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I’ll admit it. I’m lazy. When Mouse started eating solids I decided I wasn’t going to be lazy, so I bought all kinds of organic produce, bought an immersion blender, used the steamer part of my rice cooker, and made batches of my own baby food. It wasn’t too bad, but Mouse doesn’t do the puree thing anymore, and my lazy streak emerged.
Mouse still needs some hard foods softened for him. And after cleaning out my rice cooker a dozen times, I thought, “There has to be a better way.” And by better I mean less labor-intensive. My microwave called to me like a neglected teddy bear and I put my rice cooker away. Here’s how I soften hard fruits and veggies, the lazy way.
First, I chop up the fruit or veggie, or I rip open the package of frozen whatevers. I put my selected amount in a measuring cup and fill it with water just to cover.
Then I pat myself on the back for my effort and take a short break.
Once I’m fully rested, I stick the cup into the microwave and cook it for about 2-5 minutes, depending on the fruit or veggie, its pre-cooked state (fresh or frozen), and the chompability level of the eater. Mouse really only needs things very slightly softened, so I zapped these babies for about 2.5 minutes.
While waiting for it to cook, I give myself a manicure and call a friend to talk about soap operas.
When the microwave beeps, I take the cup out and immediately fill it with ice. This cools the vegetables quickly and also gives my icemaker a purpose in life. I hold the whole thing with a potholder and swirl it around to get everything nice and cool. I started the ice method after nearly passing out from trying to blow on the food enough to get it to eating temperature. Because I’m smart like that.
Incidentally, this potholder came courtesy of Democrat Jose Sol0rio during his state assembly campaign. Talk about a useful giveaway! It must have worked, too, because he won.
Once the veggies are cool, I fish them out with my fingers and throw them on the tray, whereupon Mouse drops them to the floor to feed to the dogs, completely unaware that the dogs won’t eat vegetables and that I’m going to have to pick them up when they’re all soggy and cold later.
I use this method for pretty much everything hard that can be softened, particularly apples, carrots, zucchini (which Mouse used to love but now hates–it cries because it can’t go to the party in his tummy), and so on. It’s particularly convenient with mixed frozen veggies.
These carrots are organic and fresh from the farm (really!). But lest you think I’m a Super Mommy with my vegetable choice, here’s Mouse enjoying a slice of leftover Costco pizza.
So there you have it! Lazy veggie prep for the mom who feeds her child organic, fresh-from-the-farm carrots alongside leftover Costco pizza!
Works for me! For more great tips, head over to Rocks In My Dryer for other Works For Me Wednesday posts.