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#1 of 30 Old 08-02-2011, 02:46 PM - Thread Starter
 
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What are you freezing ahead for after the baby comes? Have you started filling your freezer yet? I am freezing food now, but also eating some of that on nights I'm too tired to cook! Mostly I'm just cooking huge meals and freezing leftovers, but I'm looking for ideas, too!

 

Here's what I have so far (we're vegetarian, FYI):

 

veggie burgers

bean burritos

breakfast burritos

pasta

bean soup (will add lots of soups before November hits)

TONS of fruit frozen in for smoothies (also ridiculous amounts of peach jam put up)

big bag of cooked quinoa (wish I had done this in smaller portions, but oh well)

 

 

I'm hoping to have nearly a month's worth of dinners frozen, and a bunch of pancakes/waffles/muffins/biscuits/etc for quick easy breakfasts, too. I had about two weeks' worth of food frozen last time, and for some idiotic reason we ate half of that before my mom even left. I really regretted not having more ready to eat meals. I'll probably also freeze a bunch of fresh bread, both plain loaf bread and banana/zucchini bread. We finally joined a CSA so hopefully I'll have even more produce put up, too!

 

Also, if you're having baby at home or will be home shortly after the birth, are you planning a certain post-labor meal? Last time I had minestrone soup frozen, and I took it out of the freezer when I called the midwife. Hot soup was sooooo nice after laboring all day! I may go for soup again, but I don't know. It took me months to think of the perfect meal last time, lol.


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#2 of 30 Old 08-02-2011, 03:47 PM
 
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I plan on making a TON of soups, salsa, taco fillings (beans, rice, meat), honey baked lentils, muffins, meatloaf muffins, Shepard's pie (both vegetarian and meat varieties), chicken enchiladas, and pasta dishes in the freezer. I won't start cooking it until next month as it is cooling down.


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#3 of 30 Old 08-02-2011, 04:01 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Yeah, the heat is killing me! That's why I'm not cooking extra - just putting all leftovers in the freezer. No way can I handle heating up the house more than absolutely necessary when it's 100+ outside.


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#4 of 30 Old 08-02-2011, 09:36 PM
 
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Vegetarian/vegan house here.  Soups, veggie enchiladas, veggie burgers, and more soups.  

 

I need to brainstorm more ideas....

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#5 of 30 Old 08-03-2011, 08:26 AM
 
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I have a couple of friends who do a "supper swap" and I'm planning on doing one before baby comes, probably not until October because we don't have much freezer space.  They get together up to 6 women and make 1 meal per family, so you'd be making 6 times what you usually make and package it to freeze with instructions for reheating.  Depending on the people you are doing it with, you plan on the meals being for about 6 portions (unless of course you have a group with smaller family sizes)....it sounds expensive, and it certainly can be, but then you have 6 frozen meals ready for your freezer!  Even better, double it up and then you have your two weeks worth!

 

It can be a big pain, but it can also be a lot of fun--especially trying new recipes and not having to do all the work!  It's also really nice if you have a like-minded group (vegan, or no sugar, vegetarian, meat-eaters, organic, etc.).

 

That's what I am hoping to organize before baby comes.  thumb.gif

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#6 of 30 Old 08-03-2011, 12:03 PM
 
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Does anyone have friends/family who set up a meal schedule?  We had a friend who organized this our last pregnancy- 5 couples did it, one couple brought a large meal and dessert every other day so it was about 2 weeks worth once we returned from the hospital.  It was awesome- everyone brought delicious, huge meals so there were lots of leftovers for lunches, and the dessert was my favorite part.  It is tricky with dietary restrictions, but we let everyone know what foods we couldn't eat so they knew beforehand.  (we're vegetarian, but now hubby is dairy-free because of allergies).  

I'm hoping I can mention the idea to a friend or neighbor here (we moved cross country) and that they will organize something like this for us this time as well.  I plan to stock our freezer, too but we don't have a huge freezer (oh, I wish we had a chest freezer!)

Maybe if you casually mention it to a mother/MIL/friend, they will be willing to set up an email list of other friends who can work out a schedule!

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#7 of 30 Old 08-03-2011, 02:20 PM
 
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Food trees are AWESOME.  I had one set up through a local parenting group with my last pregnancy.  A system wasn't in place when I moved there, so I set one up and organized food trees for a bunch of other women before I was due.  I know that many churches, LLL chapters, API chapters, and active neighborhoods also do food trees, so you could look into that as well.  Lastly, you can throw a food party where you get a few friends together to cook large batches of a few dishes and you all split them (or it could be just for you).  There is also a great book called Frozen Assets that you could look into for ideas on what to make, how to shop, how to time everything, how to store it, etc.


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#8 of 30 Old 08-03-2011, 03:29 PM - Thread Starter
 
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I might try to organize a food party, that's a great idea! We don't know any other veggie families, though.


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#9 of 30 Old 08-03-2011, 05:37 PM
 
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we organized meals for my friend after she had twins with mealtrain.com which I loved and was easy to use- people sign up for days, mom suggests general times of the day, drop off food only vs visiting, food preferences, etc... 

 

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#10 of 30 Old 08-03-2011, 08:09 PM
 
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Meesh... even if they aren't vegetarian, it doesn't mean they don't have a favorite vegetarian recipe or that they can't figure one out, perhaps with a little help.  wink1.gif


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#11 of 30 Old 08-03-2011, 09:16 PM
 
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This.  We were the only vegetarians for our food tree :)  The five other couples did really great creating veggie dishes!  We had lasagna twice (my fave!), a veggie pot pie, and artichoke ravioli.  I forget the last one :)

 

 

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Originally Posted by Jaimee View Post

Meesh... even if they aren't vegetarian, it doesn't mean they don't have a favorite vegetarian recipe or that they can't figure one out, perhaps with a little help.  wink1.gif



 

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#12 of 30 Old 08-04-2011, 09:14 AM
 
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I have done bulk cooking off and on for many, many years.  My two favorite cookbooks/resources are Once-A-Month Cooking by Mimi Wilson and Mary Beth Lagerborg and the The 30 Day Gourmet (www.30daygourmet.com).  I just checked out the 30 Day Gourmet website and they have a vegetarian e-book (among many other choices.)  Both of these resources offer amazing recipes and take you step-by-step through how to do bulk cooking if you haven't done it before.  Nearly everything can be frozen in zip-top freezer bags and stored in limited space.

 

I have been on bedrest since 17 weeks (and will be until at least 36 weeks) so meal time is already a struggle in our family.  My mom and MIL have both been helping with meals and friends from church have set us up with TakeThemAMeal.com and we get a meal from a friend once a week.  It has been very helpful, mostly for my DH as he has had to pick up ALL of the slack while I am stuck on bedrest.

 

Jen :)

 


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#13 of 30 Old 08-04-2011, 01:20 PM
 
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Love this thread!  We definitely packed the freezer last time and I plan to do it again.  I've been offered meals from others, but since I'm allergic to gluten it's hard for folks to cook for me (and for me to trust their food unfortunately).  I likely will freeze a lot of soups, and then some enchiladas, lasagna, and muffins.  It's so great to have meals ready to go!  Those and my crock pot were the only way dinner was made at home for quite a while with our first!


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#14 of 30 Old 08-04-2011, 02:33 PM
 
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When I set up food trees for other mothers who had allergies (DF, GF, low salycilate, etc.) or restrictions (veg*n, kosher, low sodium, low sugar, etc.) I would post information about the allergy/restriction and offer simple recipe options- something that's hard to mess up.  The family would end up with several of the same dish, but it would be spread out over a couple of weeks and you can always freeze the food to spread it out better, too. 


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#15 of 30 Old 08-04-2011, 04:46 PM
 
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When I had DD I didn't freeze any meals ahead of time, but my MIL brought dinner over every night for a week after we came home, always with plenty of leftovers so the food lasted a loooong time. She also made a few trips to the store for us and brought over veggies and fruits and healthy snacky foods for me to have while I was snuggling the new baby. My sister brought over a couple of frozen meals as well, so it all worked out pretty well.

 

I actually started a meal plan with my friends as they had babies (which all came after mine). We all signed up to bring dinner over every couple of nights for the first couple of weeks after baby was born. I'm hoping they follow my tradition and do the same with me this time!


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#16 of 30 Old 08-04-2011, 06:27 PM
 
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I am also setting aside a little bit of our spending cash each month so that for a few weeks or so after baby arrives we can do the bulk of our grocery shopping (except DD3's goat's milk, which we use WIC checks for) with the store that will deliver our groceries for $15! I figure we'll save up and do like 2 or 3 big shops so we get our $15 worth. The sanity saving will be so worth it.


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#17 of 30 Old 08-05-2011, 07:02 AM
 
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Such great ideas! Do any of you have separate freezers (like a stand-alone one) or do you store all of this food in just your regular fridge/freezer combo? I want to make meals ahead of time but I have no idea how I'd fit it all in our freezer! lol We've contemplated buying a stand-alone one since we'd save a lot of money buying meats in bulk and storing them. Maybe this will give us the extra push to get one!

 

I hope I can come up with a good meal plan. I'm not sure what I should make because I was GFCF before pregnancy but have been able to eat whatever I want ever since the beginning of my 2nd trimester. I don't know if my food intolerances will suddenly come back right after the baby is born. I suppose I should just plan for that... I'll have to start planning cost-effective GFCF meals. Bleh.


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#18 of 30 Old 08-05-2011, 08:27 AM
 
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BirdHappy... I would say it is likely that your intolerances will come back postpartum and beyond that, it's probably a good idea to keep those allergens out of your milk in case baby has allergies as well, especially since gluten allergy (well, celiac) is genetic.  We have two fridge/freezer combos so that we can store extra food.  Here's a random tip... since we just moved here, I was browsing Habitat for Humanity's local website here and they have a ReStore that is full of great slightly used items.  They happen to have a deep freezer for sale, which is what made me think to mention it to you.  Also, check out Craig's List.


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#19 of 30 Old 08-05-2011, 09:45 AM
 
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Thanks for the tips, Jaimee! I have been concerned about the possibility of our baby having the gluten intolerance genes as well; I just had put it out of my mind for a while lately while dealing with other stuff. Thanks for the reminder of why it's so crucial for me to eliminate allergens from my diet besides just for my own sake. I forget about breastmilk carrying allergens. duh.gif I'll really have to work hard these next 3 months at mentally preparing to eliminate gluten and casein from my diet again. I am going to be so cautious about anyone introducing food to my babies within their first 6 months of life because I have read about the higher chance for other health conditions that can occur because of premature gluten introduction in a baby with the genes, especially type 1 diabetes. I'm going to probably be flat out paranoid... eyesroll.gif But I consider myself lucky for having found out about these intolerances in my early-20's so I have experience eliminating things from my diet and it won't be such a difficult adjustment this time around.

 

I don't mean to highjack this thread, but I have another question along these same lines...... Are women supposed to avoid eating nuts while breastfeeding too, even if they don't have a history of allergies to them? I hear a lot of concerns about the increase in severe nut allergies in children these days so I'm wondering if it's just best to avoid feeding babies any sort of peanut butters and such early on or if the mother should eliminate it from her diet entirely too.


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#20 of 30 Old 08-05-2011, 12:43 PM
 
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Quote:
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I don't mean to highjack this thread, but I have another question along these same lines...... Are women supposed to avoid eating nuts while breastfeeding too, even if they don't have a history of allergies to them? I hear a lot of concerns about the increase in severe nut allergies in children these days so I'm wondering if it's just best to avoid feeding babies any sort of peanut butters and such early on or if the mother should eliminate it from her diet entirely too.

You could definitely start another thread with this topic and also you'll find a ton of great information and support in the allergy forum here on MDC.  Some do believe it is best to eliminate nuts from your diet while breastfeeding if there is a history of allergy in the family.  Unlike celiac, other allergies do not tend to be passed down directly.  In other words, you pass along a predisposition to food allergies but not an allergy to specific food items.  So even though you have a casein allergy does not mean baby would (though it is the most common).  So others believe you don't need to avoid the foods yourself while breastfeeding until there appears to be a problem.  I personally followed the allergy recommendations and did not feed my dd tree nuts prior to age two or peanuts prior to age three.  We also held off on the other major allergens until she was over a year old (corn, wheat, soy, uncultured dairy, etc.), but did feed cultured dairy (yogurt, cheese) prior to age one.  Let me know if you have more questions as I have, unfortunately, been through a lot with food allergies with my daughter.
 

 


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#21 of 30 Old 08-08-2011, 12:39 PM
 
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Can someone share their bean/rice veggie burrito recipe with me?  That sounds wonderful. 

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#22 of 30 Old 08-08-2011, 02:21 PM
 
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We make burritos all the time, though we don't freeze them.  But we also make this casserole that we have frozen (though it's so quick that it's one of our favorite go to recipes in a pinch) and then you just need to have tortillas and avocado around to spruce it up.

 

Rice and Bean Casserole

 

INGREDIENTS

  • 1 C long-grain brown rice
  • 1 can black beans
  • 1 C frozen corn
  • ¾ C Salsa (fruit salsa is best)
  • 1 C cheddar cheese
  • Salt and Pepper to taste

 

DIRECTIONS

  1. Cook rice on the stove.
  2. When the rice is cooked combine rice, beans, corn, and salsa in an 8”x8” oiled casserole dish.
  3. Mix together and season with salt and pepper.
  4. Top the mixture with the cheddar cheese.
  5. Cover with foil and bake at 375 degrees for 30 minutes.
  6. Eat with a side of avocado or in a tortilla. Add some fresh jalapeño for spice.

 

We also adore this recipe, though it is more time consuming.  It would freeze fine.  This one you'd want to cook fresh rice and have avocado around as well.  I'm SO excited for tomatillo season here!  We couldn't find them in MD at all.

 

Black Bean and Sweet Potato Enchiladas with Tomatillo Sauce

 

INGREDIENTS

Enchiladas

  • 2 tsp olive oil
  • 1 small onion, diced
  • 2 sweet potatoes (or regular), diced
  • 2 C cooked black beans with a little cooking water (or 1 can black beans)
  • 2 C kale, chopped
  • Sea salt and pepper to taste
  • 2 C tomatillo sauce
  • 10-12 corn tortillas
  • 8 oz sour cream

 

Sauce

  • 8 oz tomatillos (about 10), husked
  • 2 serrano chilies, quartered lengthwise
  • ½ small onion, chunked
  • ¼ tsp Sea salt

 

DIRECTIONS

Preheat oven to 375 degrees

Sauce

  1. Put tomatillos in sauce pan with enough water to cover them.
  2. Bring to a boil, lower heat and simmer until they are a dull green, about 10 minutes
  3. Drain and pureé in blender with remaining ingredients

 

Enchiladas

  1. Heat oil in large skillet.  Add onion and sauté 5-10 minutes or until soft.
  2. Add sweet potatoes.  Cover and cook about 10 minutes.
  3. Stir in beans and greens.  Cover and cook about 5 minutes until greens are wilted.  Add a little water if necessary.
  4. Season with sea salt and pepper to taste.
  5. Cover bottom of 9”x13” baking dish with about one third of the sauce.
  6. Place tortilla on flat surface, smear with sour cream and scoop a line of filling across the tortilla.  Roll tortilla and place in dish seam down.  You may need to heat the tortilla to make it flexible enough to roll.
  7. Repeat until all filling is used.
  8. Cover enchiladas with remaining sauce
  9. Cover pan and bake 20 minutes
  10.  Serve with brown rice and avocado slices

 


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#23 of 30 Old 08-08-2011, 09:15 PM
 
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I'm not too much of a freezer as we don't have a stand alone one but I like to make rich dishes like boeuf bourguignon or coq au vin to freeze for later. I try to use the best ingridients I can get and make it kind of a luxury dish, all my husband has to do is pick up a crusty loaf of bread and some greens for salad and I feel like its total comfort food.  I guess if its kind of a "treat" then I won't forget its back there when the time comes.

We're not even that big on meat, I do like to make soup its like an obsession for me so theres always some of that ready to go.

 

Also homemade pasta sauce, especially bologese and butternut squash sauce. Also, I haven't made it from scratch in a while but even my 2 year old has come to appreciate a mild curry. WholeFoods has some great jar sauces and if I'm adding a protein at least I can cook that, add it with veggies, and make a huge batch and freeze for later just add rice.


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#24 of 30 Old 08-09-2011, 03:05 PM
 
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DDCC Yummmmeee sounds so good the sweet potato enchiladas!  this is definatley going on my freezer stash!  and i want to make some tonight!
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Jaimee View Post

We make burritos all the time, though we don't freeze them.  But we also make this casserole that we have frozen (though it's so quick that it's one of our favorite go to recipes in a pinch) and then you just need to have tortillas and avocado around to spruce it up.

 

Rice and Bean Casserole

 

INGREDIENTS

  • 1 C long-grain brown rice
  • 1 can black beans
  • 1 C frozen corn
  • ¾ C Salsa (fruit salsa is best)
  • 1 C cheddar cheese
  • Salt and Pepper to taste

 

DIRECTIONS

  1. Cook rice on the stove.
  2. When the rice is cooked combine rice, beans, corn, and salsa in an 8”x8” oiled casserole dish.
  3. Mix together and season with salt and pepper.
  4. Top the mixture with the cheddar cheese.
  5. Cover with foil and bake at 375 degrees for 30 minutes.
  6. Eat with a side of avocado or in a tortilla. Add some fresh jalapeño for spice.

 

We also adore this recipe, though it is more time consuming.  It would freeze fine.  This one you'd want to cook fresh rice and have avocado around as well.  I'm SO excited for tomatillo season here!  We couldn't find them in MD at all.

 

Black Bean and Sweet Potato Enchiladas with Tomatillo Sauce

 

INGREDIENTS

Enchiladas

  • 2 tsp olive oil
  • 1 small onion, diced
  • 2 sweet potatoes (or regular), diced
  • 2 C cooked black beans with a little cooking water (or 1 can black beans)
  • 2 C kale, chopped
  • Sea salt and pepper to taste
  • 2 C tomatillo sauce
  • 10-12 corn tortillas
  • 8 oz sour cream

 

Sauce

  • 8 oz tomatillos (about 10), husked
  • 2 serrano chilies, quartered lengthwise
  • ½ small onion, chunked
  • ¼ tsp Sea salt

 

DIRECTIONS

Preheat oven to 375 degrees

Sauce

  1. Put tomatillos in sauce pan with enough water to cover them.
  2. Bring to a boil, lower heat and simmer until they are a dull green, about 10 minutes
  3. Drain and pureé in blender with remaining ingredients

 

Enchiladas

  1. Heat oil in large skillet.  Add onion and sauté 5-10 minutes or until soft.
  2. Add sweet potatoes.  Cover and cook about 10 minutes.
  3. Stir in beans and greens.  Cover and cook about 5 minutes until greens are wilted.  Add a little water if necessary.
  4. Season with sea salt and pepper to taste.
  5. Cover bottom of 9”x13” baking dish with about one third of the sauce.
  6. Place tortilla on flat surface, smear with sour cream and scoop a line of filling across the tortilla.  Roll tortilla and place in dish seam down.  You may need to heat the tortilla to make it flexible enough to roll.
  7. Repeat until all filling is used.
  8. Cover enchiladas with remaining sauce
  9. Cover pan and bake 20 minutes
  10.  Serve with brown rice and avocado slices

 



 


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#25 of 30 Old 08-09-2011, 06:15 PM
 
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Me too! In fact, I grabbed the few ingredients I didn't have at the store and am making it tomorrow!
 

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Originally Posted by rustydaisies View Post

DDCC Yummmmeee sounds so good the sweet potato enchiladas!  this is definatley going on my freezer stash!  and i want to make some tonight!
 



 



 


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#26 of 30 Old 08-10-2011, 10:36 AM
 
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Mmmm... let me know how they turn out!  Can't wait to have our dishes so we can make these soon too!


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#27 of 30 Old 08-10-2011, 07:20 PM
 
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I made the enchiladas tonight. Yummy!! I used spinach instead of kale because I had some leftover from Monday's quiche. I also added cumin and chili powder, and put sone shredded cheese in when I stuffed the tortillas. It was so good and healthy! I will definitely make it again!

Of course my 9 and 6 year old wouldn't touch it, but that's pretty usual around here.

Amanda, mom to dsd (16), dd (11), dd (8), and ds (born 11/12/11).
 

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#28 of 30 Old 08-18-2011, 03:46 PM
 
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Bumping this thread to post some recipes. I hope everyone else will, too! Nothing motivates me to cook more than trying something new. smile.gif

 

Here's one of my favorite stews. It just says autumn to me. There are only two of us home for dinner tonight, so I made a big pot and am freezing the rest. I think it's from The Garden of Vegan, but not positive.

 

African Sweet Potato and Peanut Stew

Ingredients

1 tbsp olive oil

1 onion, finely chopped

1 green bell pepper, chopped

2-3 cloves garlic (I always use more)

2 tsp brown sugar

1 tsp fresh ginger, finely chopped

1/2 tsp cumin

1/2 tsp cinnamon

1/4 tsp cayenne

1.5 lbs sweet potatoes, peeled and chopped

1-14.5oz can diced tomatoes (I use fire roasted with garlic)

1.5 cups veg broth

salt to taste

1-15oz can kidney beans, rinsed and drained

2 tbsp peanut butter

1/2 cup chopped, roasted peanuts

 

**A note on the spices: I always use much more, especially of the cumin. It balances out the sweetness. I'm not really a recipe follower; I prefer to wing it! I just posted the original amounts.

 

Directions

Heat oil over medium heat. Add onion and cook till soft, about 5-7 min. Add pepper and garlic and cook for 5 min. Stir in brown sugar, ginger, cinnamon, cumin, and cayenne. Add sweet potatoes and stir to coat. Stir in tomatoes, broth, and salt. Bring to boil, then reduce heat, cover, and simmer for 20 min. After 20 min, add kidney beans. Cook for 10 more min or until veggies are soft. (I say the longer the better here!)

 

Place the peanut butter in a small bowl and blend with about 1/4 cup of broth, stirring until smooth. Add to stew. If you want a creamier/ thicker stew, blend a cup or so in the blender and then add back to the stew. 

 

Sprinkle with chopped peanuts and serve. 


Amanda, mom to dsd (16), dd (11), dd (8), and ds (born 11/12/11).
 

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#29 of 30 Old 08-18-2011, 04:03 PM
 
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One more: I love making homemade pizza. I've tried lots of crust recipes, and this one is my favorite. It freezes very well. It's so easy to just take some out of the freezer, let it thaw, and roll it out. Each recipe makes two large crusts. We need both to feed everyone, but if your kids are younger or you have a smaller family, one may be fine. I plan to double the recipe each time I make it for the rest of the pregnancy and freeze the extra. Be sure to split it in half and freeze them separately so you have individual servings.

 

This is adapted from AllRecipes.com. I'm winging the directions because I didn't bother to write them down!

 

Jay's Signature Pizza Crust

Ingredients

2 1/4 tsp yeast

1/2 tsp brown sugar

1 1/2 cups warm water

1 tsp salt

2 tbsp olive oil

3 1/3 cups all purpose flour

 

Directions

In a large bowl, mix together yeast, brown sugar, and warm water. Cover, and let sit for 10 min (proof the yeast). Mix in salt, olive oil, and 2 1/2 cups of flour. Mix the dough, adding flour as needed, until it can be turned onto a well-floured surface. Knead the dough, continuing to add flour, until it is no longer sticky. (Sometimes I use more than the 3 1/3 cups called for.) Form into a ball, place in a bowl, cover, and let sit until doubled in size (about an hour).

 

After an hour, punch down the dough. Preheat oven to 425. Let the dough rest for a few minutes, and then turn it onto the counter. Split it in two equal pieces and roll each out. Place on a pizza pan, and let it rest for a few minutes again. Prick a few times with a fork and put in the bottom rack of the oven for 5-10 min. (Check it to see that it has gotten a bit firm.) Take it out and put your toppings on. Cook for 8-10 min, checking to see that cheese is melted and toppings are done. Enjoy!

 

 


Amanda, mom to dsd (16), dd (11), dd (8), and ds (born 11/12/11).
 

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#30 of 30 Old 08-20-2011, 09:38 AM
 
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MMM... finally fresh, local tomatillos are available at our farmer's market and our stuff is unpacked so it's time to make some enchiladas!  Thanks for the recipes, Amanda!


Mama to Avalon 1/07 waterbirth.jpg, Austin 1/10 in between uc.jpgand Avery 12/11  h20homebirth.gif
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