Monday, 9 July 2007

Fish chowder trickery

I have been whipping up all sorts of culinary delights for Betty recently. Amongst other things, Betty has dined on chicken casserole, beef stew, and fish with carrot and orange, in the last week. And for these recipes I have been sourcing the best possible ingredients for my precious darling daughter. I have visited the local butcher to purchase one small organic chicken fillet, the fishmonger to purchase one small fillet of cod, and the greengrocer to purchase one small organic apple. I think I have built up quite a reputation in the local town in the last few days. Not only because of my miniature purchases but also my fussiness - each shop assistant has suffered a grilling from me about where exactly their produce has come from and how the chicken/fish/apple tree was treated. A recent cashflow crisis has meant that while Betty has been dining on fresh, seasonal, organic food, Tom and I have been dining on pot noodles.

Yesterday while I was feeding Betty her fish, carrot and orange purée, it was so delicious, I found myself feeding myself every other spoonful – one for me, one for Betty. It started off as a game to encourage Betty to eat it. However, Betty didn’t need any encouragement to eat it. I was just being a mean, selfish mummy and depriving my baby of her daily nutritional requirements, for my own enjoyment. About half way through, poor Betty dared to look away for one moment and I said: ‘Oop have you had enough sweetheart?’ before quickly shovelling the rest into my gob. When Betty realised that there was no more food she burst into tears. She, unsurprisingly, was still hungry. So I had to very quickly whip up something else to fill the hole.

Later on, as there was a little bit of cod left over in the fridge, I decided to make an ‘adult’ version (by adding salt) of this baby purée and serve it up for mine and Tom’s supper. I had to slightly improvise and use marmalade instead of an orange, but I felt very chuffed with myself for my creativity. When it was ready, Tom came to the table and asked what it was. I couldn’t really tell him that it was a baby purée and so I told him it was ‘fish chowder’. He said it looked delicious and started tucking in. He commented that it tasted ‘very fruity’. I proudly told him it was marmalade. He took about two more spoonfuls and then politely told me that he just couldn’t eat it, and that it wasn’t one of my ‘finer kitchen moments’ and would I mind if he made himself a bacon sandwich instead. I defensively told him that Betty had loved it earlier. He then said: ‘Have you just tried to feed me baby purée?’ I proudly said ‘yes’.

Later, when I was talking to my mum on the phone, I mentioned that I had made the fish, carrot and orange purée for me and Tom, because I thought it was delicious and also because there had been a spare bit of cod left in the fridge. She patiently explained to me that Betty should be starting to eat what we eat, and not the other way round.

22 comments:

Bel said...

Looks delicious to me! Except I don't like sweet things in my hot meals. Maybe your man is the same?

Bel

Beccers said...

I love what your Mum said, that's really funny. I like that you tried to pass it off as proper adult food too. A tip from a baby-owning friend of mine is to freeze the left overs for days when making something fresh is a bit too much effort.

Lou said...

I can relate to this post in so many ways!! The very same book that you use is the one that I treat like my guide to life!! Anna particulary loves the Chicken with Sweet Potato and Apple/Grapes. One day, Anna's nanny was at my house while I was feeding Anna and started to question the ingredients, thinking it sounded rather odd! Then she tried it...and asked whether there was an adult version of the recipe!!

Rob Clack said...

I've done this when skint and hungry: par-boil some potatoes for about 5 mins. Meanwhile, chop and fry some onions, garlic and a few rashers of smoked streaky bacon. Drain the potatoes and combine with the rest in the frying pan. Cover and continue cooking on a low/med heat until the potatoes are done - 10 mins?

Ladybird said...

That was hilarious!
I always ended up finishing my kids' leftover babyfood but my husband zealously avoided them.

Sparx said...

Very funny! I made the spud a tomato / garlic sauce for pasta and ended up eating it the other night. He's starting now to eat what we eat so when I cook, I put salt in last and before I do, I take out some for him for the next day. He loves feeding himself so anything like pasta which he can get his mitts into is a good thing!

Annie said...

I could do with that book! My imagination in creating toddler and baby meals is somewhat limited. I tend to offer them what we eat and they eat it for the most part. I steer clear of giving them anything too spicy - so when we're having a spicy dish I run out of ideas to offer them as alternatives.

I'll have to see if they have that book over here.

Off to explore more of your blog :)

The Good Woman said...

In Zambia, Bambi was weaned onto a purely organic diet. Here I took one look at the cost and decided that her consititution was now robust enough to deal with 'normal' (which is actually, probably less normal) food. But I still fear I'll tuck her in one night to find she glows in the dark...

DJ Kirkby said...

Elsie Your posts are just great! I think all women planing on having a baby should read your blog. I direct our pregnant teens to it as part of their parent craft classes as I think your blog has just the right combination of humour and honesty, without being 'preachy', and is usualy a real eye opner for them.

Elsie Button said...

DJ Kirkby - oh my god! Really? I am so chuffed! thank you so much - you have made my day!

btw: sorry i haven't had a chance to catch up with other blogs in the last few days - am manic at the moment organising Betty's naming ceremony which is this saturday - there is so much to do - am very stressed! but i will defo catch up after the weekend.

Stay at home dad said...

Lol. You're not catering after the naming thingy are you?!

Drunk Mummy said...

Elsie - I have this wild, recurrent dream where Annabel Karmel's children are exposed as McDonalds addicts, who chomp on bags of Porky Scratchings between visits to the Golden Arches.
Maybe it's just me.

Elsie Button said...

i've had the same dream about Gillian Mckeith's children...

Motheratlarge said...

This is very funny, as I am still battling to get The Bean to eat the food I make her.

On subject of food, is it okay that I tagged you in a food meme? Details are on my site on posting Food, Food...

lady macleod said...

LOL very creative indeed.

Elsie Button said...

M@L - of course! - i will come have a look...

DJ Kirkby said...

ah yes but you have been unknowlingly shouldering the responsibilty for guiding 'wayward' teenagers... can you cope with the strain? Lol, they are good kids really, just need a bit of sensible guidance and an awareness of what real motherhood is all about, babies are not dolls and although they are hard work the benefits sure outweigh the strife! Your blog effortlessly portrays all this. (Thanks)

DJ Kirkby said...

p.s. good luck for tomorrow, may the sun shine for Betty on her special day.

dulwichmum said...

Ha, ha, good for you. I made all of the lovely Annabel's creations for my darling son and he would not eat any of it. I made new ones every day and was left to eat them all myself. Delicious. all he would eat for months was melon and strawberry.

DM

jenny said...

I love that last line-- Betty should be eating what you eat and not the other way around! Too funny!!

I started out making my own baby food puree and there is a nifty baby food grinder you can buy where you put your own food in there and turn the crank and it purees the food. If I made something that wasnt suitable for baby, I put in fruit or cooked vegetables in there. Much cheaper than buying a thousand baby food jars and hey! Less consumerism going into the trash!

You're a good momma! But Tom might not think you're such a good wife after that chowder bit! LOL! xo

Suffolkmum said...

Great post. I so remember those days of organic, slaved-over treats for the little ones and beans on toast for us. Just been catching up as I've been away - congratulations on being an official stay at home Mum. Your post made me laugh - I had all those dreams about creative projects too - now I really need to return to work and will probably end up having to go back to the same old same old. Not wishing to put you off though - lots of people I now have managed to start again in different fields or started their own businesses etc. They're just obviously more enterprising than me!

DJ Kirkby said...

*Ahem!* Waiting for a new post from you please...