oh sweet today.

17 March 2012
Despite worrying about a fevering baby, today has been a sweet day. My husband took over the school run duties and returned home from work to cook dinner, hang out with our two oldest kids and then get them tucked in for night time. I continued to hold our youngest and keep him calm as he fights off whatever is ailing him.

But, before the day wound down and evening took hold, I popped the baby close to me in my favorite sling and went to work on making him something that might possibly tempt his taste buds. After days of not eating a thing, I declared today an opportunity to see if I could get something of substance into the littlest one.

I turned on the iPod to a constant favorite album-- the Into the Wild soundtrack, featuring brilliant (wait, I must say that again, brilliant...) tracks by Eddie Vedder. And, then, I began making stock from last night's roasted chicken. There's just something therapeutic about the process of making stock-- watching the water come to a rolling boil, smelling the warmth waft through the corners of your home, hearing the pot's lid rattle ever so slightly as steam begins to rise. And, as my youngest tucked deeper into the sling and sleep overtook him, today was a good day for this mama to gain the benefits of a therapeutic stock making session.

I flipped on our rice cooker we acquired in Thailand, watched the stock simmer and pulled out a few extra ingredients to make myself a warm, comforting lunch as well.

And, when all was said and done, the warmed chicken stock went into a syringe feeder and was met with a closed mouth at first, quickly followed by me misfiring the syringe feeder and spraying stock all over the baby and myself. Finally, a few drops went in his mouth and quickly he was opening up his mouth like a baby bird after a long stretch without food. The rice wasn't quite as welcomed. But, from where we had been in days previous, any nutrients getting into the baby were a joyful, stress reducing sign.

And, my lunch? One of my new favorite dishes. An odd combination that reminds me of home, although never in my life was I served this dish. I borrowed my childhood love of poached eggs, my cherished taste memories of hot steamy southeast Asian soups and my newly found enjoyment of pickled ingredients. A bit of the world in a bowl, I'd say.

Poach an egg in a saucepan filled half full of lightly simmering water* until the whites are solid and the yolk is still soft. In a large soup bowl, place a generous scoop of cooked rice, top with the poached egg and fill around with piping hot, rich, homemade stock. Sprinkle with red pepper flakes, black pepper, furikake or dried shrimp chili. Top with finely diced gherkin pickles.

Oh, and did you notice my fantastic chopsticks pictured above?! I crazy LOVE those things. I was at the big weekend market in Bangkok a few years back and was just about to hop a tuk tuk to head home. I walked by a vendor selling all sorts of great looking chopsticks and my eyes landed on these (fantastic, adorable, crazy wonderful) guys--- traditional wooden chopsticks with the teeniest of tiniest fork on one and the sweetest diminutive spoon on the other. Such a day brightener when I eat with those.

*add about a tablespoon of white vinegar to help the egg whites stay connected and form a neat egg


Trudy said...

That was a "very sweet day".

Trista said...

I love this! The soup sounds unusual but yummy and I can just picture you listening to music and cooking with your baby. Thank you for a great read this evening!

Ken Benny said...

A perfect post!

Anonymous said...

Oh, look at those cute little fingers. Hope the baby is doing much better! -Anne

Anonymous said...

Ahhh. Beautiful. - kari

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