more America pizza - broccoli raab, potato, rosemary, mozzarella, fontina

more America pizza - broccoli raab, potato, rosemary, mozzarella, fontina

America shaped pizza for the second homemade pizza night this year! (Pizza on the grill!)

America shaped pizza for the second homemade pizza night this year! (Pizza on the grill!)

@smittenkitchen’s blueberry crumb cake (made with 1/2 oat flour).

@smittenkitchen’s blueberry crumb cake (made with 1/2 oat flour).

swirly, buttery cross between bread and doughnut

swirly, buttery cross between bread and doughnut

swirly, buttery cross between bread and doughnut

swirly, buttery cross between bread and doughnut

chocolate krantz cake happening today #ottolenghi

chocolate krantz cake happening today #ottolenghi

Deep dark chocolate cake to make up for leaving @hthackersey home alone while I take Yudi to America.

Deep dark chocolate cake to make up for leaving @hthackersey home alone while I take Yudi to America.

Yudi’s molasses muffins

Feeding Yudi has been a challenge because he fusses about everything we try to feed him unless it’s fruit, bread/baked goods, or something we’re eating. His nanny prepares meals for him that are almost always Indian. He has this move down that’s become almost a reflex, of screwing up his nose, turning his head away, and extending his arm to push away the spoon (and the hand holding the spoon). It’s frustrating that mealtimes, which give me so much pleasure, are for Yudi a source of irritation. 

I’m hoping that (somehow) things will change when I bring him to America in July. I’m going to let him have whatever I’m eating. I’m not going to force him to eat if he fusses. Although baby-led weaning sounded appealing, his nanny (who has worked with many babies before) seemed confident about the traditional methods of spoon-feeding and my mom and mom-in-law agreed with her, since it is what they were used to doing with their kids. And a lot of Indian food needs to be spoon fed. Yudi’s a vegetarian so how can he eat his main sources of protein - daal (lentil soup) and dahi (yogurt) without a spoon? We’re encourage Yudi to hold the spoon and try feeding himself but that he’s only interested in doing that for the first few bites. After that, he’s most interested in making a mess with the spoon and whatever liquid we’re feeding him. 

Food Yudi does like: these molasses wheat germ muffins that are supposed to be wheat bran muffins but I had wheat germ so that’s what I used. They’re slightly bitter from molasses and quite dark. They contain prunes, which Yudi adores, and cinnamon, and orange zest. In fact, we all like these muffins. I make a recipe and freeze the baked muffins, and Yudi has one as his snack every few days. He also likes picking up pieces of it and watching it crumble as he squeezes it.

Molasses Wheat Germ Muffins
adapted from Good to the Grain, by Kim Boyce
makes 18 muffins

butter for the tins
1 cup orange juice
1 1/2 cups pitted prunes

dry mix:
1/2 cup amaranth flour
1 1/2 cups whole wheat flour
2 Tbsp. dark brown sugar
1 1/4 tsp. baking soda
1/2 tsp. salt
1/2 tsp. cinnamon

wet mix:
1 1/2 cups wheat germ
2 cups buttermilk (or 2 cups milk and 2 Tbsp. vinegar for homemade buttermilk)
1/2 cup molasses
3 Tbsp. unsalted butter, melted and cooled slightly
1 egg
1 Tbsp. orange zest

1. To make the prune jam, bring the orange juice and prunes to a boil in a small saucepan. Turn the flame off, cover and let steep until the prunes are plump and have absorbed some of the juice, about 30 minutes. Use an immersion blender to puree the prunes and juice in the pan until smooth.

2. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Rub two muffin tins (each with a 12 muffin capacity) with butter.

3. Measure the wheat germ in a medium bowl. Pour the buttermilk on top and stir; let the wheat germ soften.

4. Sift the dry ingredients into a large bowl, pouring back into the bowl any bits of grain or other ingredients that may remain in the sifter, and set aside.

5. In a small bowl, whisk the wet ingredients together with 1/2 cup of the prune ham, making sure the egg is thoroughly mixed in. Add this mixture to the softened brain, stir, then add the entire west mixture to the dry mixture, stirring gently to form a batter. 

6. Scoop the batter into 18 muffin cups. The batter should be slightly mounded above the edge. 

7. Bake for 25-30 minutes, rotating the pans halfway through. The muffins are ready to come out when their bottoms are a dark golden colour. These muffins are best eaten once cooled. I usually freeze the whole lot of them and take them out for snack time as needed. 

Swiss chard, saffron, and potatoes inside an herb omelette (Ottolenghi)

Swiss chard, saffron, and potatoes inside an herb omelette (Ottolenghi)

Sichuan hotpot by @hthackersey

Sichuan hotpot by @hthackersey

@thesmitten’s oatmeal chocolate chip cookies

@thesmitten’s oatmeal chocolate chip cookies

homemade pizza night is my favorite night and it happens only twice a year @hthackersey

homemade pizza night is my favorite night and it happens only twice a year @hthackersey

Yudi and the bhaji-wala. If only he liked to eat vegetables.

Yudi and the bhaji-wala. If only he liked to eat vegetables.

Okonomiyaki prep. Underneath the mushrooms, peppers, green onions and cabbage is an egg and rice flour batter.

Okonomiyaki prep. Underneath the mushrooms, peppers, green onions and cabbage is an egg and rice flour batter.

Best crepe of the night (and there were four between the two of us): the Savoyard - made with egg, potatoes, green leaves, and raw milk reblochon cheese. (Actually there was supposed to be bacon instead of the egg but we asked them to substitute.)  (at Briezh Cafe)

Best crepe of the night (and there were four between the two of us): the Savoyard - made with egg, potatoes, green leaves, and raw milk reblochon cheese. (Actually there was supposed to be bacon instead of the egg but we asked them to substitute.) (at Briezh Cafe)

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