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Food for the soul (or rather for that cheeky fella)

The greatest thing about being a mummy is that you can explore that hidden cooking talent of yours. I am no where near the Domestic Goddess Nigella Lawson but still I insisted on cooking every single meal for JJ and plan my own recipes. Since JJ started on solids when he was 6 months old, he seemed to have enjoyed my cooking and finished off the whole bowl 95% of the time. I have never cooked a meal in my life (if you consider fried eggs is a meal, then I have fried some for A a couple of times), but when JJ came along I felt inspired to cook everything from scratch. So on Saturday evening, I decided to make some pasta for JJ for dinner. Here is what you need:

1 carrot grated

2 stalk of celery grated ( why 2 stalks, because 1 stalk got little flimsy as you grate hence you will waste it and unable to grate – well that’s what happened to me!)

3 red tomatoes diced finely

1/4 cup of onions diced finely (optional)

1/2 cup of minced meat (could be pork or beef)

1 1/2 cup of Corn and ikan bilis (anchovies) broth

Organic tomato paste (opt for those low in sodium)

1 packet of Heinz baby pasta stars

1 teaspoon of olive oil

2 teaspoon of grated parmesan cheese

Ingredients for the pasta

Ingredients for the pasta

First you make the broth for the pasta sauce. I like to make corn and ikan bilis broth because corn makes the soup sweet and ikan bilis are rich in protein and calcium. I made the broth simply by chopping 1 piece of corn into small pieces and place it in a pot with 1/2 cup of ikan bilis (placed in a tea bag) and 1 1/2 cups of water. Then simply boil the pot for 20 to 30 minutes to get a tasty corn and ikan bilis broth.

Next, heat up a pan with a little olive oil. Then add in the carrots, celery, tomatoes and onions to fry. Stir fry till its almost soft then add the minced meat and some broth. Be careful, do not over brown the onions as instead of making the sauce sweet it will taste char instead. Once the meat is almost cooked, then add in 2 tablespoon of organic tomato paste and more broth. Then simmer the sauce till it thickens and the meat is fully cooked.

Next in a clean pot, boil the Heinz baby pasta stars in water for about 5 minutes or till they are really soft.

Lastly, plating! Drain the pasta stars, put them in the bowl, add the pasta sauce and some parmesan cheese.

Baby star pasta

Baby star pasta

After 30 minutes of cooking and sweating it out, now the final taste test by the cheeky fella. When JJ tried the first mouth of pasta, he used his hands to take it out from his mouth. Maybe because this is the first time he is eating baby pasta. He tried for another 5 mouthful of pasta before completely refuse to eat his dinner. Thank god I have some left over broth so I mix the pasta in the broth and JJ had a pasta tomato soup instead for dinner. He managed to finish half a bowl of pasta (with some cajoling of course) before figuring out that playing with his water bottle and making himself wet is more worthwhile than having dinner. Well to me it is a good start as JJ is getting used to new taste. We will definitely try this pasta again.

JJ playing with water bottle instead of having dinner

JJ playing with water bottle instead of having dinner