Tag Archives: health

Easy Instant Pot Beef Stew

I hesitate to call anything Otto’s favorite. He’s only 9 months old and unable to speak for himself, after all. But, he loves this stew. I mean, he devours it. The first time I made it for him about a month ago, I puréed it really well because he was still getting the hang of swallowing solids, and he gobbled it without hesitation. Tonight, I didn’t blend it quite as much. He was just as enthusiastic.

Otto literally leans forward in his high-chair, mouth open, eagerly waiting for the next spoonful. Sometimes he grabs at the spoon and pulls it towards his face. I also let him have a few carrots from my bowl, not blended, to pick up with his fingers tonight. He happily ate them, but also continued to lean forward for more of the purée.

To be clear, Otto does not do this with other foods. So, I think it’s safe to say, this super easy dish is his favorite. Brent and I really like it, too. Like many Instant Pot recipes, all you have to do is put the ingredients in and let the gadget work its magic! We hope you and your family, however young or old, will appreciate its simplicity and delicious flavor as well.

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Gluten-free Granola for Breastfeeding Moms

Breastfeeding can be a challenging experience at any stage. If you’re also a working mom, pumping adds another layer of (possible) complications. Some weeks, my supply seems just fine. Other weeks, I feel like I just can’t pump enough breastmilk and I worry my dwindling freezer stash will run out before Otto is ready to completely wean. Sure, we’re introducing solid foods (we started doing that two months ago, when Otto turned 6 months old). But, he’s still unsure. So his primary source of nutrition is, and will likely remain for some time, my breastmilk.

We crafted this granola recipe during one of those weeks I was feeling insecure about my milk supply, and it seemed to help! It’s specially designed with ingredients that help breastmilk production—nuts, chia seeds, and flaxseed—and uses only minimal added sugar (maple syrup) along with cinnamon (known to help regulate blood sugar) in the hopes of preventing that sugar high and crash that can happen after eating super sweet snacks.

Even if you’re not breastfeeding, this gluten-free granola is a quick and easy way to satisfy that craving you might have for a crunchy topping to your non-dairy yogurt (or regular yogurt, if you tolerate dairy well). We hope you enjoy it!

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Roasted Tomato and Olive Mediterranean Salad

As summer turns to fall, I find myself wanting roasted things—Roasted Adobo Chicken, Roasted Root Vegetables, etc. But, as is usual for the Mid-Atlantic region, we still have warm and humid days occurring regularly. So, cold salads still hold their appeal for me.

This recipe takes deliciously roasted tomatoes and olives and blends them, chilled, with refreshing cucumber and artichoke. It seemed only natural to take a mediterranean turn, and somehow it feels like the perfect late-summer/early-autumn side dish. We hope you enjoy it!

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Gluten Free Walnut and Zucchini Bread

Last week, we shared with you a recipe for Zucchini Fritters, which we developed using a large home-grown zucchini given to us by a friend who recently visited us to meet Otto. Today, I’m excited to share with you the second recipe that we created using that same zucchini. (Seriously, it was a really big zucchini.)

This zucchini bread is a twist on a childhood favorite of mine—a twist that’s specifically good for lactating moms, like myself. Now that I’m back to work and Otto is with his nanny, it would be easy to for stress and lack of contact with my baby allow my body to stop producing breastmilk. But I’m determined to give Otto breastmilk as long as I possibly can, so I’m pumping regularly and consuming galactagogues whenever possible. (A galactagogue is a substance that increases milk supply; common ones are oats, walnuts, and fenugreek.)

Whether you’re a lacking mom or not, I hope you’ll enjoy this unique zucchini bread recipe. Oh, and one last thing: Yes, I realize that oats are not “paleo” in the strictest sense; but we aren’t paleo perfectionists. For me, gluten-free oats are close enough!

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Asian-Inspired Chimichurri Roast

Chimichurri is one of my favorite marinades for steak, especially cuts that typically are less tender. The combination of fresh herbs, garlic, vinegar, and oil provide a vibrant smell and satisfying taste. Having experimented with variations over the past few weeks, we’re excited to share this Asian-inspired version with you. Adding Thai basil and Thai chilies adds a great depth of flavor and spiciness we know you’ll love.

When cooking this pot roast slowly in a skillet, the bottom gets a hard sear, similar to burnt ends on smoked meats (without the dryness). That said, if you’d like to minimize that hard sear, I recommend adding 1 cup of beef or chicken stock to the skillet. This may accelerate the cooking time; so checking the temperature at 10 minute intervals will be important. However you choose to cook this meal, we hope you’ll enjoy it.

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