Thursday, September 26, 2013

Baby Feeding Ideas

I do believe I promised a baby food recipe not too long ago and I had intended to share a baby cookie recipe with you. Unfortunately I don't yet have the recipe quite right so I don't want to share it until I have worked it out. Baby cookies are a little tricky, getting one that doesn't crumble too much, or break off into large pieces so that your baby isn't at risk of choking. So instead of cookie recipes I am going to share a few clever tricks I have for feeding your baby homemade food at every feeding.
Meara has been eating solids for around a month now and I still haven't cracked open a jar of store bought food. In fact the only thing that she eats that is store bought is her Baby MumMum cookies, and her cereal. I haven't really had to put much effort into this either, it has been ridiculously easy. And I am not entirely against jarred baby foods, in fact I think if we all started eating that way we'd be a lot healthier. Baby food is probably one of the few times you will not see unpronounceable words in the ingredient list. The jarred carrots that I do have from Heinz (I have these from the baby shower memory game) only list Carrots and water on the label, nothing scary, so why should I put all that extra effort into making my own baby food? Because I can, because for the price of 2 cans of carrots I could make 12, because I know how fresh it is, because I can control the whole process and that is just a few reasons.
Would you like to know how I make feeding only home made food so easy? I have picked up a few tricks and came up with one that I think is quite ingenious.
So here are my tips for feeding your baby homemade food right from the start with out any hassle.

  1. Feed your baby what you are eating whenever possible. Having peas as a side dish, puree some for baby. You should try to separate your babies foods before seasoning. This is the easiest way to feed your little one and as the teeth come in and your little ones tastes expand you can offer up the full meal, spaghetti and meatballs, roast beef with potatoes, carrots and gravy, burritos, there are so many possibilities.
  2. Spend an afternoon making simple purees and freeze them. Applesauce is easy, just peel, core, slice and put in a pot with some water and cook till you can mash them into a smooth sauce. You can put your sauce through a sieve or the food processor to ensure it is good and smooth but that isn't necessary. Having a stash of purees in the freezer ready to go will make meal time a snap for those days when your dinner isn't so appropriate for baby.
  3. This is my ingenious tip (at least I think it is) for freezing that baby food. Dixie Cups! When I went to freeze my batches of baby food purees I realized that the ice cube trays just weren't going to cut it, I had too much food, and then getting them out after was a real pain in the what now . So I spooned all my purees into Dixie cups (left over from summer Popsicle making with the boys) put them all on a baking sheet and froze them. After a few hours, when they were fully frozen I placed them in large freezer bags that I labeled with the contents and date made. But this idea gets even better, these are very easy to transport, when I went for dinner at my dads, I folded the top down, and popped the frozen puree into a small wet bag (not used for diapers, don't worry) with a bib and spoon. Voila, dinner! All you have to do now is tear off the paper and heat (I don't know how microwave safe the Dixie cups are as they do have a wax coating to make them waterproof).
  4. Make up small batches of quinoa flour and oat flour to add in place of rice cereal if you run out. Oat flower is just ground oats (my blender has a grinding attachment) and quinoa is toasted in a pan and then ground. Very easy to do, you could even add a little dried milk powder to these to up the nutrients (or just mix with a little formula, I use all those free samples, because I really hate breast pumps). 

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