Baby Veggie Cheese Muffins
Updated: Sep 23, 2019
Today was an interesting day. I was getting a blood test at the hospital when a young woman approached me with many questions about my headscarf and my good complexion. It turns out we have the same (fantastic!) oncologist. She was set to start chemo tomorrow for stage 4 breast cancer and she wondered what I ate throughout chemo, and what I did to keep such good skin, complexion and mood. She said I looked really happy and fashionable and she was on the fence about talking to me because she wasn't sure if I was a cancer patient at all. We later exchanged numbers and i offered to be here for her during her tough journey. She texted me and thanked me for being her role model. Scuse me, What? I couldn't believe it. I have never in my life accomplished a single thing worthy of modelling anything to anyone. I have always struggled with my self esteem in this aspect, forever being a follower and not a leader in many aspects. But through cancer, i have been given a chance to go through something that others have not and would never dream of doing, and i have acquired the skills necessary to cheerfully conquer a monster that every single person on this planet, even the biggest tallest most intelligent man is afraid of. I don't believe that this route has been chosen for me to set me apart - i am not special - the planet is dying and i am merely a byproduct of the harm that mankind has done, but God's grace has allowed me to have all the resources i need to recover, and learn wisely from my illness rather than succumb to it. It's a beautiful silver lining that I have become a teacher of a subject that no one wants to take, but those who take it desperately want/need to pass. I no longer feel weak, incapable and lacking, because after being broken down to my absolute core I now feel strong and powerful and knowledgeable more than anyone else, as I now know something that a lot of people don't - your mind is the only thing that's real to you and the world is not. Tomorrow, the world could crumble, your health, wealth, family, career, relationships could all fail at once, people die and shit happens all the time, the peace and stability in your heart and in your awareness is the only thing that is indestructible. If you find the world unjust and full of suffering, simply change the world by changing your mind. I am so grateful that i know this, and that i (am still learning to) practice this mindfulness on a daily basis. I'm so grateful for the opportunity to be a teacher to someone, even if it's only one single person. I'm so grateful to breathe through the fear rather than panic.
Me as a role model. Can you believe it? Anything is possible!
In other news, I was once constantly on the edge of my seat in regards to Bevy's physical development, but new me could not give 2 Fs. As long as she is happy and thriving and given more opportunities than she needs in all aspects, I have embraced the fact that she will grow at her own pace. Despite being only 8% on the development scale, forcing her to eat and drink simply would not be in sync with my new found enjoyment of mindfulness and peacefulness. So i've been super chill lately. That being said I still have to lay out as many opportunities as possible so that she can take them when she's ready to. Her pediatrician suggested offering more carbohydrates to help her gain weight, so muffins it is!
250g shredded zucchini
30g frozen peas
30g frozen corn
150g cheddar cheese (mild cheddar is better for toddlers due to sodium. Use sharp cheddar for and kids and adults)
1/2 cup milk or formula
1/4 cup plain greek yogurt
1/4 olive oil
250g all purpose flour
3 tsp baking powder
Preheat your oven to 180 degrees celcius / 350 degrees farenheit.
Grate the zucchini and carrots then squeeze all the water out by hand, and dry them off further with paper towel before mixing them in with the peas, carrots, cheese, milk, yogurt, olive oil, and eggs. Mix well.
Mix flour and baking powder together in a separate bowl, then gently fold into the wet ingredients until just combined. Do not over mix if you want a fluffy muffin.
Grease muffin tin with butter or olive oil and fill with muffin batter. Bake for 20 minutes.
Once baked, test if cooked with a toothpick. If you insert the toothpick into the centre and it comes out with wet bits stuck to it, the muffin is undercooked and you should put it back into the oven for a few more minutes.
Once cooked, transfer muffins from the tin to a cooling rack immediately or they will get soggy from the condensation.
This recipe makes 12 muffins. Freeze extras for up to 3 months. Reheat with 5 minutes in a preheated oven.
It would make little difference to this recipe to be totally off on the measurements of the vegetables, and to switch these vegetables with ones that you have readily available. Please don't make this unnecessarily stressful!
If you're making this for a baby under 1, mild cheddar or any reduced sodium cheese will make this muffin super bland, but it is totally necessary as sharp cheddar can have up to 700mg of sodium per 25g of cheese, which would amount to 0.3g of sodium if your baby eats 1 muffin. Keep in mind that other things they eat through the day may have sodium in it too, such as cream cheese, snacks etc. The NHS website says that babies under 1 should not have more than 0.4g of sodium per day, and toddlers 1-3 years old shouldn't have over 0.8g sodium per day. Too much sodium as kids can increase their risk for hypertension and heart disease in adulthood. If you prefer more flavour to the muffin, you could add a dash of garlic and onion powder to the mixture, and use unsalted butter in lieu of olive oil. If you are making these for both your baby and yourself, you could separate the mixture into 2 batches, and use 75g mild cheddar for one and 75g (or more) sharp cheddar with a pinch of salt for the other. These are fluffy, healthy and delicious for adults too!