As with all things parenting, there is far too much information out there. Camps of people who adamantly swear that their seven step method is sure to cure any sleep challenges, or that certain activities are the best brain boosters. Over our last 6 months of new parenthood we’ve walked cautiously and occasionally unsteadily through the forest of information and carefully curated our sources when researching our questions. We’ve been able to confidently weed out the noise and take a bit from here and a bit from there, patching together a plan that works for our little guy.
Food has been tricky for me, though, because I LOVE reading and thinking about food, and I’ve gotten deep into reading the various benefits of feeding your child through different methods. After following various bloggers and even reading a few books I thought I was going to dive into baby-led weaning headfirst. The idea of giving your child whole real foods and letting them explore various textures and flavors was appealing to me. Having him eat what we are eating for dinner was appealing to me. Letting him take the lead on feeding and stopping was appealing to me. So I dug deeper into resources but then was too nervous to hand him a pepper spear due to the choking and gagging that is a natural part of the learning process.
In the end, like everything else, we’ve landed on a hybrid approach that works for us. I decided to stop worrying about the ‘rules’ of one method too closely but instead to follow the values that are important to us! So – we are going to let him eat real, whole foods. For now they are pureed and he loves it! We’ve decided to have him eat what we are eating – liquefied pork and sweet potatoes sounds disgusting but he gobbled up the whole dish. Each meal currently highlights our ridiculous two spoon method that has naturally unfolded, where we load up a spoon and hand it to him. He grabs it, sucks off the food, and then chucks the spoon onto the floor. One of us retrieves it (hopefully before the dog does), and then the dance continues.
In our own way we are letting the baby take the lead.
We actually made this dish a few weeks ago and I’ve been behind on blogging. So this didn’t get liquefied for the baby, but I suppose I wouldn’t be against it. The original idea came from this recipe, and after sending it to my Vermont born and raised sister-in-law she suggested the final drizzle of maple syrup. Delicious! It’s a sweet side dish but pairs well with a roasted pork or chicken.
Maple Glazed Brussels Sprouts
Maple syrup, the apple, and a roasted red onion each add a sweet bite to this Brussels sprouts dish. A perfect side with pork or another savory main!
- 5 cups of Brussels sprouts
- 2 red onions
- Olive oil spray
- 1 granny smith apple
- 1/2 tablespoon unsalted butter
- 7 oz thick-cut bacon (about 5 slices) cut into 1/2 inch pieces
- Maple Syrup
Steps & Notes
- Preheat the oven to 375 degrees.
- Prepare the bacon, peel the onions and cut in half lengthwise, core the apple, and cut the brussels in half.
- Spread the brussels and halved onions on a greased baking dish. Spray with olive oil spray and season with salt and pepper.
- Next add the apple, fill with butter and add to the baking sheet as well. Roast for 30 minutes.
- As the veggies and apple cook, saute the bacon in a large skillet over medium heat. Cook for 10 – 12 minutes. Then, pour most of the drippings into a container, leaving enough in the pan to saute the brussels.
- Remove the bacon and place onto a plate with a paper towel.
- After 30 minutes remove the apple and onions from the pan and put the brussels back into the oven for 5 more minutes.
- Cut the apple and onions once they are cool enough to touch.
- Next remove the brussels and add them to the saute pan with the apple and onion. Drizzle with one spoonful of bacon grease for flavor. Cook for about 10 minutes.
- Drizzle the dish with maple syrup before serving – don’t be shy! Serve warm.
Recipe from The Pantry Portfolio @ http://www.pantryportfolio.com
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