Archive for the ‘iBaby’ Category

Since discovering Food Matters and Bittman’s philosophy I have cooked pretty much every meal we have eaten. I have cooked more meals in the last month than I have in the last year. I am also off beef. I am one of those people that never really considered food sources all that much, I grew up around cattle and I certainly understand the concept but never thought about it much and now I can’t stop thinking about it. I tried to cook a small roast last week, the entire flat smelled like ass and when it was done I sliced it, nearly hurled, gave Mary her portion and put the rest in the freezer, I couldn’t bear to eat it. I am not sure if it is temporary or not but the thought of eating dead cow is too much. I don’t feel that way about pork or chicken, although it has always seemed weird to me to make chickens into food. Hogs do seem like they are meant to be eaten for some reason, they just look like a food source to me. Same with fish.
My report on this week is much more grains and veggies. I don’t think I have had any beef at all. Mary does better right now with casserole -type dishes so there has been pasta or rice or some sort of grain every evening. Lunch is usually salad type stuff or fruit or melon and breakfast is cereal. I am feeling pretty good about it all but far from having it well in hand. The baby is supposed to come early next week so after that we can get down to it. Mary has always been a healthy eater and wants to teach Molly good eating habits. I have totally bought into this iCook-centric philosophy and I hope to be completely on track by my birthday in May.
I cannot get over my fingernails.


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Mary has been retaining water and this is not good two weeks from delivery. I remember Carly telling me her French friends eat a lot of leek soup during pregnancy and supposedly that is one reason why French Women Don’t Get Fat as well. I do understand the leeks work as a natural diuretic, I am not sure I can get Mary to eat this, maybe with a bit of butter or sausage. It is near 90F here in Dallas so it does seem to be time to do a spring cleaning.

1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
2 leeks, white and light green parts washed and sliced into 1/4-inch slices
2 cups chopped yellow onion-I omitted this
1/2 teaspoon sea salt
3 cloves garlic, minced
about 1 pound of potatoes, peeled and cubed
4 cups vegetable stock
a bit of fresh dill
1. Heat a 4-quart soup pot over medium heat and add the oil. If you are using sausage or bacon saute this now and use less oil.
2. Add the leeks, onion, and sea salt and saute for about 5 minutes, stirring often, until the onion begins to turn translucent.
3. Add the garlic and stir well. Cook for 1 minute more.
4. Add the potatoes and vegetable stock, cover, and bring to a boil. Reduce heat to simmer. Cook 20 minutes.
5. Puree in whatever way works best for you and reheat if needed.
Sprinkle in some chopped dill. This would also be a good time to add in some cream or half and half, butter or shaved parmigiano-reggiano if you like.
Serves 4 – 6
*Recipe adapted from The Great American Detox Diet, by Alex Jamieson

*photo from How Stuff Works

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Mary had an OB visit with sonogram last Friday, no big deal, just one more as we had 5 weeks to her due date of March 29. Carly had predicted the 14th and I haha lol’ed in her virtual face. As the doctor is yammering on about this and that I hear the words two weeks early. Wait, what? Back up missy (I think she is like 20 seriously) wtf did you just say?
Mary has had high blood pressure throughout and apparantly this prompted the decision they had neglected to share. Sure I knew there was a baby coming but we had FIVE weeks, that is a really long time. THREE weeks however which is now two is not a long time. I decided to approach this project like any other, there is equipment to assemble, a schedule to write and details to sort.
I do best under pressure as that is how you run a kitchen, make all your big decisions on the fly while there are pots bubbling over, you are almost out of eggs/milk/bread, a busboy is too drunk to work, waitress has pms, your main cook is in jail, the backup is his brother/cousin/dad who is the only person on earth that can go bail him out despite the fact he has at least 10 other relatives living on the same block and yes, that is precisely the moment to decide you want to add a new vegetable to the menu.
We needed lists, and like any successful person knows, you do not need to have all the answers but you do need to know when you need help where to get it and have no fear of asking for it. To Mary’s horror I accosted a lovely new mom in Babies R Us, she had a 5 year old that seemed to have come through it alright and the baby in her cart was not screaming like the rest of the kids in there. She was calm, thin and perky, coiffed and even had makeup on so she seemed the perfect person to ask. Excuse me, can you tell me what she -pointing at the duplex standing next to me- cannot possibly do without the first week home?
She looked at me for a second like I was crazy and I said okay, it has been 23 years since I did this and she knows as much about babies as my handbag, so if you can spare a minute I would be so grateful. And she did. When she said are you going to nurse, we both went stiff as we figured the breast nazi propaganda would come shooting out. Mary meekly said no, but she said oh I didn’t either, I wanted to hug her and buy her a car or something.
I had no idea, I mean I know I did it before but she told us so many things I never would have thought of like diswasher bins and Baby Water, yes they have water for babies, changing pads, lots of wipes and baby detergent…ohhh yes that is coming back to me now…so I think we are ready.
The necessary equipment is either assembled or will be soon, car seat installed in car, cradle fitted with adorable linens, mobiles in place, monitor charged and at the ready. Family members are on standby, hospital tour taken, relative propaganda and information read. The bags are packed, numbers loaded into iPhones and Blackberries.
The line is set up, the prep is done, clothes washed, bins filled, we have backups of hot items like diapers, bows, socks and onesies. Everything is organized, labeled and within easy reach of the pass. Jean Philipe, open Hell’s Kitchen!

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