Our didactic physics lecture started at 7am, for which I was an hour late because our human alarm clock, aka Plumster, has decided to be a good sleeper last night that she slept through the night until 7:30am! I guess we’d better start setting our electrical alarm clock now. Noon time residency meeting lasted for what seemed like forever. I was told that I have to produce two research abstracts at our annual meeting this year as I “owe” the program an extra one this year due to maternity leave. Why a new mother is required to produce double the research work than her colleagues because she took unpaid maternity leave of two months is beyond my comprehension. But that’s the subject of another post. After work, I stopped by Whole Foods to pick up groceries and dropped off some overdue books at the library on the way home. Came home, started making baby foods and preparing for dinner for adults.
I’ve discovered the secret to commercial baby foods which Sugarplum seems to enjoy: they always include a fruit item in the jar along with the meats and the veggies to make it taste sweet. For this batch, my secret ingredient is — drum roll please — BANANA! Can you picture the “Chairman” shouting that out yet? Pardon me for my addiction to the Food Network. I bake the organic chicken and banana squash for an hour, then puree the baked goods along with multi-grain cereal, and our today’s secret ingredient: banana. At the end, I added a splash of apple prune juice to the desired texture. If I were you, I’d be grossed out reading this recipe too. But it actually tastes decent. Freeze two ice cube trays worth of baby food and set aside a big portion for Plum’s dinner tonight. Once I get the food processor cleaned up, I threw in some garlic, miso, soy sauce, sesame oil, etc and made a fragrant and tasty paste for the char the adults are having for dinner.
After dinner was prepped, I went to pick up Plumster from daycare. She was sitting on the couch and bolted out of her seat and almost fell off as soon as she saw me. It was really very sweet, how she was so unabashedly excited to see her parents. As soon as I picked her up, she was ready to crawl into my sweater. So I was forced to nurse her right then and there on the rocking chair as I discussed Plum’s day with her caretaker. I must admit, after being probed everywhere during pregnancy and delivery, my shred of modesty was all but out the window.
Once we came home, we played and read a bit. Then came time to introduce Plumster to her newest dinner combo. I gave her a pinkyful. She tasted it and opened her mouth immediately for more. And more, and more. Pretty soon, she was taking in her dinner by the spoonful until she finished the entire bowl! I felt relieved and proud like I’ve just won the Iron Chef competition! Read her books, gave her a bath, milk, then put her down in her crib.
Next, I prepared our supper: miso soup with tofu, put the tasty-pasted fish in the oven, microwaved the ready-to-eat broccoli salad and topped it with raisin and almond and we were ready to eat in fifteen minutes.
After dinner, as MK cleaned up the kitchen, I retrieved to my desk. Yes! Did I mention that I finally have MY VERY OWN DESK?! A place where I could leave my stuff and expect to find them exactly where I left them when I come back?! A place where I could focus and concentrate and relax and introspect? MK picked it up for me earlier this week from IKEA and got it operational last night. I finished the chapter of physics that I started earlier today and tried to understand the measurement of radiation with ionization chamber and the likes; on the half value layer and how the value reflects the quality of the x-ray beam, accompanied by two scoops of mint chocolate chip ice cream. I am very grateful for the desk. These days I feel utterly homeless at work, as I am on my research elective, so there is no desk for me in the resident’s office. There’s no desk for me in the research lab either as I am only there for a month. I come and go in my winter jacket and my bag of essentials, like a snail carrying its home. It’s such a simple necessity, to have a work space one can call her own. And from this desk, I give you… the recipe of our banana concoction:
Baby Food: chicken, squash, banana with apple prune juice
Makes 2 ice cube trays and 1 bowl for immediate serving
- 1 organic chicken breast
- Half banana squash
- 1 Tsp multi-grain baby cereal
- 1 ripe banana
- splash of apple prune juice to desired texture
- Preheat oven to 375° F
- Place the chicken breast and banana squash in the oven for 30-40 minutes or until done. I use separate trays for the fowl and the plant. To the squash tray, I add some water and invert the squash so that the inside of the squash is facing water.
- Puree baked chicken and banana squash in food processor
- Add multi-grain baby cereal and banana to the puree mixture with a splash of apple prune juice to desired texture
- Aliquot the mixture into two ice cube trays, and save the remaining for immediate serving