One of the ingredients we brought back from our New Orleans trip was Steen’s Cane Vinegar. We’ve used it in a few dishes and it makes a huge flavor difference from any other vinegar. This is the salad dressing that converted me from dry rabbit food to a salad with dressing.
1/4 cup plus 1 tablespoon Steen’s cane vinegar
1/3 cup honey
3 tablespoons minced shallot
1 tablespoon minced garlic
2 teaspoons Dijon mustard
1/4 teaspoon plus a pinch of salt
1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
1 cup canola oil (we used olive oil)
In a medium nonreactive mixing bowl, combine the vinegar, honey, shallot, garlic, mustard, salt, and pepper and whisk to combine. Allow to sit 5 to 10 minutes, then little by little whisk in the canola oil until completely incorporated. Taste and adjust the seasoning if necessary.
This dressing is just the right amount sweet and tangy. It’s lovely on a chicken breast and a bacon salad. There’s almost always a jar of this in our refrigerator.
This was a surprise win for our family. Even before Miss A’s arrival, we made it a point to eat more fish. Salmon is hard one because done well, it’s amazing. Done poorly, it’s terrible.
On a whim, I tried this Honey-Soy Salmon dish from Parents magazine. It was so easy and even better, Miss A kept asking for more! She wasn’t really a fan of the zucchini, but she also hadn’t had it with the skin still on before.
Toddler Approved: Honey Soy Salmon
- 4-6 salmon fillets (we get the frozen ones that still have the skin on the number of fillets depends on the number of people eating)
- 1/2 cup honey
- 1/3 cup reduced-sodium soy sauce we used regular
- Nonstick cooking spray or just some of your favorite oil
- 1 tablespoon vegetable oil or olive
- 2 medium zucchini sliced into 1/4-inch thick half-moons
- 1 onion diced
- 1/4 teaspoon salt
Add honey and soy into a zip top bag, squish to mix.
Add the fish and seal the zip top.
Turn to coat. Marinate for 30 minutes or up to 2 hours (we marinated for about an hour).
Drain and discard marinade.
Preheat broiler. If you have the option of low or high, choose high.
Line a rimmed baking sheet with foil and coat foil with cooking spray or lightly drizzle oil.
Place fish on foil. Broil 5 to 7 minutes per 1/2-inch thickness of fish, or until fish flakes easily with a fork.
We broiled for about 7 minutes total.
While the fish is broiling, heat the oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Add zucchini and onions. Cook about 3 minutes or until just tender; season with salt.
Serve the fish fillets with the zucchini.
Note: if using frozen fillets, be sure to allow to defrost before you marinate. It makes a difference.
The addition of lightly caramelized onions made the salmon even tastier. We will absolutely be making this dish again. Plus it was so easy, we could make it even on the busiest weeknight!
Miss A is continuing to learn to use toddler forks and spoons and loves practicing. She also loves Italian inspired dishes and eating dinner with us. That means J and I are regularly trying to come up with dinner recipes that work for all three of us. We had success once with this pork dish (probably because it contained A’s beloved apples), but not with much else since. On a whim, I whipped together this baked chicken and orzo dish. She couldn’t get enough and kept asking for more!
Toddler approved: Chicken "parm"
- 2-3 tablespoons olive oil
- 1 jar Your favorite marinara sauce we usually use Bertolli Marinara and Burgundy wine or Lucky's Market Roasted Garlic
- 3 slices Mozzarella
- 1/2 box Orzo pasta
Yes, yes you can bake from frozen! I was thrilled to discover this after reading the back of the bag of frozen chicken. First, preheat the over to 350 degrees.
Then put the olive oil in the bottom of the pan. We've used everything from a pie plate to a baking dish. What you use doesn't matter as much as making sure the bottom is mostly coated in olive oil.
Put the chicken breasts on top of the oil and add pasta sauce.
Bake for at least 45 to 50 minutes. Check for done-ness by cutting the largest chicken breast to see if it is still pink. If it is, put it back in the over for 10-15 minute minutes and check again. Since we baked from frozen, it usually takes about an hour of total baking.
Because the chicken is topped with sauce and resting on olive oil, we haven't had any issues with drying it out even the one time I accidentally cooked it for almost an hour and a half.
When there's about 15 minutes left in baking, cook the orzo per the package directions.
We also like sauce, so we heat up about a cup and a half of the remaining pasta sauce in a sauce pot on the stovetop.
When the chicken is cooked through, remove from oven and place mozzarella slices on top. It should melt.
Serve over top the orzo and sauce with your favorite vegetable. Miss A is partial to peas.
Truthfully, it’s a bit bland for our palates, but a little salt and pepper after go a long way. As A gets better at chewing and using utensils, we will season and then brown the chicken before baking. This dish is super easy and very simple to get going before we pick Miss A up in the evening from school.