What’s Kamden Eating – PART ONE (#homemadebabyfood)

kamden.sweetpotatoes

That is the face of a five month old enjoying his first bites of sweet potatoes. Despite the dot on his nose and the messy mouth, Kamden thoroughly enjoyed the tasty snack!

Two weeks ago, we embarked on a new adventure: making homemade baby food. I chose to skip the rice cereal or oatmeal entirely for personal reasons. Mainly because my breast milk provides more iron than the iron-fortified cereal and feeding Kamden over-processed carbohydrates seems ridiculous. I am also in the camp of not feeding my child rice cereal in order for him to sleep through the night. That was accomplished naturally and simply when he was two months old – my child really loves his sleep! If you disagree on the rice cereal idea, that’s okay. Your kid, your rules. My kid, my rules. Regardless, in addition to his regular bottles of breast milk, Kamden is being introduced to whole, natural fruits and vegetables, liquefied with my breast milk. Plus, having more fruits and vegetables in the house is encouraging me to eat a well-balance diet as well. It’s also important for me to reiterate that Kamden has not, and will not, consume any dairy (cow’s milk) products until he is allergy-tested at two years of age. Considering my own dairy allergy, and the health issues and complications often suffered by infants due to an intolerance, we nipped this in the bud easily and quickly.

So what is Kamden eating these days? He drinks six ounces of my breast milk every 3-4 hours and we’re currently in the introductory phase of solid food purees. I’m going against the “rule books” again by not waiting the suggested five days between introductions. In other words, you’re supposed to introduce one food, once a day, for five days before a new one. Kamden’s first solid food was pureed apples. Three days later, he tried a mixture of avocado and banana. A week later, he ate sweet potatoes. Later this week, he’ll try kale and spinach. So far, Kamden has eaten everything placed in front of him.

My methods for preparing baby food (purees) are not complicated and the process is quite simple. Besides your fresh ingredients, you’ll need a food processor blender, spatula, tablespoons, and ice cube trays. Fancy equipment need not apply to make baby’s food at home! Surprisingly, an ice cube tray works well for baby food too. Each “cube” is approximately one ounce, the perfect portion for your little one. Once the cubes are frozen, about three hours, I store the purees in individual Ziplock bags labeled on the outside with a Sharpie marker.

babyfood.icetrays

babyfood.bags

Below are four recipes I’ve prepared in the last two weeks that, if you plan accordingly, can be done in a few hours. Some recipes required cooking times while others use raw ingredients and take just a minute or two to prepare. I get inspiration and direction for recipes from Pinterest, but use your imagination. Start slowly, if baby doesn’t like it today, try again tomorrow or next week. Be creative and introduce your little one to a variety of foods. Who knew blueberries and kale were delicious together? Don’t be afraid to season purees with herbs, spices, or fresh citrus juice. Use breast milk or water to liquefy the puree to a desirable consistency and, finally, be patient and expect a mess. Kamden has done extremely well eating purees for the first time, but he is still learning to use his tongue and swallow instead of pushing food out of his mouth. He can get messy, but he’s doing really well and gets excited when he sees the baby spoon and a dish of puree on the table.

Kale, Spinach, and Avocado Puree (the trifecta of green “powerhouse” foods)

  • one bunch of organic kale
  • two handfuls of organic baby spinach
  • one medium avocado
  • juice of half lemon
  • breast milk or water

1. Remove stalk and stems from kale.
2. Add kale to a pot of boiling water (or steamer basket) for 8-10 minutes.
3. After five minutes, add spinach. Continue cooking for 3-5 minutes.
4. Drain in colander and rinse with cold water to stop the cooking process. Let cool about 15-20 minutes.
5. Slice avocado in half, remove pit, and add to food processor or blender. Add the juice of half a lemon, discard any seeds.
6. Over the sink, squeeze the kale-spinach mixture in your hands to remove excess water. Add to food process or blender.
7. Blend until smooth, adding breast milk or water until puree is the desired consistency (about 6 tablespoons).
8. Divide mixture into ice cube tray(s) and freeze.

Apple Puree

  • two apples
  • breast milk or water

1. Peel, core, and slice apple into large chunks.
2. Cover with water in small saucepan, bring to a boil.
3. Cook apples 8-10 minutes, or until fork tender.
4. Drain in colander and allow to cool at least 20 minutes.
5. Place apples in food processor, blend until smooth, adding breast milk or water until puree is the desired consistency (about 4 tablespoons).
6. Divide mixture into ice cube tray(s) and freeze.

Sweet Potato + Cinnamon Puree

  • two medium sweet potatoes
  • pinch of cinnamon
  • breast milk or water

1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees.
2. Wrap sweet potatoes in aluminum foil and place on a foil-lined baking sheet.
3. Bake 2, or until soft. Let cool at least 30 minutes.
4. Remove skin and place in food processor, add cinnamon, and breast milk or water, blending until smooth (about 5 tablespoons).
5. Divide mixture into ice cube tray(s) and freeze.

Avocado + Banana (*uncooked*)

  • one medium avocado
  • one medium ripe banana
  • breast milk or water

1. Slice avocado in half, remove seed, and place in food processor.
2. Peel banana, cut into large chunks, and add to food processor.
3. Blend, adding breast milk or water until puree is desired consistency (about 4 tablespoons).
4. Divide mixture into ice cube tray(s) and freeze.

FUTURE HOMEMADE PUREES …

  • blueberries and kale
  • butternut squash and peaches
  • mango and banana
  • spinach and broccoli
  • banana and plum
  • edamame (soybeans), sweet peas, and green beans
  • avocado hummus (avocado and cannellini beans)

What are some of your favorite or most unusual fruit and veggie combinations?

By |2014-06-03T16:16:25+00:00June 3rd, 2014|Blog|0 Comments

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  1. Jane Sadek June 4, 2014 at 7:32 am - Reply

    Cool. My little sister was allergic to everything they fed her during the first few months of her life and almost died of malnutrition. Not sure why Mom didn’t breast feed. One of those conversations that never came up. I guess because I never had kids.

    • Nicole June 4, 2014 at 7:39 am - Reply

      Oh my! Does she suffer from food allergies as an adult? Some babies grow out of intolerances, others do not. I was diagnosed with my dairy (cow’s milk) allergy at 20. No fun!!!!

      • Jane Sadek June 5, 2014 at 1:20 pm - Reply

        Nicole, she eventually grew out of it and isn’t allergic to anything that I know of now. However, she suffered with learning disabilities in school that I think harken back to the lack of early nutrition. Way back then they called her a “slow learner”, but today I think the diagnosis would be ADD. However, she’s one of those who just check out and be quiet, rather than bouncing off the walls like most ADD kids do. I’ve heard it’s still hard to diagnose that sort of thing exactly.

  2. Melissa D June 4, 2014 at 11:28 am - Reply

    I struggled with low milk supply, so I loved making their baby food from fresh veggies. It seems like so long ago!!

    • Nicole June 4, 2014 at 4:44 pm - Reply

      I’m blessed with an abundant milk supply AND making the homemade purees is so much fun. I can’t wait for new varieties and mixtures.

  3. babyjill7...Marilyn Griffin June 4, 2014 at 1:06 pm - Reply

    I love all of your plans and ideas for Baby Kamden…why not!

  4. Peach Picking | Three 31 June 7, 2014 at 3:02 pm - Reply

    […] great to incorporate fresh fruit and vegetables into my diet, as well as prepare Kamden’s homemade baby food purees. This morning, we visited Little Elm Farm, owned by Don and Diane Collins, to pick one of my […]

  5. […] some and wears the rest, that’s a success in my book. I’m having a BLAST preparing his homemade baby food and so far he’s had applesauce, avocado + banana, kale + spinach + avocado, sweet potatoes, […]

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