Saturday, October 20, 2012

Sage Scented Fettuccine and Butternut Squash and Chicken

I found this recipe on and tweaked it to work with the ingredients I had on hand.  WE LOVED THIS!!!  And it felt so....FALL!

  • 3 Tablespoons Olive Oil, divided
  • 1 Pound Butternut Squash, peeled, seeded and dice into 1/4-inch cubes
  • Sea Salt
  • 1 Cup Chicken Stock (mine was homemade using a variation of this recipe: Chicken Stock)
  • 1 Yellow Onion, halved and cut into 1/4-inch slices
  • 1/4 Cup White Wine
  • 1 Tablespoon Maple Syrup
  • 1/2 Tablespoon Raspberry Balsamic Vinegar**
  • 1/2 Tablespoon White Wine Vinegar**
  • 2 Teaspoons Rubbed Sage
  • 6 Ounces Fettuccine 
  • 2 Tablespoons Nutritional Yeast (I could not find this so I omitted it, but it is a great substitute for cheese, I plan on ordering some and trying this again)
  • Freshly Ground Black Pepper
  • Fresh Sage Leaves, optional
  • 6 chicken tenderloins
  • garlic powder
**Alternatively use 1 Tablespoon Balsamic Vinegar instead of Raspberry Balsamic and White Winne Vinegar; the original recipe called for this but I had to improvise because I did no realize I was out!

Steps (fettuccine):
  • Heat 1 tablespoon of the oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat.
  • Add the squash, sprinkle with salt, and cook for 5 minutes. Don’t worry if the squash starts to break apart.
  • Add the chicken stock and cook, still stirring gently until the liquid is almost evaporated, about 7 minutes.
  • Add the onion and season with a little more salt. Cook until the onion begins to soften, 3 minutes.
  • Add the wine, and cook until moisture is almost evaporated and mixture is caramelized.
  • Stir in the maple syrup, vinegars, and sage. Keep warm.
  • Cook the pasta in a pot of boiling salted water until tender, about 10 minutes.
  • Drain the pasta and return it to the hot pot.
  • Add the remaining 1 tablespoon oil, the nutritional yeast, and salt and pepper to taste; toss to combine.
  • Add the vegetable mixture to the pasta and toss again to combine.
  • Serve hot garnished with fresh sage leaves, if using.
Steps (chicken):
  • Cut chicken into bit size pieces.
  • Heat 1 tablespoon of of oil in a medium skillet over medium heat.
  • Place chicken in pan and sprinkle with salt, pepper and garlic powder--this is to taste.
  • Flip chicken and sprinkle again.
  • Remove from heat when cooked through.
Serve:  Serve the chicken and the pasta tossed together or the chicken on the side; we served it separate and just mixed some bites together and others not.  We did remove the larger pieces of onion before serving it to our 11 month old; our 2 year old did not notice the onions mixed in.

Yield: 4 servings

Timing:  Due to the wine and spices I would recommend around a year.  Little Asher was 11 months and is still cutting 6 teeth on top (not all the way in) and he ate it all fine.  He ate the chicken chunk-ed up just fine too!

Storage: 3-5 days in the fridge.  I am going to attempt to freeze the "sauce" to see if it reheats well; I would imagine so.

Difficulty:  3 out of 5; I ONLY give this a 3 because I had to stand over it and stir.  Anything that I have to stand over while I have a 1 and 2 year old running/crawling around automatically gets difficult.  However, no kids---this is a 2 easily.

Epicutie Rating (see left side of page for descriptions)

  • Little Joy:  Somewhat Yummy; she joyfully ate it but like most two year olds she just acted difficult when she saw we were thrilled she loved it (because we loved it too).  She ate a big helping of noodles.
  • Little Asher:  Yummy in the Tummy; Little Asher has been funny with finger foods.  Around 9 months he did not want anything to do with purees and then around 11 months he decided purees were preferred (we chalk it up to cutting 8 teeth the past month). BUT thats how we knew he loved this---he gobbled up a TON even after a full meal of purees.  SCORE!

Saturday, October 6, 2012

Zucchini Muffins

I am always looking for quick and yummy breakfasts for my family.  When I make a batch of muffins, I wrap them individually in plastic wrap then place in a freezer bag and pull them out as we need them.  Currently we have whole wheat blue berry, pumpkin and zucchini muffins all stocked in the freezer.  This might not be THE healthiest muffin recipe, but I have not tried altering it too much yet.  It was too yummy not to share this version of it.  Next time I will try 1/3 oil and 1/3 applesauce as well as decrease the sugar some r replace some of the sugars for honey or maple syrup.  At this point, I will take just about anything that's dairy free though!


  • 2/3 cup canola oil
  • 2 large eggs
  • 2/3 cup granulated sugar
  • 1/2 cup light brown sugar, packed
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1 cup whole wheat flower
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
  • 1 1/2 cups finely shredded unpeeled zucchini
  • 1/2 cup finely shredded carrot


  1. Grease and flour or paper 12-16 muffin cups.
  2. Heat oven to 375°.
  3. In mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, beat the oil with eggs, sugars, and vanilla extract.
  4. In a seperate bowl, combine the flour, soda, baking powder, salt and cinnamon; add to the wet ingredients; mix on LOW until blended.
  5. Fold in the shredded zucchini and carrots (the mixture was REALLY thick)
  6. Fill muffin cups about 3/4 full; sprinkle with cinnamon, if desired.
  7. Bake for 20 minutes.
**Allergy Alert** contains eggs

Yield:  12-16 muffins

Storage:  Serve immediately or at room temperature same day.  After the first day, refrigerate for several days or freeze for up to a month.

Difficulty:  2 out of 5; the most "difficult" part is shredding the carrots and zucchini.  It only took me about 15 minutes to get these mixed and in the oven so its pretty quick.

Timing:  One year due to the eggs, however I gave these to Little Asher at 11 months.  As always, ask your pediatrician before introducing ingredients that are common allergies.

Epicutie Rating:  (see left side of page for rating descriptions)
  • Little Joy:  Yummy in the Tummy--she gobbled up 2 muffins and licked the platter clean!!!
  • Little Asher:  Yummy in the Tummy--boy has a sweet tooth!!  
My husband and I both LOVED them as well!!!

Minestrone Soup

This recipe was adapted from one I found on  I love soups, there is something so homey about this one.  I particularly enjoyed this one because 1) its easy, 2) its a crock pot recipe and 3) it made my house smell awesome.


  • 4 cups reduced-sodium vegetable or chicken broth or combination
  • 1 (28-ounce) can diced tomatoes
  • 1 (15-ounce) can white (cannellini or navy) beans, drained
  • 1 cup uncooked lentils (sorted first)
  • 2 carrots, peeled and chopped
  • 1 celery stalk, chopped
  • 1 cup onion, chopped
  • 1 teaspoon dried thyme
  • 1/2 teaspoon dried sage
  • 3 bay leaves
  • Salt and ground black pepper
  • 2 cups cooked pasta (ditalini or other small pasta)
  • 1-2 medium zucchini, chopped
  • 1-9 oz package chopped frozen spinach, defrosted
  • 4 tablespoons grated Parmesan or Romano cheese (omit for dairy free)
  1. In a slow cooker, combine broth, tomatoes, beans, lentils, carrots, celery, onion, thyme, sage, bay leaves, and 1/2 teaspoon each salt and black pepper. Cover and cook on LOW for 6 to 8 hours.
  2. Thirty minutes before the soup is done cooking, add pasta, zucchini and spinach.
  3. Cover and cook 30 more minutes. Remove bay leaves and season, to taste, with salt and black pepper.
  4. Ladle soup into bowls and sprinkle Parmesan cheese over top (omit for dairy free)
Tip:  I chopped my onion, celery and carrots the night before cooking and placed them in an air tight container in the fridge.  This really expedited the cooking the next morning when my house was filled with the usual morning chaos!

Yield:  The original recipe says 4, but I say more like 6

Storage:  Fridge for close to a week or freezer for 1-2 months.

Timing:  10 months; This is mild and since it is a soup everything is very soft.  When we served it to our 10 month old, we just pulled everything out of the broth.  Assuming each ingredients has been tried individually on your little one, I would say 10 months is plenty old enough to try this.

Difficulty:  2 out of 5; its a dump and go recipe---easy and fast!!

Epicutie Rating:  (see left side of page for descriptions)
  • Little Joy:  Somewhat yummy; we are at the fun age where Little Joy likes to exert her will.  She liked it, but did not want to admit she did.  My husband and I LOVED IT.  And when I eat it as leftovers for lunch, Little Joy is always asking for bites.
  • Little Asher:  I refuse to comment on his ratings lately.  He is cutting eight teeth and only want purees.  So annoying!!!  I am ready to be DONE with teething!

I am a warrior!

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About the Authors

This blog was started by two Babywise pen pals to document our adventures in high chair manners, making our own baby food and doing our bests to raise happy, healthy, thriving little ones!

Epicutie #1

Epicutie #1

Little Joy at 2 years, Sept 2012

Epicutie #2

Epicutie #2
Little Frances

Epicutie #3

Epicutie #3
Little Asher at 11 months, Sept 2012

Epicutie #4

Epicutie #4
Little Elizabeth, July 2013
  • Yummy in the Tummy: Epicutie thoroughly enjoyed each bite
  • Somewhat yummy: Epicutie seemed to somewhat enjoy the food at first, but seemed to like it less with subsequent bites
  • Not so sure I like it...yet: Epicutie somewhat rejected the first bites, but seemed intrigued. The next exposure may be better!
  • Confused: Epicutie rejected the first bites, perhaps due to texture or strong flavor.
  • Sour Puss: Epicutie gave a sour face indicating she did not like the food. However--if at first you do not succeed, try, try again!

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