From the moment I announced the impending life in my womb, I was asked, “so are you going to blog about baby and kid food?” My answer was always an adamant, “nah, I don’t think so.”
Why? I guess I figure there are enough mommy bloggers and mommy food bloggers. I wasn’t really interested in turning my blog into another daily dose of parenting. Not that I don’t enjoy reading those sorts of things. I do! I think those women do it better than I could.
And besides, I didn’t envision any immediate changes in the kinds of foods we were eating. For the better part of a year, lil’ munchkins thrive on a liquid diet and then very simple foods. And then if you want, and they want, they’ll pretty much eat what you eat. That’s where we are now – but I’m not getting too excited about it. It could only be a matter of days before those real toddler tendencies kick in and she decides to eat nothing but fruit and oatmeal. Or, nothing at all. I’ve heard all the stories about good-eaters-turned-picky for no apparent reason. If we’re exempt, we’re probably just lucky.
Right now I can’t consider myself a very good judge about what’s kid-friendly or not. All I can tell you is that mine gobbled this up. And I sat there, marveling at this colorful array of orange squash and deep purple cabbage, tossed with tahini and almond butter and tofu, making its way down her shirt, massaged into her hair, and yes, in her mouth too. Eventually all in her mouth. ‘Cause even when she signs “all done”, I know she’s really not yet. We’re still working on that one. But boy is she excited to use it during meal time.
I can thank a couple friends for pushing me to get this up on the blog. Excited by my new spiralizer, I brought this dish (or one very close to it) to a dinner party last week and it was all gobbled up.
It was also quickly decided that every mom at the table needed a spiralizer, and I have to agree. You don’t have to convince me that moms deserve fun new toys too! Especially ones that help everyone enjoy a healthy meal together.
Butternut Squash Noodles with Sweet Tahini Clementine Sauce
Yield: 3 servings
This sauce is so yummy you'll want to eat it all with a spoon; but don't worry, the recipe yields enough for extra. Thin it out with some extra vinegar to make a tasty and satisfying salad dressing.
If you don't have a spiralizer, you can grate the butternut squash into long shreds. The result will be a bit different but still satisfying.
1lb package firm tofu
salt and pepper
1/4 cup tahini
1/4 cup creamy raw almond butter
2 tablespoons pure maple syrup
2 tablespoons unseasoned rice vinegar
2 tablespoons reduced sodium tamari
1/4 cup water
3 teaspoons grated fresh ginger
1 clementine, peeled
1 medium butternut squash, long neck part only, peeled
1/2 small head red cabbage, thinly sliced
2 teaspoons coconut oil
fresh cilantro, for garnish
1/2 batch sauce
Preheat oven to 500ºF. Spray a large ceramic baking dish with cooking spray. Slice tofu into 1/4-1/2" cubes and arrange in a single layer. Spray with additional cooking spray and sprinkle with salt and pepper. Bake for 15 minutes. Turn with a spatula and bake for another 15-20 minutes, turning every 5-10 minutes, until golden brown on all sides. Remove from oven.
Combine all ingredients in a small food processor or blender and process until smooth.
Prepare the butternut squash noodles with a spiralizer according to manufacturer's directions.
Heat coconut oil over medium-high heat in a large nonstick skillet or wok. Saute butternut squash noodles and cabbage until softened, about 7-10 minutes. Add tofu and half of the sauce. (Save remaining for another use.) Stir to coat and cook until heated through, 2-3 minutes. Divide among serving bowls and garnish with cilantro.