Monday, July 31, 2017

New Momma Cooking

I took a little hiatus from blogging because I had a hard time figuring out how to cook the time-consuming, challenging recipes and meals that I was used to once baby John showed up and I no longer had help from my mom and went back to work.

But now that John's a little better on a schedule and I've figured out how to compromise my cooking with some shortcuts, I'm back.  Recipe and posts will be a bit simpler than before, because I don't really have hours of free time anymore.  Those are taken up by baby snuggles!

I've never been great at super meal planning where you cook everything one day of the week, but I have found a few things helpful.  Some of these tips are from a book my friend gave me, Parents Need to Eat, Too
So here are a few tips and shortcuts that I've found useful as a new mom:

  • buying prepared produce is OK.  Save time, but splurge a little for those already washed and cut veggies.  I now buy at least one bag of sugar snap peas or broccoli or the like to make for dinner.
  • casseroles and freezer meals are your friend
  • divide up prep for a recipe into 15 minute blocks.  Example: wash anything that needs washing, dry, and cut up stuff. Then, when your baby hopefully naps again, mix or layer things or continue the recipe as needed.  And right before dinner, cook/bake/etc.
  • stock up your freezer and pantry.  I foolishly signed up for a CSA box around the time John was 3 months old and ended up giving away most of it because I never had the time to use it all before it went bad
  • try a meal delivery mail service.  My sister-in-law gifted one free box to me and it was pretty great.  No thinking about what to make. There are so many services where the first box is free.  I tried Hello Fresh and liked it
  • UberEats!!!!
  • Instacart!!!!
...and it will get better! I still have lots of kinks to work out, and it'll be some time before I'm baking bread or making ice cream again, but every week I'm able to accomplish a little more with my cooking! Last week my kitchen looked like a wreck, but I made zucchini bread!