food for new parents
i feel like this topic was discussed not too long ago but i can't seem to find the thread. i have dear friends who will be coming home in a few days with adopted newborn twins. i would like to bring them some ready-made meals so that they don't have to survive on takeout for what will undoubtedly be a very hectic first few weeks. probably my best bet is things like chili, lasagna, etc. that can be frozen in small batches and defrosted as needed. any other suggestions for fairly easy recipes - main dishes or side dishes - that either can be frozen or will last in the fridge for a while? maybe a chicken dish? i should also add that one of them is a very picky eater - off limit items include eggs, seafood, mushrooms, peppers and tomatoes (tomato sauce is ok).
there have been a few threads on the general topic board too... here's one.
easily freezable things, in 2 serving sizes are best... so they can heat and eat. Also, remember, people are inundated with food when they first get home... so a fresh baked pie or bread (or batch of soup/stew, etc.) a few weeks later are always good.
also quick bread.. like zucchini/banana/carrot bread are good because they freeze well, but also taste homey and comforting.
congrats to your friends! hope you get some good ideas.
Macaroni and cheese is/was total comfort food for me. It can be made ahead, and reheats very well. Homemade cookies also were a real treat. Because new parents don't get out much, some beautiful fresh fruit and vegetables (sliced/cut with dip) would be very nice also.
Things that are easy to prepare, often with one hand, are great especially with twins as she will have her hands full! It wasn't so much the meals that people prepared that I really appreciated (though they were great!) it was the small gifts of snack/light meals that got me thru the day. Things like:
Fruit and cheese basket: It was nice be able to grab a piece of fruit and a few hunks of cheese for an easy one hand snack
Assorted bread/muffin basket with some nice teas or coffee: great early morning breakfast or late night snack
Soups!!: any kind are great but ones easily sipped from mugs are even better. We received 3 different kinds in about 4-6 cup batches. Easy to defrost and reheat.
Mini quiches/individual servings of casseroles: quiches are great since they are good for breakfast too. Small means that you can just defrost and heat what you need
Lastly a few GC's to good take out place in their neighborhood. Some days even defrosting is just too much. Being able to call and get some good Chinese, pizza, etc is often a lifesaver!
Every couple of days bring them something - don't load them up at the beginning and forget about them. Roast a chicken, bring fresh fruit and some decent bread. Don't forget the wine!
Bring the making for a summer salad platter - marinated vegetables, couscous and some delicious cheese. Don't forget the wine!!
A grilled pork tenderloin is a treasure that can be used many ways. Don't forget the wine!!!
Offer to do some errands for them - they're bound to run out of lightbulbs, dog food and laundry soap with all the attention to the new babies. Pick up their laundry, address the birth announcements, clean their bathroom or (my personal favorite gift) offer your house for them for a couple of hours of baby-less time. Don't forget the wine!!!!
New parents can get chili-ed and lasagna-ed out. Already-prepared food, to be eaten in the rare, free, quiet moment is a boon.
Re your suggestion about doing errands, doing the laundry, and cleaning the bathrooms---I have never forgotten something I read years ago in somebody's memoir of when his mother died leaving her husband with four young children. After the funeral as neighbors left the house, most said to the father, "John, let me know if I can do anything to help you." But one woman said, "John, I'll be here at seven o'clock tomorrow morning to do the laundry." And she was.