I’m fortunate enough to have a job where I get “earned time off”or ETO days, which for me means that I get an extra day off every other week.  Today was my ETO, and I was busy all day.  It wasn’t until after my son went to bed that I finally rested, so it barely felt like a day off.  Except of course that I got to spend the day with my little man.

My day started around 6:30 when my son woke up, at 7am I got out of bed and went downstairs to make breakfast, since I’d slept in an extra half an hour and Cole was happily playing in his bed, I made mini blueberry-pancakes for breakfast.  Yummy, Cole liked them too.

At naptime I made pumpkin butter; I wasn’t totally sure what to expect, but I feel like Cole’s getting bored of his food and pumpkin is a great source of fibre and vitamin A so I figured it was worth a shot.  It was so easy to make and at first I thought it tasted  little too much of honey but once it cooled down it was amazing.  I think I have found a new must-have item for my fridge.  It tastes a bit like pumpkin pie and is delicious on toast, crackers, yogurt.  Mmm.  Seriously, Mmmm.

For lunch, I decided to try Pasta Wee-One for my little guy, but I didn’t have any sun-dried tomatoes, so I added broccoli instead.  It didn’t go over so well, he likes all the ingredients separately, but the truth is that he’s been and continues to be, a little bit sick so I may have been pushing my luck giving him two new things at one meal, since I also gave him the pumpkin butter, which he seemed to like.

After lunch we went to Costco then it was naptime again; this time Imade baby fishsticks and lentil loaf, both of which are favourites of Cole.  No wonder I bought a rotisserie chicken for my dinner, I was pooped from cooking for Cole all day.

So today, I would like to share my gluten-free fishstick recipe; although it may seem a little time consumptive to dip your fish 3 times to coat it, I promise you, its worth it.  It keeps the fish from getting soggy when you bake it.  Feel free to add extra seasoning to the rice flour to mix things up.  I’d like to try smoked paprika and chipotle for myself, plain  salt and pepper, Italian or lemon pepper seasoning whatever your tastes.  You can also add Parmesan cheese to the breadcrumbs, but my Cole doesn’t tolerate dairy all that well, so I leave it out where I can.  Sorry I don’t have a picture of the cooked fishsticks – Cole’s always chomping at the bit when they come out of the toaster oven.

Gluten-Free Baby fishsticks

Baby Fish Sticks

Ingredients:

  • 2 pieces Cod Fillet, boneless
  • 3/4 cup Rice Flour (sweet rice flour will also work)
  • 2 Egg yolks
  • 2 Tbsp (Rice) Milk
  • 3/4 cup Gluten-Free breadcrumbs

Directions:

  1. Cut fish into strips, I make mine about 10cm thick.
  2. Setup 3 bowls, in the first pour the rice flour (you could also add seasoning, salt, pepper, italian etc) , in the second bowl whisk together egg yolk and rice milk, in the third place the breadcrumbs.
  3. Dip fish in rice flour, shake off excess.
  4. Dip coated fish in egg mixture.
  5. Dip fish in breadcrumbs.
  6. Place the fish on a tray sprayed with non-stick spray.
  7. Freeze fish overnight, then store in a ziploc until ready to use.
  8. On eating day, bake fish from frozen in (toaster) oven at 375F for 10-12 minutes, flipping once, fish should flake a little bit when you bend your fishstick.
  9. Allow to cool slightly and serve.
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It’s hard for me to believe that my son is almost 10 months old, I will have to return to work in less than two months, and as my husband says, everything will change AGAIN. My little man is now grasping at independence, including when it comes to eating. He wants to feed himself, though he does allow me to shovel in spoonfuls of food between bites, provided its something that he likes/wants. Unfortunately, as most parents know it is difficult to find finger foods that my guy can pick up and eat, that are safe for him to eat, that he likes and that are nutritious.

He likes to eat pasta with sauce, meatloaf, chunks of chicken, sweet potato fries, cheese, pears, bananas (sometimes), gluten-free cheerios, mum-mum crackers, avocado, gluten-free toast, rice cakes, natural baked white cheddar cheesies and I’m sure at least a few other things that I can’t think of right now.

Of course I continue to make him baby foods (much thicker and chunkier nowadays) and I have been searching the internet for recipes and ideas that might suit our needs. He really likes the fruited jello (last recipe, scroll all the way down) – I think I’m going to make it with blueberry puree next time instead of plain applesauce. I’ve also tried making meatballs with rice cereal to thicken it (he didn’t care for those too much, but I’m going to try cooking them in pasta sauce (which he loves) and have a feeling that might have better success.

Then for some reason last night I had a thought, MORNING GLORY MUFFINS they have some protein (from the Quinoa), vegetables (zucchini and carrots) and not too much sugar. This morning I got to work and was super happy with the results.

I made a few changes, namely:

  • I used the 1/2 cups of white sugar the recipe called for, but no brown sugar
  • I replaced the 3 eggs with, 2 egg yolks, 1/4 cup applesauce and 1/4 cup warm water mixed with 2 Tbsp ground flax (allow this to sit for at least 5 minutes before using, it should get goopy)
  • I used the flour mixture in my post (less quinoa than the whole foods recipe)
  • I used cornstarch instead of potato starch (because I was out of potato starch, though I prefer it to cornstarch – either would do)
  • I omitted the walnuts and orange juice
  • I used chopped craisins instead of raisins (I like craisins better and they are related to blueberries which my little guy loves)
  • I used a pear instead of an apple (combined with the applesauce egg replacement these are plenty sweet enough without the extra sugar)

I baked these mini muffins at 355 F for 17 minutes (yield 3.5 dozen mini muffins), until the muffins were golden and a toothpick inserted came out clean. They are delicious and my little guy seemed to like them – now Mom must refrain herself from eating them all herself!