Friday, June 28, 2013

Bacon Cheddar Lactation Muffins

You read that right. I made BACON CHEDDAR LACTATION MUFFINS.

At Christmas, my friend Melissa at Leche Love sent me a goodie box with the dry ingredients for her bacon maple lactation muffins. They were quite tasty (and that's the ingredient list clipped to a cookbook down there - lucky me!)

As I was eating them, however, I was thinking they needed more bacon. And cheese. Because we've got The Gourmet Toaster Oven Cookbook and it has a fabulous recipe for Bacon Cheddar Muffins. Also, almost everything is better with more bacon and more cheese, amirite?

I felt I needed to meld the two into bacony-cheddary-lactationy-goodness.

What? I'm just shredding bacon...

Ready for the oven...

Voila! YUM!

A few notes, because people keep asking me what makes them "lactation muffins" - and the answer is: Brewers Yeast, Rolled Oats, and Flaxseed meal. Not to mention the calories. Milk-making Mamas need as many calories as they can get. My research has turned up that roughly 500 calories are burned daily when an infant is exclusively breastfeeding. And when you consider that breastmilk *needs* to be fatty for brain and body development and that everything gets routed to the milk first - mamas need to basically inhale everything in sight not to just walk around as sleep and nutrient deprived zombies.

Unfiltered Wheat Beer also helps with milk production. In case you're feeling a bit thirsty after eating the dozen muffins produced by this recipe.

Bacon Cheddar Lactation Muffins
adapted from The Gourmet Toaster Oven Cookbook and Leche Love

Makes 12

1 1/2 cups AP flour
2tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp salt
1 1/2 tbs flaxseed meal
1/4cup quick cooking rolled oats
2tbs brewer's yeast (soak this in ~2tbs warm water for about 5 minutes before mixing it into the batter so the yeast has a chance to bloom)

6 slices of bacon, cooked, drained, and chopped
1 cup grated sharp cheddar (I'll add another 1/2 cup next time I make it. But I feel most things are better with more cheese.)
2 eggs
2-3tbs oil - like veg, coconut, olive, grapeseed, etc (add 2, then a 3rd if you feel the batter needs a bit more moisture.)
1 cup buttermilk

Maple syrup for dipping if so desired.

Mix using the muffin method: mix the dry ingredients - add the bacon and cheese and mix in thoroughly.
Whisk the wet ingredients in a separate bowl and then stir into the dry mix.

Pour into muffin cups/tin (if you don't use paper, make sure you butter/spray the muffin tin cups!)

Cook 10-15 at 350 (my oven is 40 years old and haunted, so take that temp and time with a grain of salt. It's a good starting place, though.)

They're done when a toothpick emerges clean from the middle muffin.

allow to cool a bit


Saturday, June 15, 2013

Giveaway: Reusable Food Pouches From Little Green Pouch - $42 ARV {6/29; US}

This is a joint giveaway with Embrita Blogging and Natural Parents Network. You may enter at one site only. Please find the section marked "Win it!" for the mandatory entry and optional bonus entries.
npn-giveaway-disclosure Little Green Pouch is offering our readers a giveaway of two 4-packs of pouches, a Mini Funnel and Dissolvable Content and Date Labels, a value of $42.

Natural Parents Network Giveaway: Reusable Food Pouches From Little Green Pouch - $42 ARV {6/29; US}

From our reviewer, Emily at Embrita Blogging: Little Green Pouches are reusable baby food pouches ideal for everything from milk to pureed blueberries. They're sturdy, durable, and cute. The collapsible funnel and dissolvable labels make for easy refilling and keep you from losing track of food's freshness.

Natural Parents Network Giveaway: Reusable Food Pouches From Little Green Pouch - $42 ARV {6/29; US}

About Little Green Pouch

Creators Maggie and Melissa are both moms who love the ease of food pouches, but hated the environmental unfriendliness of the single-use pouches - as well as the somewhat limited flavor selections available in them. So they designed their own reusable pouches for everyone to enjoy! These pouches are dishwasher-safe, freezer-safe, and made of BPA-free, phthalate-free plastic, and they hold up to six ounces of food or drink!

Our Experience

These food pouches are extremely cute. Bright, sunny green keeps the otherwise minimal design from being boring, and the back has clear instructions (for those of us suffering from Not Enough Sleep) and a space for writing your child's name or your phone number in permanent ink. They're sturdy and the plastic is thick, so they'll stand upright on their own if you need to set them down. The mouth opens wide enough to spoon in yogurt, in case you forget that you own the funnel, like I did. The funnel fits perfectly and makes the whole process go much more smoothly, and then collapses down so that it doesn't take up too much room in the diaper bag — which makes refilling on the go super easy. I'm fairly certain I'll keep empty pouches and the funnel in the car well after my boys are past purees for easy smoothie portioning and serving. For now, though, Walter still needs a spoon to eat from his, and luckily the spout is a standard size, and a spoon set that I bought at the store (a disposable pouch brand) fits perfectly.

  Natural Parents Network Giveaway: Reusable Food Pouches From Little Green Pouch - $42 ARV {6/29; US}
Dissolvable Labels: doing it right.

 The dissolvable labels are easy to write on and stick well enough that they stay on until it's time to wash them off. But beware: they aren't kidding about the dissolving part — my labels were gone between the time I turned the tap on to trickle and when I grabbed my camera from two feet away and took the lens cap off. Easy cleanup is always a bonus!

Other Features

The zipper on top of the pouches is secure when zipped (great because the boys can't pop it open!) but not easy for me to open the first few uses of each pouch. The bags are also pretty stiff right out of the box — this is great because it means they'll hold up longer, but it also means that at first I had to wrestle with the bottom to get it to open up all the way so I could fill the pouch. It also means that getting down into the creases at the bottom of the pouch requires intent: slack off there and you'll have food left in the bag, so be prepared to either use the nipple section of the bottle brush or pop them into your dishwasher. Ultimately, these are awesome. I give Little Green Pouch two thumbs way up!
Natural Parents Network Giveaway: Reusable Food Pouches From Little Green Pouch - $42 ARV {6/29; US}


You can purchase your own pouches, funnel, and dissolvable labels at The 4-packs of pouches are $14.99 each, rolls of labels are $5.99 each, and collapsible funnels are $5.99 each. They also offer spout extenders, extra lids, labels, and other fun accessories for your pouch set.  


Folks - the rafflecopter script appears to be twitchy, so follow this link for your entering pleasure!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

The winner will receive 2 4packs of pouches, a roll of labels, and a funnel from Little Green Pouch, worth $42. Contest is open to residents of the US. Enter by leaving a comment and using our Rafflecopter system below!
MANDATORY ENTRY: Simply enter your name and address in our Rafflecopter system!
Leave a valid email address so we can contact you if you win. Email addresses in Rafflecopter are not made publicly visible. Please leave the same valid email address in any bonus comments so we can verify entries. This is a joint giveaway with Embrita Blogging and Natural Parents Network. You may enter at one site only, and we'll be recording IP addresses to ensure that there are no duplicate entries. That said, please do visit and enjoy both sites!   BONUS ENTRIES: See the Rafflecopter entry system for bonus entries to increase your chance of winning after completing the mandatory entry. All bonus entries are entered directly into Rafflecopter. Give it a try, and email or leave a comment if you have any questions!

Monday, June 3, 2013

Waffle Breakfast

A few weeks ago, I woke up to waffles in progress in the kitchen. I decided a practice shoot was in order. Here are a few of the highlights. (I need to figure out collage-making in PSE...any tutorials?)

I am so proud of him. His photos get better and better. He'll be second-shooting for me before you know it!

Steam. Skills:

BOOM! Kitty likes to eat breakfast with us most morning.

 A worthy spread. We just nuke frozen berries - the lazy girl's compote.

I'm pretty sure he took a picture of his plate. He dips his waffles into the little bowl of syrup.

Cutting practice. I've gotten some questions - his silverware *is* exactly like ours, just sized for small hands. Find them here.

 Time to eat!


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