Disclosure: I received a free copy of Dr. Sonali Ruder’s new cookbook, the Natural Pregnancy Cookbook, to review. I was not compensated for this post and all opinions are my own.
One of my lovely and inspiring food blogging buddies has just published her newest cookbook: the Natural Pregnancy Cookbook! Dr. Sonali Ruder, of the blog The Foodie Physician, is a board certified Emergency Medicine physician, culinary school graduate, recipe developer and self-described foodie. Holy Moly! The woman does it all. If you don’t follow Sonali’s blog, go there now. Her recipes always look so tempting with pretty, pretty pictures.
Whether or not you are expecting (And nope, we are not. But we are loving our little Lucca!)…
…the Natural Pregnancy Cookbook is an excellent resource if you are looking to eat a flavorful and well-balanced diet. If you are expecting or are planning to become pregnant in the near future, this book is especially useful. Not only will you find nutrient-packed recipes in Part 2 of the book (with fun names … like these Preggo Parmesan and Herb Popovers!), but you will find guidance on nutrition during pregnancy in Part 1 of the book. Even as a Registered Dietitian who is in the kitchen all the time, I found this book helpful and I wish I had read Part 1 before or while pregnant with Lucca. Part 1 of the book includes practical information on: meal planning, morning sickness and cravings, food safety and foods to avoid during pregnancy (i.e. swordfish, cold deli meats, etc) and more.
This cookbook has 125 family-friendly recipes, covering every meal occasion.
As I was scrolling through the book, I earmarked recipes to try. One recipe jumped out at me more than others – these Preggo Parmesan and Herb Popovers. Both Adrian and I love popovers and have been wanting to try out making them at home. One of our favorite weekend activities for the past year or so involves popovers. We pop Lucca in the stroller and go for a walk down along the coastline to Woods Hole. There’s a tiny little coffeeshop, Pie in the Sky, that is always packed year-round, morning, noon and night, that has the BEST popovers. The popovers are so popular, they bake them constantly, so there are hot ones always coming out of the oven. So, we walk the 2.5 miles to the coffeeshop, get our coffee and popover to share then sit by the water in the sun. Then we walk the 2.5 miles back to the car. We did this with my dad and sister too the day after Thanksgiving while my mom was out jogging. Great company, great popovers.
Anyhow, it was fun making our own popovers, as I always thought we needed a popover pan and thought they would be very complicated. But nope. A good old muffin pan will suffice and they are actually very simple to make.
These popovers are perfect served with brunch or with dinner. We used thyme as the herb in them, but Sonali suggests using any fresh herb(s) you have on hand. I did make a few alterations to this recipe based on what we had in the house. First, I used whole milk vs 2%. Second, I used my favorite Cabot Cheddar, Alpine Cheddar, with hints of parm and swiss instead of parmesan. I think both of these changes made for a slightly more dense popover and one that didn’t “pop” as much as expected, but still delish. We’ll make them again, but will follow the directions exactly.
To purchase the Natural Pregnancy Cookbook, find it on Amazon and in Barnes & Noble. I highly recommend it, especially for your mom-to-be friends and family members. And IF we plan to have a brother or sister for little Lucca in the future, I will be studying Part 1 of the book closely!
Here’s how to make the Preggo Parmesan and Herb Popovers (page 238 or the Natural Pregnancy Cookbook):
Preggo Parmesan and Herb Popovers
Makes 12 Popovers
These lovely treats would be right at home at a spring lunch or an elegant dinner party. The perfect popover should be golden brown and crusty on the outside and light and airy on the inside. They get their height from the blast of high heat in a very hot oven so don’t open the door to peek while they’re baking! This dish will provide you with whole grains, protein and folate.
- 3 large eggs, at room temperature
- 1 1/2 cups warm reduced-fat (2%) milk
- 3/4 tsp kosher salt
- 1 cup all-purpose flour
- 1/2 cup white whole wheat flour
- 1/3 cup plus 1 Tbsp grated Parmesan cheese, divided use
- 3 Tbsp chopped fresh herbs (like dill, basil, oregano and thyme) plus extra for garnish
Preheat oven to 450. Whisk the eggs in a large bowl until light yellow and frothy. Add the milk and salt and whisk again until combined. Add both of the flours, all at once. Whisk just until a thin batter forms – do not over-mix. The batter may have small lumps. Gently whisk in 1/3 cup Parmesan cheese and herbs until just combined. Let the batter rest for 20 minutes while the oven heats up.
Heat a standard 12-cup muffin pan in the oven for a few minutes until hot. Remove the pan and spray generously with cooking spray. Pour the batter into the wells – they should be about 3/4 full. Sprinkle 1/4 tsp Parmesan on top of each one and garnish with fresh herbs.
Place the pan in the middle or lower third of the oven. Bake for 20 minutes until the popovers are puffed up and golden brown. Do not open the door whioe they bake. Reduce the temperautre to 350 and bake for another 12 to 15 minutes until done. Remove the popovers from the oven and cut slits in the tops with a sharp knife to prevent them from collapsing. Serve immediately.
*Reprinted with permission.*