The Baby isn’t a great eater -- yet. We started feeding him solid foods when he was a little over four months old. I had out washcloths and bibs (and the camera), but all the food ended up in his mouth. Who were these children in pictures and video clips that had sloppy smiles and food from ear to ear? My little guy didn’t even need a bib! It finally occurred to me that if he won’t eat more than five friggin’ bites of something we’d never experience the fun get-the-camera-honey moments that I so craved.
Since he tended to button his lip after anywhere from two to 10 bites, I didn’t want to waste food by buying little jars that instruct you to discard leftovers after a day. Until recently, one of those jars would have lasted a week in our house! So, I decided that I would make The Baby’s food myself. All I needed was a mini-food processor (or blender), a couple of ice cube trays and freezer bags. It’s much easier to toss out leftover green beans when you know you still have eight servings left and that one serving probably cost you less than 10 cents (I didn’t actually do the math).
In the last week or so The Baby has been eating more in general (except when his gums are sore :(). Yesterday, he ate two sweet potato cubes and about two ounces of peach yogurt for dinner. Alas, he really is quite a gentleman in the highchair. The messiest he’s ever been was on Tuesday when he actually gagged on and puked up the sweet peas that I had so lovingly pureed for him. I’m still keeping a bib and a camera handy – just in case.
Here’s what he’s tried so far:
Acorn Squash: Loves it!
Cut squash in half, clean seeds, turn cut-side down on a baking sheet and bake (or roast as a better cook might say) for 45 minutes at 350 degrees. You can also do it in the microwave for 10 minutes. Just lay squash upside down on a micowave-safe plate. Let it cool down and gently rip the skin off. Puree in blender or food processor, adding milk/formula/water to thin out to desired consistency. Pour into ice cube trays and freeze. Pop out into freezer bags. Note: I've also combined acorn and butternut squashes for a The Baby-approved squash medley.
"Baked" Apples: Loves it!
Peel and core apples. Place pieces in a microwave-safe dish, sprinkle with cinnamon, add a 1/2-inch of water and nuke for 5 minutes. Puree apples in the water. Note: for older infants, you could just mash the apples.
"Baked" Pears: Loves it!
Follow above directions, omit cinnamon.
Green Beans: Bleh!
I used a bag of frozen beans. Be sure to read the ingredients. Beans should be the only thing listed. Cook according to package instructions. Puree in blender using the water they cooked in to thin out to desired consistency. Pour into ice cube trays and freeze. Pop out into freezer bags.
Sweet Potatoes: Loves it!
I bake two potatoes in the microwave. Let them cool down and scoop them out of the skins. Puree in blender or food processor, adding milk/formula/water to thin out to desired consistency. Pour into ice cube trays and freeze. Pop out into freezer bags.
Peas: Hates it!
Same directions as green beans.
Butternut Squash: Loves it!
Same directions as the Acorn Squash. But I’m going to give you a recipe that will make your husbands, friends, mothers or whoever else tastes this, think that you are a domestic goddess (well, really, you are!).
This is from Allrecipes.com and is especially quick if you are making squash for your baby anyway.
Adults-Only Roasted Butternut Squash Soup
1 large butternut squash (buy a small one to make for the baby while you are at it!)
6 Tablespoons of chopped onion
4 Tablespoons of butter (I use light)
4 oz of cream cheese (I use light)
3 cups of water
4 chicken bullion cubes
1 teaspoon of marjoram (optional… if you’ve never heard of it, you’ll never miss it, trust me!)
Cut squash in half lengthwise, clean seeds, turn cut-side down on a baking sheet and bake for 45 minutes at 350 degrees. Let it cool down and gently rip the skin off. At this point I usually puree squash for The Baby and do the whole ice cube thing and put the large squash in a container until I’m ready to make the soup. To make the soup: Puree the squash and cream cheese together and set aside. Sautee onions in the butter and sprinkle with marjoram. Add water and bullion cubes and bring to a boil. Add in the squash/cheese mixture and heat but do not boil.