Why make your own baby food? By making your own baby food you can have total control over what you feed your baby and you will know that what they are eating is free from salt, sugar, additives and fillers which are sometimes found in store-bought food.
It is very easy to make your own baby food — all you need is a regular or hand blender and fresh ingredients. And as an added bonus, if you make large amounts of his or her favorite meals you can freeze them and you’ll then be able to serve healthy, wholesome food in minutes and for every meal of the week. You can choose to use only the freshest, highest quality produce, and if you wish to make organic baby food, use only organic fruit and vegetables.
And if the thought of making your healthy, wholesome baby food is not enough, then how about the added incentive of saving money and the environment! Homemade baby food will cost much less to make that the equivalent shop bought products – and you will not have an endless supply of empty jars to have to recycle!
The cooking process…
Most foods will need to be baked, cooked or steamed (the exception to this are bananas, avocados and melons) until they are nice and soft. Once cooked, put them in a blender to be pureed, add a little of the cooking water to make them the necessary consistency and hey presto – wholesome, homemade baby food just like that.
Steaming is the best way to preserve nutrients, and it also is the best way to keep the fresh taste of the fruit and vegetables.
Why not buy a multi-layered steamer and cook different vegetables at once? The excess can be pureed and frozen for future meals. Steaming in a saucepan with just a little water is a perfectly good alternative if you don’t have a steamer. Broccoli and/or spinach are good choices in this case. Keep the bottom moist and cook until just tender.
Why not try baking some of the vegetables in the oven? Veggies such as potatoes, sweet potato and winter squashes are great when baked. Cook them until tender, scoop the flesh out of the skin and mash with a fork. What could be simpler?
A food processor can be used to purée large quantities of food – and is also useful for many other aspects of home cooking. But if you don’t have a processor, or don’t want to have to invest in one, why not buy a hand blender? These tend to be cheaper – and it is probably easier to find a space for one in your kitchen!
If you prepare a large batch of food it can be poured into ice cube trays and then frozen – future meals in minutes! The flexible trays are best, and once the food is frozen just store the cubes in well sealed freezer bags – remember to label them though and it’s also helpful to add an expiry date (6 weeks from making the food is about right!)
And one last reason — homemade baby food is much tastier than its store-bought equivalents. Your baby deserves to eat delicious, homemade food just as much as we do!!
Contributed by Sally Philpott.