Wednesday, December 12, 2012

Finger Food

Miss R loves having something to munch on - or suck on, in her case! I plan on listing a few age-appropriate finger food ideas about once a week to help you with variety and when you get stuck in a rut!

Today I'll go through food suitable from six months.  Make sure any food is cut up small, and any vegetable or hard fruit is cooked first so it's soft. Place several pieces on the high chair tray or on a plastic plate and let your baby have fun!

Frozen peas
heated and cooled.
They're the perfect size and great for babies to try and grasp.

I find it easier to use a slice of bread that has been frozen, as it's easier to cut.
Spread a thin layer of Vegemite, leave it plain, or a bit of butter. Then cut it in to 1cm cubes. I leave the crusts on, Miss R eats them well. If you prefer, cut the crusts off before cutting in to cubes.

You can either grate some cheese, or cut up small cubes. Try different types of cheese - tasty, Colby, mild, Edam.

Peel, core and cut in to small pieces, then simmer in some water til it is soft.
An alternative is to grate an apple. That way you don't have to cook it, as it's small enough for your baby to munch on.

Wednesday, December 5, 2012

Baby's First Tastes: Orange Vegetables

Vegetables and fruit that are orange in colour are a good source of beta-caratene, vitamin C and potassium. Beta-caratene is a type of vitamin A. I find they are a tasty first taste. I started with carrots, kumara and pumpkin. 

Carrot Purée 

500g carrots, peeled and chopped in to small prices

Steam them in a small amount of water until tender. 
Blend in a food processor or blender until the right consistency. Use some of the cooking water to smooth it out or thin it a little bit. 

Spoon the required amount in to a baby bowl and make sure it is the right temperature before feeding your baby. Test on your lip. 
Any left over can be divided in to ice cube trays, place in the freezer. Once it is frozen, transfer them to a labelled ziplock bag with either the date you made it or the use-by-date, which should be about 30 days. 

Miss R enjoys having cinnamon in her meals. I find it a good way to add variation to the same food and is also the start of spicer foods. 
It is recommended to only try one food at a time when introducing solids to rule out any reactions. Try to have about 3 days between each new food. Also, if your baby doesn't seem to like a certain food, don't give up!! It can take up to eight tries for a baby to like some foods. Persevere and patiently try again tomorrow!

Kumara Purée

500g kumara, peeled and chopped in to small pieces
Nutmeg or cinnamon (optional)

Steam them in a small amount of water until tender.
Add nutmeg or cinnamon if you want. Blend until smooth. 

Prepare as mentioned above in regards to storing it. 

Pumpkin Purée

500g pumpkin, peeled, seeds removed, chopped in to small pieces
Nutmeg or cinnamon (optional)

Steam the pumpkin in some water until tender. Don't use too much water.
Add nutmeg or cinnamon if you want and blend until smooth, using some of the left over cooking water.

Store in ice cube trays,then ziplock bags. 

Tuesday, December 4, 2012

Baby's First Tastes

Now that I'm on to my third child, I decided that jarred/tinned baby food isn't the best for my children. It doesn't even taste very good! I did it with my eldest, did half jarred/half homemade with my second, and when my third was born, I knew I had to make the full switch. I now make all my baby food, with the exception of rice/wholegrain cereal. I thought I would share recipes, food combinations that has worked for me and that my youngest, Miss 7 months, really enjoys. Any recipes that are not mine, I will endeavour to link to the original site.

Today I'll share the first taste that worked well for me. 

Miss 7 months had banana as her first food. I know it's probably better to start with savoury tastes, so babies don't become too attached to sweet flavours,but she loves her savoury just as much, so it doesn't concern me. I then moved quickly to pumpkin, kumara carrot and avocado, which I'll talk about in the next post. 

I use a baby food maker - so a steamer and processor. It is totally unnecessary, but I have found it helpful. I don't do big batches of food. If I did it wouldn't be appropriate, as mine only does smaller amounts. Other ways of cooking food is in the oven or steamer/pot.

Banana Mash
1/4 banana, ripe
Breast milk or formula to thin down, if required.

In a bowl, mash banana with a fork, until the right consistency. 

Discard any leftovers.