Wednesday, 27 February 2013

Lunch time!

Today I made lunch for myself - Barry out at work, kids munching on carrots, it was just me getting hungry at 12pm. The other day I soaked a bag of dried chickpeas overnight and boiled them up the next day (in the same water). I drained them and forgot about them until this morning. I put some in the freezer to add to soups and stews / curries for a quick protein fix.

The lucky ones got thrown in my blender with some seasoning and bulking / binding ingredients and made into falafel. I served them with a yogurt dip, grated carrots with lemon juice and spinach with balsamic vinegar and olive oil. I'm trying to boost my immune system as I'm coming down with a cold.

Chickpeas (about 2 mugfuls)
3 cloves of garlic
1 baked potato (or any starch - even breadcrumbs or more gram flour, the potato was left over from last night's dinner)
Lemon juice
Salt and pepper, dried parsley
Turmeric and tandoori spices (optional and totally up to you - fresh chilli would be great)
One egg
(Blitz the above and add enough gram flour (or more of any flour / bread / potato) to de-wetten it and make it a mouldable mush (Jesus, Nigella would shoot me...)

Mould into balls and dip in flour, flattening them. Pre-heat a pan for a couple of minutes with your choice of oil. I used coconut oil and a knob of butter but the butter blackened and smoked up the kitchen, so you might want to learn from my mistake. They held their shape well and didn't break up like many of the things I fry. I've recently read that one reason for stuff sticking to a pan and breaking up is people not leaving it to cook fully, so I'm a bit more hands-off now.
The yogurt dip was just greek yogurt with lemon juice, salt, pepper and dried parsley. I wish I'd had fresh mint to make a raita, but it decreases breastmilk supply, so I don't eat it anymore.

I totally counteracted the healthiness of this meal by following it with half a bar of chocolate, but oh well...

Nee x


  1. Hi Niamh, Hope this isn't too nosey a question but dont know of anyone else who practises extanding breastfeeding so feel free to tell me to mind my own bees wax if you feel like it! I'm nursing my eight month old and am now pregnant again..i want to tandem feed and let them self-wean but am basically worried that they may never stop on their i dont want my son (if its a son) to remember breastfeeding when he's a a teenager but also dont want to enforce a cut-off age. Wondering how you dealt with this issue, thank you, Rachel R.

    1. Hi Rachel,
      That's not a nosey question at all. Firstly I'd say well done to you, for continuing to breastfeed past the usual cut-off at about 6 months. I bet your child is healthy and happy, and you're reaping the rewards of that. You don't mention where you are in the world, but I'd say firstly get yourself some real-life support! There are some fantastic groups on Facebook, and La Leche League should have groups all over Ireland / UK / US. There is nothing like breastfeeding your child in a group of similar-thinking people, who don't bat an eye / ask when you're going to wean etc. Just knowing one person out there who does it/ did it can be the difference between success and failure for some people. Contact me privately if you like and I'll see can I find you some relevant support groups.

      I wonder why you don't want your son to remember being held close to you, feeling and smelling your skin, feeling so loved and comforted at your breast? I never set out to breastfeed a child past the age of 2 years, and here I am, still feeding "my baby" but he just happens to be 4.5 years old now. I take it one day at a time. If you continue to parent him with love and respect (like you are already doing) why should he suddenly get upset by the memories of his early childhood? You will surely have a good enough relationship with him at that point, and it will give him such a great role model for parenting himself. He will be likely to support breastfeeding of his own children.

      Children WILL stop on their own, when they need to. Most mothers encourage gentle weaning when they have had enough of breastfeeding for whatever reason. Tandem feeding in my opinion is the best parenting tool for having two young children. Sibling rivalry is rare, they are affectionate and loving towards each other, and are not (too) jealous of each other. Breastfeeding is so important to my eldest son, if I had weaned him already I know he would feel so hurt and left out seeing me breastfeed his brother. And I had a 3 year age gap! You have a much smaller one, and your eldest will get so much important immunological benefits and emotional comfort at the breast, especially once the baby arrives.

      Sorry for the long reply, please get in touch again if you can't find any more resources and I'll do my best to steer you in the right direction! Do read "Adventures in Tandem Feeding" - it's a great anecdotal book and will answer a lot of your questions.

      Best of luck, and congratulations on the impending arrival!
      Nee xx


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