In a world of mumsnet arguments and bitchy trolls, it would be easy to imagine that mums are all set to be pitted against each other. That somehow we are a set of tribes governed by the choices that we make on raising our babies. The media would have you believe that these choices are so contrasting and the differences so stark that said tribes can barely make eye contact, let alone be friends.
But here is the thing. I have found the opposite to be true. I raise the mini foodie in the way that works for us and her. On nights when she has refused to find sleep I have snuggled her into our bed and we have slept soundly. When she cried as a baby, I fed her, plenty and often. When she called out at nighttime in the early months I kissed and rocked her to sleep. During the day she shares her floor space with a large, and currently molting, dog. One with a jaw of steel and a heart of gold. She has definitely been kissed by him and she may or may not have been found crawling with his teddy in her mouth yesterday. I cook every meal from scratch but there are also snacks handed out in the pram if it means I can drink my coffee in the sunshine with a friend for five more precious minutes.
Every choice I make has an polar option but I have rarely felt judged for them. This week the feeling that ‘we are all just doing our best in this crazy madness together’ really rang true. I posted a mum question to a page of strangers, strangers that could easily have judged me. All the answers came back full of support and positivity. Where there was no answer I instead got many a ‘it will pass, and you are a great mum’ comment. I went to bed that night calmer, confidence restored.
This meal is dedicated to those mum strangers. This meal was a hit in our house (and a few other houses that got benefited from the test kitchen). It is a simple, cosy meal. It is a meal, that like parenthood, you can customise to suit your family. No time for salmon, switch in a sturdy white fish. Panko too boring, add in herbs and spices. The husband had his with ketchup, I doused mine in nandos hot sauce (im addicted) and the mini foodie was allowed to messily dip/smash hers into warmed pea puree. You could also sandwich a few between two slices, with a slick of a good relish and some sliced veggies for a pretty hearty meal. As is the theme of the week….whatever works for you!
Ingredients (makes 6 -8 fingers)
1 salmon (or white fish) steak
1 cup panko breadcrumbs
1 egg (beaten)
4 tbsp plain flour
1 tsp plain oil
Preheat your oven to 180C
Lightly oil a baking tray
Lay out three shallow bowls – place the flour into one, the beaten egg into the second and the breadcrumbs into a third
Slice the fish steak into 1 inch strips -Triple check that there are no bones at all left in the fish
Dip each fish piece into the flour first, then the egg and finally the breadcrumbs and then place onto the baking tray
Once all the pieces are crumbed, bake in the oven for 10-12 minutes, or until the fish is well cooked