Food for New Parents
Earlier this month we were having a lot of discussions on Facebook about food I was making and freezing in preparation for baby’s arrival. I also shared how I prepared my pantry for the next month when I won’t have the flexibility to dash to the grocery store like I usually do. Since I am now on the other side of all this I thought I’d share how things are going, what we are eating, and what people are bringing. I hope these help answer a lot of your questions regarding food suggestions for things to bring new parents! If you need more ideas check out my New Parents & Potlucks category in my recipe index. I will also definitely be including a chapter on New Parent Food in the next book. So if you have any requests for recipes or cuisines or food for special diets you’d like to see please let me know and I will do my best to accommodate!
The first person to bring us food was, surprise, surprise, my mother. Not only did she arrive with a cooler full of meals mere hours after we called with the “baby is coming” alert, but she labeled all the meals with reheating instructions. Go, Mom! Not that I couldn’t have figured it out myself, but it was really nice to have the details right in front of me last week when I was struggling with the basics. Like remembering my own name.
Mom knows what we like so she made us lighter foods with lean proteins to keep our energy levels up. She also steered clear of food with firey spices, loads of garlic, raw onions, broccoli, or beans since these can be irritating to a breastfeeding newborn. Once we get a lay of the land with how the baby can handle these foods I’ll slowly add them back into my diet. The good news is that avoiding these ingredients didn’t mean we had to give up on flavor. She made us a great haul of meals including a huge batch of Tortellini Soup to be served with a big green salad, a pot of Ina Garten’s Italian Wedding Soup, a clear-broth soup with vegetables and tiny meatballs, and frozen turkey meatballs to toss with pasta. She also made a fresh pot of beef stew based on my grandmother’s old recipe. I am not a big meat eater but was really grateful for the heavy dose of protein in a rich clear broth after a particularly trying day during a cold snap.
To satisfy my sweet tooth without weighing us down she made two loaves of Banana Bread (one to eat, one to freeze), one batch of Banana Snack Muffins for my daughter’s school snacks, and a coffee cake to serve when visitors stop by.
Early next month my dear friend Nicole has organized a dinner train for us. I can’t wait to see what people bring. I’ve asked them to steer clear of raw fish, heavy cream soups and sauces, heavy meats, and fried foods. At the moment I feel the best when I eat lots of vegetables with a light chicken, fish, or even chicken sausage on the side. For my friends who don’t cook, Nicole included a list of some of our favorite family restaurants and local markets where people can pick up yummy healthy, take-out. Of course, them taking the time to do this is incredibly generous. We are grateful for any kind of help that is given as we get through these first few weeks with baby. I know they know we’d do the same for them!
I’ll post more about good food ideas for new parents at the end of next month when we were back on our feet and have gotten through the dinner train. In the mean time, I plan to get cooking again next week so stay tuned as I turn back the dial to day one of naptime cooking with the new baby!