My husband cooks the most amazing foods and is single handedly responsible for keeping me from living on a diet of fried eggs, nachos, and orange juice. This year, however, he has started a Masters in Education/Administrative Credential program. He is putting in many hours of work in an internship on top of his teaching duties. This leaves him little time for cooking so instead of being treated to wonderful meals most nights of the week, I only get to enjoy his culinary skills a few times a week.
Yes, I know, I’ve been spoiled.
It would be so easy to fall back on my 5 minute meals but the days of fending for myself are over! When our toddler, Ike, was exclusively nursing. I discovered he had food intolerances (eggs, wheat, dairy, nuts) and had to completely change my diet. Thankfully his sensitivities are milder and I only have to refrain from nuts but cooking for him requires creativity. I’m learning how to cook a variety of healthy gluten/egg/dairy/nut free meals; thankfully he likes fruits and vegetables and isn’t the pickiest eater.
Last night I made some rice noodles for us. He likes to eat them plain but I wanted to put something on top of mine. We didn’t have any sauce (husband makes his from scratch) so I decided to wilt some spinach in a little olive oil and garlic to put on my noodles. As I was preparing to throw the spinach in the pan I noticed the 2 lbs of roma tomatoes from our farm share box. I thought they might be good with the spinach so I chopped up two and threw them into the cast iron skillet with the spinach, oil and garlic. I let it simmer while the noodles cooked and about 15 minutes after I started preheating my pans, dinner was done!
I held Ike while I pulled the noodles out of the pan and he pointed to them and said, “NOO! NOO!” The kid LOVES his NOOdles. He is usually super happy with his plain noodles (sometimes I add broccoli and ham) but this time he kept pointing at my plate. I gave him a small bite of my noodles with spinach and tomatoes and he ate it. His reaction was nearly instantaneous; he nodded his head and said, “mmm, mmm” while smacking his lips. I had to stir his noodles in with mine and feed him off of my plate to keep him happy. It was gratifying to feed him something nutritious and easy. Cleaning was a cinch since it was one cast iron skillet, one pot, one cutting board, a knife, plate, bowl and 2 forks.