Wednesday, September 19, 2007

Someone's in the Kitchen, or, How To's

Okay. This started out as a baby food post, but I have to step back. Lest anyone think I actually know what I'm doing in the kitchen, let me report on what just transpired. Phoebe is napping, so I'm making tuna salad. (It's so much more fun than dusting!) Hard boiled eggs are essential, so I commence the hard boiling. Lesson learned today? Leave the eggs in boiling water long enough to make them hard boiled. Soft boiled eggs do not a good tuna salad make. Can we say do over?

I posted last month about my venture into homemade baby food. I do not wear a long denim skirt, nor do I forgo haircuts. I just thought it would be fun to make my own for Phoebe. A couple of friends have asked how it works, so here it goes. (Note: I still love Gerber! We exclusively use Gerber prunes, and it's all I use when I travel.)

Basic Baby Food - Vegetables
We have made sweet potatoes, squash, carrots, peas, green beans, and spinach. This would work for just about any vegetable you can imagine!
  • Peel and chop vegetables into small pieces. It's also necessary to remove any seeds.
  • Place vegetables in a large pan and just cover with water. (You want to use as little water as possible in order to preserve the nutrition of your veggies.)
  • Bring vegetables to a boil, cover with a lid, and allow to cook until fork-tender.
  • Puree vegetables to an absolutely smooth consistency using a food mill (manual food processor) or a food processor/blender. [NOTE: if you use a food processor or blender, you need to push your vegetables through a mesh sieve in order to strain out any tough, unsavory bits. Your baby cannot digest these.]
  • Add cooking water if necessary in order to make food absolutely smooth.
  • Spoon cooled mixture into ice cube trays and freeze. One cube = 1 serving.
Note: all potatoes should absolutely be done in a food mill so that they don't get gummy. Peas are best when pureed in a food processor and then strained.

Basic Baby Food -- Fruit
We have made apples, pears, and peaches. For bananas, you can just mash a raw banana and thin with some milk or formula.
  • Peel, core, and chop fruit. (Peaches and other stone fruit should be scored with an "x" at the bottom of the fruit and boiled whole, then chopped. This is the best way to easily peel them.)
  • Cover with water and a splash of unsweetened apple juice for some natural sweetness.
  • Boil until fork tender.
  • Puree fruit to an absolutely smooth consistency using a food mill (manual food processor) or a food processor/blender. [NOTE: if you use a food processor or blender, you need to push your fruit through a mesh sieve in order to strain out any tough, unsavory bits. Your baby cannot digest these.]
  • Add cooking water if necessary in order to make food absolutely smooth.
  • Spoon cooled mixture into ice cube trays and freeze. One cube = 1 serving.
To serve frozen baby food, just take a cube (or two, depending on your baby's appetite) and microwave until thawed. It's that easy!

When making baby food, do not add salt or sugar. Also, I find that some foods (like green beans and carrots) work best for Phoebe when we add a little rice cereal. She prefers the thicker consistency.

I would highly recommend Annabel Karmel's First Foods if you are interested in making your own baby food!

Baby food is
not that hard to make, although it does take some time. If you devote an hour a day for a week, you can stock your baby with enough food for 2 months. It is also significantly cheaper than buying baby food! Hope this helps!

Phoebe's comments? . f bbbbbbbbbbbbb rrrrrd tttccccccccccccccccccj mcccccccccccccccccccccccccccccccccccccccccccccccccccccccccccccccccccc

2 comments:

Michael Thomas said...

I put you back in your rightful place.

The Lawler Family: said...

Your husband is right...I'm turning into a full fledge Sarah Thomas blog stalker. ha!! I love your blog. You posts are so fun to read. You're so creative. Also...Michael showed me the scrap book page he got your background off of, and both of you are so talented. I'm completely impressed by the background and how it came about, and equally impressed with your scrapbook page. Way to go you two!!!