By Fredrica Syren
Our son Liam is almost seven months old and has started eating solids. I make all his food myself. It might seem overwhelming and time consuming to make your own baby food when you can so easily buy a couple of jars of food and know your baby will get the nutrition he/she needs. Truthfully, it’s not that hard and the benefits are many:
· You can make it organic.
· You know what it is in the food.
· It saves the environment.
· Making your own baby food is satisfying to both you and your baby.
You can choose to make one or two portions, or make a large batch of puree and freeze it. Either way, to store it, I recommend using green containers or recycled glass jars, which I like to use. This way, you can also bring a container with you while out and about.
All you really need to make your own baby food is a baby food mill or (I use) a hand held blender. My babies have always eaten organic avocados as their first food. They are so easy because you do not have to cook anything. Simply mash or puree ¼ of an avocado with a tiny amount of water. The same goes for pears, apples and bananas. For vegetable purees, I add a little virgin olive oil to the puree. No one said baby food has to be bland, so I like adding spices and herbs to my baby food. For example, I add mint to bananas, cinnamon to apples and basil to veggie purees. Use your imaginationJ Per request, here are some of my favorite basic baby puree recipes:
- · I large sweet potato
- · Dash of cinnamon
Preheat the oven to 375F.
Scrub the sweet potato and prick with a fork.
Bake for about 45 mins. until soft.
Split the potato and scrape out the flesh with a spoon. Add cinnamon before mashing or blending. This will give you 2-3 portions of baby food, depending on how big an eater your child is.
Carrot, Apple and Zucchini Puree:
- · 1 medium apple, peeled, cored and diced
- · ½ cup zucchini, peeled and diced
- · 1 medium carrot, peeled and diced
- · ¼ tsp. fresh ginger
Place vegetables and ginger into 2/3 cups of boiling water. Cook on medium heat until vegetables are soft. Mix until pureed.
Parsnip and Green Beans:
- · 1 medium parsnip, peeled and diced
- · 4 green beans, ends and tops removed, cut in half
- · 1 fresh basil leaf, minced
Place in ½ cup boiling water in a pot, and cook on medium heat for a few minutes until soft. Add more water if needed. Add basil and puree until smooth.
Since babies might get constipated when first starting solids, prunes can help.
- · 4 dried organic prunes
- · ¾ cup filtered water
Soak prunes in water overnight. Puree prunes and water until smooth.