Cooking for New Parents

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Cooking for New Parents

I will never forget the meals that were delivered to our doorstep more than three years ago when our son was born. Miraculously they just kept arriving. I remember many of these meals in great detail and the joy of eating them. I particularly remember the giant box my friend Ellen brought. She had made not one, but two meals. There were warm cookies and a bouquet of daffodils. I thought I had died and gone to heaven.

As you know I cook–I am a fast cook, I like to cook, I’m not daunted by cooking. However, as everyone told me, I was completely unfit and unable to cook right after Ellis was born. I don’t think I really cooked for the first six weeks. It seems so hard to imagine now but babies, and particularly first babies I imagine, are all-consuming, especially for the mother who usually is nursing what seems like all the time. I remember a day when a banana peel sat on the counter all day because I never managed to get it into the compost bucket!

One of my dearest friends just had a baby and today is my day to cook for her and her family. I’m not sure  I’m going to muster two meals but a hearty one it will be. I just made the Turnip and Turnip Greens Soup putting to use those sweet, tender, and bright white turnips that are gracing our markets at the moment. The greens are fresh and wonderful to incorporate in this soup. It is spring  in a bowl!  I add a few squeezes of lemon juice and a couple of tablespoons of heavy cream at the end. And I use my homemade Veggie Bouillon instead of chicken stock, but otherwise I follow this recipe from Culinate.com closely.

I am also just made a savory bread pudding with lots of herbs, carrots, onions, chard, and extra sharp cheddar. It’s good warm or room temperature. It keeps well and will be a rich and hearty accompaniment to the soup. So maybe it will turn into two meals after all.

And since I prefer meals with dessert and nursing mommies need all the calories they can get, there will also be a quick jam tart that I read about on one of my favorite blogs, Smitten Kitchen, this morning.

I had intended to work today–as in plan class menus, review my marketing plan, organize finance stuff, edit my website–however, since I’ve chosen cooking as my line of work, I think I AM working today. And I can’t think of anything I’d rather be doing.

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  1. Sarah says:

    You are really good at this. I’m impressed over and over again. M/Gr

  2. Carol Boutard says:

    Don’t add any salt to the bread pudding. If I recall new motherhood, her tears from gratitude and exhaustion will cover the bowl.

  3. Erin Kane says:

    I’m the dear friend who was graced with Katherine’s meal today. It couldn’t have arrived at a better time. My daughter arrived 6 weeks early and currently resides in the NICU at St. Vincent’s – today, like so many days, ended in tears and a feeling of complete helplessness. Thankfully, my own sustenance was not something I had to consider tonight because Katherine left the most delicious meal on my front porch. It was perfect. Thank you.

  4. I made this last night and was SO impressed with myself! Super easy … I added the winter greens pesto we made on Sunday for extra oomph, and improvised (me!) by adding leeks and shitaki mushrooms.
    Thanks so much, Katherine, for helping me to wing it with confidence 😉

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