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Gastro Friday: Out with the Baby Food Myths, in with the Global Baby Food!

By on Mar 2, 2012 in The Gastronomical Leena | 5 comments

After all my research into what I should and shouldn’t feed my baby daughter, the information I found was limiting, bland, and in some cases, problem-causing (remember some foods are movers, and others are slowers!). I had to wonder, What do infants around the world eat? Surely, the rest of world isn’t feeding their baby rice cereal and pureed sweet potatoes and unknowingly turning them into tiny constipation bombs, are they?! A nurse that runs a local moms support group told me once that the whole purpose in starting your baby on solid foods is to get them to eat the same food you do as soon as possible. So if I eat lamb curry, chicken enchiladas and lentil stew, shouldn’t my baby? Traditional parenting advice tells us no, bland is best, but as Dr. David Bergman, a Stanford University pediatrics professor, stated in this article, beware that there are a lot more baby feeding myths out...

Leena Cooks: Baby Food

By on Nov 16, 2011 in Leena Cooks | 0 comments

Guess who is eating solid foods now?! Miss Ella! We all knew this was inevitable. A food lover has a baby, the baby finally moves on to solid foods, and food lover goes crazy making gourmet food baby couldn’t possibly appreciate. I am SO there right now. One bite of oatmeal in, flashes of Baby Boom with Dianne Keaton ran through my head, and before I could move my gourmet baby food empire to the big city, I jumped back to reality. I had to. Because she got a hold of the bowl of oatmeal and flung it on the cat. Hey, I think I like this stuff! Feeding her has turned out to cause a mixture of feelings in me–pride and joy mixed with a good dose of humor and frustration. It is so freaking adorable when she opens her mouth wide for a spoonful of food. WHEN is the key word here. When she doesn’t open her mouth for food, she is busy jamming her hands/bib/shirt into her mouth....

Leena Cooks: Homemade Vanilla Extract

By on Nov 29, 2010 in Leena Cooks | 0 comments

Vanilla extract is essential to all baking recipes and many desserts, especially around the holiday season. But to get your hands on a quality batch will cost at least $10 ( I like Nielson-Massey). I finally decided to get off my lazy butt and make my own, which you literally can just keep adding to, having vanilla extract FOREVER. Pretty cool, huh? Photos and the recipe after the jump. Recipe: Leena’s homemade Vanilla Extract Ingredients 1 cup of hard liquor, whisky or vodka 3 vanilla beans, split almost completely in half 1 glass jar with tight lid Instructions Combine the two ingredients in the jar, and place lid on tightly. Store in a dark place for at least two months, or as long as forever. As the liquid drops down, you can add more vanilla and more liquor to keep it going. Microformatting by hRecipe....