccinations, sunscreen, breastfeeding, sleep, parenting styles, and solid food. On both of these sites the research is presented clearly, with clear citations, and all sides presented. For an over-thinker like me (and many parents), this is a godsend.