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As a dad, when you first drive your child home from the hospital, you carefully place your bundle of joy into the car seat securing and triple checking every belt, get into the drivers seat and check every mirror multiple times including the special one you have purchased to see the baby, slowly place the car in gear making sure you are going in the right direction, glance over your shoulder to see that you have the trophy wife, and then you instinctively go about 2 mph the entire way home. There is nothing that is going to endanger this child and you are on a mission to prove it! 

I was on the same mission with food. I quadruple checked all my research going about 2 mph trying to figure out how you feed this kid and not screw things up. I've learned sometimes guys can be good at screwing things up when it comes to raising kids - well at least, I can. And since I was overfed as a child (yes, the whole Chinese and African starving child argument was used in our house), I was not going to blow it. So, although my wife was breast feeding, we did need to introduce food at some point. Yep, that is an ultimate reality guys can forget about. Thus, I read lots of books. Listened to my mother-in-law. Got advice from my grandma and my mom...you name it, I had a discussion with some woman about feeding a baby. I think they all thought I was obsessively nuts. I bought formula, cereal, meat sticks, jars of baby food, biscuits, the list was endless. The child food industry experts want to sell you on the perfect feeding system - and I was more than willing to buy it.

Then one day I decided this was crazy. Why was I spending all this money on little jars of pureed food and potentially stuffing my child full of mushed wheat product? So, we decided to zip up our own food and feed our child the same thing we were eating. I got out the Cuisinart my siblings-in-law had given us as a wedding gift. Every meal, I would zip up the food* we had cooked for ourselves and served it to our bundle of joy. Leftovers went into ice cub trays and were frozen for later meals. For the most part, she loved it. I was even surprised at how many flavors she enjoyed. After all, we had been led to believe that "bland was better" when it comes to feeding babies. Hogwash. We fed our children everything. The stronger tasting foods we introduced in a more subtle and diluted way, but they still ate it. And that first box of baby cereal I bought, was finally thrown out three years later. I think we had only used about a cup of it.

I'm convinced feeding my kids real, whole foods with complex and powerful flavors earlier in life is why they eat such a wide variety now. When we are dining with friends, invariably somebody is astonished when they start eating octopus or unique sauces. I'm not saying every child will eat everything, but I do think we underestimate our children. Feed them more foods. Feed them fresh foods. Feed them quality foods. And for goodness sake, feed them flavorful foods. You might just be surprised to find they love basil, nut, cheese, garlic, olive oil sauce on pasta!
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Ingredients
  • 1 1/4 Cups Dried Pasta
  • 1 Tablespoon Pesto
  • Splash Of Olive Oil
  • A Little Grated Fresh Parmesan
  • Salt & Pepper
  • Large Pot Of Water

Preparation
  1. Boil the past until done and drain.
  2. Toss pasta, pesto, olive oil and Parmesan. Season.
  3. Top with more Parmesan.
  4. Serve.
  5. Refrigerate uncooked pasta in a tightly sealed container. It can be reheated with pasta and olive oil in a skillet later. It keeps quite a few days.

Servings
1 serving.

Nutrition
295 Calories Per Serving Pasta & Sauce. Depends on type of pasta.

Notes
This is my quick pesto for kids on the go. I do make my own pesto from time to time, but I've learned that for quick kids meals it is good to have some ready made handy. I like to use the Amore brand in the tube. I will also use Giada's for Target in a jar if I can't find the Amore. And for goodness sake, please grate fresh Parmesan. You only need a little and it goes a really long way.

*More on how to zip up food for a baby in a later blog.
 


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09/21/2017 5:49am

When I was still a kid, my cravings for any kind of pasta is recipe is very high. Expect me to finish a pasta-recipe food in 10 minutes and I will get another bowl of that. I believe that it is nature for all the kids to love pasta! That is why I can relate so much with this story about your daughter who loves pasta that much! By the way, I appreciate the fact that you posted the ingredients and instruction on how to make your own version of pasta with bold flavors!

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