Tag Archives: easy seasonal recipes

Anasazi Green Beans

If you have seen my previous posts on Anasazi Beans then you know I am a huge fan of the heirloom bean. Although we typically allow them to dry right on the vine and then use the beans as you might use pintos or black beans, I recently learned that Anasazi green beans are another delicious option!

anasazi green beans

Papa Bird has Anasazis growing as vines along our bottom fence, but discovered a gopher had eaten the roots off of one of the plants. Since the plant was on the verge of toppling over, he picked them for use as Anasazi green beans!

For a recipe for the most delicious veggie burger ever, the legend of Anasazi Beans, and more on victory gardens, see my post on Anasazi Bean Burgers. And for more growing tips on Anasazis and a recipe for a twist on a Southern holiday classic, check out Anasazi Bean Hoppin’ John.

Can you recommend a recipe for Anasazi Green Beans?

We usually cook green beans simply, and Little Bird loved to gum them as one of her first “holding” foods at 8 months. But please tell me, what are your favorite recipes for green beans?

Mango with Coconut Chia Pudding

I love it when friends send me pictures of their takes on recipes from this blog. My sister sent me one this morning of her take on the Chia Strawberry Shortcake  Parfait in the last post: fresh mango with coconut chia pudding.

mango with coconut chia pudding

She made the recipe for my Very Vanilla Chia Pudding with Coconut Milk instead of Almond and added fresh mango. Yum! It makes me think of mango and sticky rice, one of my favorite sweet Thai treats.

Do you ever snap any pictures of recipes from the Baby Bird’s Farm and Cocina Blog? Please share them with me! Use our contact page or connect via Facebook, Pinterest or Twitter.

Chia Strawberry Shortcake Parfait with Very Vanilla Chia Pudding

This Chia Strawberry Shortcake Parfait was the happy result of an accident. We were on a good nightly kick of classic strawberry shortcake until I accidentally dropped and shattered the glass container of whipped cream on the kitchen floor. Messy. Luckily, true tragedy was averted when I improvised this dessert featuring my Very Vanilla Chia Pudding that I’ve been tinkering with for ages and a vanilla bean yogurt. My husband now likes it better.

Chia Strawberry Shortcake Parfait with Very Vanilla Pudding

We LOVE strawberry shortcake. And strawberries are so sweet right now. My daughter communicates with a mix of mostly English, a little baby sign, and some Spanish. But occasionally she makes up her own words. For example, she calls strawberries “Pita” or “Peety” and will absolutely insist on eating them as soon as she sees them in the fridge (or neighbor’s yard.)

Cha-Cha-Cha-Chia! If you are only familiar with Chia as in Chia pets, then you are in for a treat! The same plant that grows a furry covering on chia pets is also the health food of the moment. The seeds are loaded with Omega-3’s, protein, fiber and antioxidants. They have very little calories and can be thrown into smoothies, oatmeal, or just about anything. I think they look like poppy seeds and when eaten dry, I feel like they get stuck in my teeth. Luckily, their coolest feature is that they can turn nearly any liquid into a pudding, plumping up to resemble little tapioca balls, without cooking! Try it out as a healthy pudding or in this chia strawberry shortcake parfait.

Chia Strawberry Shortcake Parfait with Very Vanilla Chia Pudding Recipe

For the Very Vanilla Chia Pudding

Ingredients for Very Vanilla Chia Pudding

Mix all the ingredients well and chill in the refrigerator. IMPORTANT: For best results, stir the pudding again after 45 minutes to prevent all the seeds from falling and clumping at the bottom. Chill for 2-3 hours or until set.

Very Vanilla Chia Pudding

For the Strawberries

Rinse and slice ripe (preferably organic) strawberries and place in a bowl. Toss with 1 teaspoon of sugar or sweetener of your choice. Chill for 30 minutes or until a slight syrup forms.

For the  Chia Strawberry Shortcake Parfait

Arrange in layers in a parfait glass, clear bowl or wine glass:

  • Very Vanilla Chia Pudding
  • Strawberries
  • Crumbled Shortcake (I used shortcake pre-made by Trader Joe’s, but homemade would be delicious.)
  • Vanilla or Honey Greek Yogurt OR a little whip cream


Cooking with Very Small Children: Baby Bird’s Applesauce

No, the title does not refer to cooking up children for dinner. I’ll try some adventurous food, but I’m no cannibal. I’m talking about how wonderful it is to have children, even infants, helping in the kitchen. You’ve heard of farm to table, but how about tree to highchair? In one of my proudest parenting moments, my 11-month-old helped pick apples from a tree and made them into applesauce.

Baby Bird sorts her apples

We like to involve her in cooking, showing her the whole foods and every step of the process. It makes her more excited to eat the food. And we love to show her plants growing, so that she knows tomatoes come from a plant, carrots from the ground, as well as eggs from chickens. It was a wonderful experience to take her to a local orchard last fall for apple picking. Babies at this age love putting things in bowls and bags (and taking them out again.)

Baby Bird loves to help cook

When letting babies and toddlers help in the kitchen there are plenty of chores that do not involve heat or sharp knives. Since moving things from one container to another is a fun game at this stage, have little one (from 9 months on) move the apple pieces from the cutting board or a bowl into a (room temperature) pot. The pieces were too large for swallowing, in case she wanted to chew on or taste one. Mine also liked to move scraps and peel into the compost container. After 12-15 months, toddlers love to stir things, too. At 18 months, Little Bird loves to help scramble her eggs. We put a heavy bowl on the kitchen floor, let her watch us crack the eggs and she “stir, stir, stirs”!

Homemade applesauce

Baby Bird’s First Applesauce Recipe

  • apples, peeled, cored and cut in chunks
  • a few splashes of apple juice or water
  • 1/2 – 1 teaspoon grains of paradise
  • (optional) 1/4 teaspoon salt

Place the apples in a medium sized pot. Add enough juice or water to cover up the apples 1/3 to 1/2 the way up. No sugar is needed, as apples are naturally sweet, but if you prefer the sauce to be sweeter, choose apple juice over water. Add  the grains of paradise and salt to taste. Bring the apples up to a simmer and cook for 15-20 minutes until they are soft and start to fall apart. Mash with a fork or the back of a spoon for a slightly chunky sauce.


Grains of Paradise are a pepper-like spice. They have less bite than black pepper and are absolutely wonderful with apples (as well as on eggs, in guacamole, and almost anywhere you would use pepper.) After trying them, I no longer like cinnamon in my apple pie or applesauce, but feel free to substitute. We keep ours in an extra pepper mill and grind as needed.

Baby Bird enjoyed her first adventure apple picking, apple bagging, sorting, eating and cooking!

Cauliflower Soup

Cauliflower Soup on BabyBirdsFarm

My family and I spent a sunny Sunday morning last week at the farmer’s market. Among other yums, both my husband and I were drawn to an unusual looking cauliflower at the Suzie’s Farm stand.  It was a cheddar-orange colored variety called, well “cheddar.” I thought it was an heirloom, but upon research at home, it is actually a hybrid, but non-gmo seeds are available here. The color turned even darker when I cooked it and cheddar cauliflower naturally has 25 times the beta carotene of regular cauliflower, making it 2nd only to carrots. It made a lovely, simple soup!

Cheddar Cauliflower

Cauliflower Soup Recipe

  • 1 Tablespoon olive oil
  • 1 onion diced
  • salt and pepper
  • 2-3 cloves of garlic, crushed or diced
  • 1 large or 2 small heads of cauliflower, roughly chopped
  • 3-4 cups of chicken or vegetable broth
  • 1 cup of milk (optional)

In a medium-large soup pot, heat oil on medium heat. Sauté the onions, seasoned with salt and pepper, until soft. Add the garlic and cook 1 minute, add the cauliflower and broth. Bring up to a low boil and cook for about 15 minutes, until the cauliflower is soft. Let cool slightly, then puree with an immersion blender, or transfer to a blender. Add the milk, if using, and return to heat until warm.

Very baby friendly. Also great served cool or room temperature! I kept the seasoning simple and garnished with a little truffle salt.

Cauliflower Soup on BabyBirdsFarm