Wednesday, April 09, 2008

Because that's the kind of earth mother I am.

I am making most of my baby food. Goes along with the breastfeeding, baby wearing, not shaving my legs (well that part is really just because I usually don’t have time). Just call me earth mother. The funny part about that is that anyone who knows me would tell you that I am definitely not earthy. Funny what having babies does to you.

So anyway – back to the baby food. I thought I would tell you a little bit about it. The babies get prunes in a jar, and sometimes pears. I don’t think I could make prunes any better than the organic ones in the jar, and the pears I just haven’t gotten around to buying yet. And I have a small stash of other stuff for when we go out, or emergencies (all organic of course). For applesauce we are just buying a natural organic adult applesauce, it’s better than the baby stuff in my opinion – and a lot less expensive. But all the veggies and the rest of the fruit are home made by me.

I guess I figure that I want the very best for them. Why would I not do this?

Here’s what I do:

Bananas - just mash up a ripe one and feed. easy. Usually, I cut them in 1 inch pieces and freeze. Then I pull out 1 chunk at a time, microwave for 30 secs to thaw, and then mash. That way I'm not wasting a whole banana when they only eat a tiny bit. And they are always at the perfect ripeness.

Avocado - just mash up a ripe one. Thin with a little milk sometimes, because it can be kind of thick.

I have a bag of frozen organic peaches in my freezer that we're going to try this week - I plan to just cook them until very soft, and then puree. I’ll start doing this with other fruits soon too.

For the vegetables – I buy organic veggies. We have had frozen peas and green beans. The sweet potatoes, carrots and butternut squash are whole and fresh (although I’m told that I can buy bags of organic squash already peeled and cubes). I cook the vegetable (cut in cubes first for the big stuff) – either in the microwave or steam on the stove. Then I dump the veggie and some of the cooking water into the food processor, and blend until very smooth. That’s it. Baby food.

My babies are still eating everything pretty smooth – any chunks make them gag. But soon we might try it a little less smooth and see what happens.

I am making a bunch at once and putting in trays in the freezer. Then when they are frozen I pop the cubes out of the trays and put in freezer bags. Each cube is about an ounce, so it’s a perfect little serving. This way taking a cube out of the freezer is as easy as opening a jar.

When I serve, I take a couple cubes out of the freezer, defrost for 30 seconds, and serve. Some of the thicker stuff I might add a little milk to thin it.

I’ve done some taste comparison – and there is no comparison. Squash and peas out of a jar are gross. Have you tasted that stuff? I’m not feeding my babies something that I think tastes disgusting. The carrots are not as bad, but still not yummy. But the home made stuff tastes so much better – it tastes fresh, and sweet. And they love it.

We have also just started giving them tofu. That’s easy instant feeding too, just mash it up and serve. It will be really good once they start self feeding – we will give them little cubes of firm tofu to pick up. So far they are just getting this at lunch time – because soy is something that some people can be allergic to, so we want to give it during the day so we can watch for any reaction in the afternoon.

We're starting to do combinations - it's as simple as mixing together a few of the things above - a few I've tried so far:

  • any of the above mixed in their cereal - applesauce and oatmeal is a favorite lately. Mostly because I think it sounds good. The nanny mixes veggies in their cereal at lunch, I haven’t tried that one yet for dinner.
  • avocado, banana and pears all mashed up together. I think this combo tastes really yummy.
  • prunes and pears
  • sweet potatoes and squash - they love this!
  • peas and carrots

Sounds good, doesn’t it?


Anonymous said...

Carol-I'm so impressed by this! How do you find the time to make baby food and work full time? Do you make it in the evenings after they've gone to bed? Or do you devote a Saturday to it? I have 4 1/2 month old twin boys who will be starting solids in about a month. I don't work outside the home and I can't figure out when I would make their food! You've inspired me though, so I'm going to figure out a way to make at least some of it.

BTW, have been reading your blog for ages now and really love following your story. Thanks for sharing it!


Beth & Steven said...

Thanks for the info. I'm always looking for ideas of how to prepare fresh fruits and veggies to my son. Your blog is great... your children sound adorable and your style of writing is very honest and refreshing (you're a wonderful writer). Thanks for sharing your story!

cat said...

Carol - I do the same for the twins - did it for my 3 year old and have a great no-fuss, non allergic eater as a result. Love the banana idea - never thought about that. I use an electric steamer in stead of boiling - it is healthier and require no looking after - quick and easy baby food - stick blender purees it just fine. On advice of the clinic sister, I thin the avocadopear with cold pressed xtra virgin olive oil - great omegas for baby.

Karen said...

Yum. In two weeks, we're going to start solids in earnest. And I will NOT wimp out this time!