Pickled Cantaloupe

Abigail canned pickles for our county fair yesterday. She made Spicy Pickled Cantaloupe for the pickled fruit category. If you are interested, go to Miss Abigail's Hope Chest for the recipe. You wouldn't expect canned cantaloupe to taste this good. She pickled some cherries also, just because we had some sweet cherries ready to can.

Black Bean and Corn Salsa

Okay, so I know the picture isn't the greatest, but I forgot to take one before we started dishing up. I was looking for something to help fill up our taco bowls, and decided to give this a try. I just threw this together with what I had around the house, but there are lots of fun recipes online for things similar to this online that included yummy things like avacado, fresh cilantro, green onions, etc...
What you need:
1 can black beans
1 can corn
Diced tomatoes (preferable fresh, but canned will work)
1 can green chili
diced onion
red chili poweder
garlic powder
ground cumin

What you do:
Dump everything together into a bowl, tasting the seasonings as you add them. Serve with tortilla chips, on tacos, in burritos, or in any other way you think sounds tasty.

Dessert Apple Rolls

So, this one was on my personal blog and I thought I had it on here, but apparently I don't...so here it is. It's SOOO yummy.

2 8ct. cans crescent rolls
2 granny smith apples (tastes best with granny smith, but we've used all kinds)
1 1/2 c. sugar
2 sticks butter or margarin
1 tsp. vanilla
1 can lemon lime soda (Sprite, Mt.Dew, 7up, etc)

1. Peel apples, core them and cut into 8 wedges
2. Roll each apple slice into 1 section of crescent roll dough
3. Put in buttered 9 x 13 pan
4. Melt butter in sauce pan
5. Barely stir in sugar and vanilla (so the mixture is still grainy) and pour over the apples (make sure the dough gets a complete coating)
6. Sprinkle with cinnamon
7. Pour the can of soda around the edges, and NOT on top of the apples
8. Bake at 350 degrees for 40 minutes.
9. You can eat them immediately or let them sit for a bit and the sauce will thicken up. Tastes great served with vanilla ice cream. Tastes great hot or cold. It just tastes great. Try it.

Taco Bowls

One of my favorite things to get when we got out for Mexican food is taco salad(I know, not the most authentic thing), but only when it come in a taco bowl. I wanted to make tacos the other day, but decided I was feeling more adventurous than just boring old taco shells. So I started looking around online, and realized that the taco bowls are super easy to make, and are not deep fried, so they're healthy, right?
What you need:
Flour tortillas (you could use whole wheat if you really want to be healthy)
Non-stick spray or veggie oil
An oven safe bowl, about the size you want your taco bowls to be.
Whatever you want to fill your taco bowls with. We used taco meat, lettuce, tomato, salsa, sour cream, cheese, and a corn and black bean salsa (guess what my post for next week will be). Guacamole would be yummy too!

What you do:
Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Spray both sides of your tortilla with the non-stick spray. If this sounds weird or you don't have any spray, you can just brush the tortillas with a light coat of oil. 
Place a tortilla into the bowl, arranging it how you want the finished product to be. Bake for 5(ish) minutes, or until the edges start to get brown and crisp. The bottom may not seem totally hard yet, but it hardens as it cools. 
Stuff your tortilla bowl with whatever yummy stuff you want and dig in!

Baby Finger Foods: Tofu Two Ways

I know this isn't quite the stuff we normally post on here, but I figured it was useful for me and might come in handy for someone else too. I actually have plans to do several more posts like this one as I get more ideas.  
Erik has decided that the only food he wants to eat is stuff he can put in his own mouth. He is done being spoon fed, which means I've had to get really creative. Finding things that he can chew with no teeth, but that will still fill him up and give him the nutrition he needs has been challenging. I started to look around online for ideas, and that's when I discovered tofu. Tofu is packed with protein and nutrients, but is very soft, so it can be easily mashed between a baby's gums. It has almost no flavor of it's own, but will take on the flavors of other things very easily. This makes it the perfect baby food, that you can use for any meal.

For breakfast: Cold Cereal Tofu 
What you need:
Firm tofu, cut into bite size pieces
A handful of baby's favorite cold cereal, we used whole grain Cheerios, crushed in a small re-seal-able bag.
What to do:
Toss the tofu in the bag of crumbs, give it a good shake, and then you're ready to go. You now have cheerio flavored tofu bites. Slightly crunchy on the outside, but smooth and creamy on the inside. Add some diced fruit (in this case strawberries and blueberries) and you've got a perfect way to start the day!  

 Now for tofu dinner: Crunchy Tofu Nuggets
You will need:
firm tofu, cut into bite size pieces
flour (about 2-3 TBS maybe more, depending on how much tofu you've got)
salt, pepper, garlic powder, onion powder, or anything else you want to use to season the flour
Your baby's favorite crackers, I used gold fish, crushed up
milk (maybe 2 TBS?)
What you do:
Mix whatever seasonings you've chosen into your flour. Roll the tofu bites into the flour to coat.
Dip the bites into the milk, just long enough to moisten them, not long enough to soak the flour off.
Roll in the cracker crumbs, and place on a cookie sheet. Bake at 350 degrees for 15-20 minutes, or until nice and crunchy on the outside. Add some veggies and you've got a meal.

You don't think this sounds yummy? Well, let's see what the baby thinks...