Monday, March 30, 2009

Earth's Best Teething Biscuits

I decided to try out some Earth's Best Teething Biscuits the other day. They are recommended for babies 9 months and up. Drew is 8 1/2 months, but has been eating food since he was four months and was doing all the things recommended on the box (crawling, eating thicker foods, using fingers to pick up foods, etc.). These are hard, very very hard. Drew only has two front teeth. These became more of sucking biscuits than teething biscuits. And you all know what happens when you suck on a hard cookie for a long period of time don't you? A huge, sticky mess. We are talking all over my shirt and pants, Drew's clothes, face, hair, etc. We both had a bath after this snack. Drew liked it, but not worth the mess in my opinion.

Ditalini Rigati Pasta

Ditalini Rigati is the perfect size and texture for finger foods. I made 1/3 a cup of uncooked pasta and it was more than enough for three days worth of servings. Below are some storage tips from a website called Mrs. Weiss:
Can I cook pasta ahead of time or reheat leftover pasta?

You can, however best quality comes from cooking pasta right before it's served. To cook ahead, prepare as directed on package, tossing with vegetable oil. Store, tightly sealed in plastic bags 3 to 4 days. When ready to serve, boil water; remove pasta from plastic bag. Immerse pasta in boiling water 1 minute or until heated through. Drain in colander and serve.

Can I freeze pasta?

Combination dishes with red sauce (like lasagna) freeze best. Cooked pasta without sauce does not freeze particularly well.

I cooked the pasta according to the directions, about 9-10 minutes in boiling water (no added salt), stirring occasionally. I added a dash of olive oil to the pasta to keep it from sticking while being stored in the refrigerator. Drew likes the pasta plain. I plain on trying out some new recipes later using the pasta.

Thursday, March 26, 2009

Finger foods already!!?

Well, kind of anyways. It's hard to say "finger" foods when the baby can't figure out how to get the food from her clenched fists into her mouth. There is a lot of frustration there when trying to shove the whole fist into the mouth in hopes of getting some food!

I tried zucchini and mango as finger food, or small squishy bites anyways, and it went pretty well. She is not totally over purees, but loved her puffs so much I thought I would see what happened with these.

I steamed the zucchini way too much though, and it was too squishy. She still liked it though. The mango was just frozen, organic pieces and I microwaved them to thaw and cut them up smaller. She liked this ok, but I think it may have been sweeter than she likes. I tasted it and to me it tastes like straight sugar!

Wednesday, March 25, 2009

Just when I think it can't be any easier...

I find this in the freezer section of my local grocery store...
It is organic, frozen winter quash with no added ingredients and already pureed. Just thought I'd share my latest fine.

Sunday, March 22, 2009

Mangos as Finger Food

It doesn't get much easier than this. I thawed out frozen mango I bought from Target (no sugar added). I used the microwave, it just takes a few seconds. Make sure you check the temperature before feeding. I cut the cubes up into pretty small little pieces. Drew really liked these.

Potato & Butternut Squash Stew

This week's new foods for Drew consisted of white potatoes and butternut squash. Potato & Butternut Squash Stew is yet another recipe from the Cooking for Baby cook book. If you couldn't already figure it out, I am a big fan of the cook book. The recipe is as follows...

Cut squash (1/2 small, peeled and seeded butternut squash), potato (6 small yellow, peeled), and apple (1 medium Fuji, peeled, cored and seeded) into 1 inch chunks. You should have about one cup of each. Heat 1 tbsp of olive oil in a saucepan over medium-high heat. Add potato, squash and apple and cook, stirring occasionally (about 8-10 minutes). Apples will begin to turn golden. Add 1 1/2 cups of water and bring to a boil. Reduce heat, cover and simmer until vegetables are soft, 30-35 minutes. Mash or blend to desired consistency.

I made a few minor changes based on what I had in the kitchen and Drew's taste. I only had frozen butternut squash and just used a half of a bag and one large white potato. Drew hates apples, but I wanted to try this to find other ways to sneak them into his diet. I only used one quarter of an apple. I also made this very thick and chunky because I am trying to get Drew used to more finger foods now.

Before I gave this to Drew I tried out just the butternut squash. I simply microwaved a half a bag of frozen butternut squash and blended it, no need for extra liquid. Butternut squash is possibly Drew's new favorite food. As for the stew, the first time Drew ate this he wasn't thrilled about it, but he gobbled it up the second go around. I've also Drew plain potatoes diced in small cubes as finger food and he loves it as well.

Barnes, Lisa. Cooking for Baby. Gold Street Press, page 46.

Thursday, March 19, 2009

Tuesday, March 17, 2009

Green Beans for Olivia!

Well, as usual, she loved them. There is nothing she doesn't like, she just doesn't want to eat a lot. Maybe she will be petite....

All I did was get a bag of frozen organic greens beans, and steam them in the Beaba. Then I pureed them with water, and they got pretty smooth. Not Gerber smooth, but pretty smooth. I froze the rest and they are good for 3 months. 

Sunday, March 15, 2009

Turkey with Pear Puree

So I decided to start Drew on some meat this past week and turkey is said to be easy digest. Not to mention we had turkey spaghetti and just decided to save half the cook turkey for Drew to make it easy on us. I went ahead and followed the directions for cooking the turkey that are in my cooking for baby book. It states:

Combine 1/2 pound of ground turkey and 1 cup of water and cook over medium heat in a non-stick frying pan. Stir it constantly and break up the turkey as it is cooking. Heat until the meat is cooked through and no longer pink (about 3-5 minutes). Let it cool and drain the meat, saving the liquid. Transfer the turkey to your food processor and puree for a minute. With the machine running, add the reserved cooking fluid a little at a time until the texture is paste like. This can be stored for 1-2 days in the fridge or be frozen for up to 1 month.

The turkey looks and smells strange by itself. The book suggest that blending meat purees with fruit will make the easier on the taste buds. Personally, I'd have to disagree but I thought for Drew it would be better than the turkey by itself. The book states that pears go well with turkey.

The results: I was very worried that Drew would not eat this. My babysitter actually fed this to him for 3 days and said at first he had a funny look on his face, but she thinks it was more from the texture than the flavor. She said after the first few bites, he loved it. I took Drew this weekend to a restaurant and wanted to see for myself, so I pulled out the turkey and pears, mixed the two together, and he was not having it. It could be because we were in a restaurant and he was distracted and/or tired, or maybe he was tired of having turkey for so many days in a row. The good thing is he has eaten it in the past with no issues and no allergic reactions.

Note: Drew was 7 months and 3 weeks old for his first meat

Barnes, Lisa. Cooking for Baby. Gold Street Press, page 35.

Sunday, March 8, 2009

More refined taste

On the gourmet menu this week: Green beans with mint & olive oil, white asparagus puree and sweet potatoes with a touch of cinnamon (Recipes from the cooking for baby book).

Drew loves sweet potatoes. We can pretty much mix anything he doesn't like with them so he will eat it. We decided to take it a step further and add a touch of cinnamon for some added flavor. Drew loves this.

Asparagus: When my husband was at the store this past week he was looking for regular green asparagus, but they only had white. So, we went ahead and made that. He doesn't seem to love them, but doesn't dislike them either. They have a pretty mild taste. We took a bunch of white asparagus and removed the woody ends. We than steamed them until tender (about 7-9 minutes) and rinsed them in cold water to stop the cooking. Finally, we pureed them in a food processor until smooth. The cookbook notes that if baby is reluctant to eat this, stir in apple or pear puree. Store in airtight container in fridge for up to three days or freeze for up to three months.

Green Beans with Mint & Olive Oil: Boil a half pound of fresh green beans until tender and bright green (about 7-9 minutes). Drain and rinse under cold water to stop the cooking. Puree beans with 2 tbsp of water and 1 tbsp of fresh mint. After it is pureed, stir in 2 tbsp of olive oil (optional). Store in airtight container for up to three days (Note: I went ahead and froze some). I am not sure if it is because we used fresh green beans, and/or because they were boiled instead of steamed, but these pureed much better than the last batch. Drew also enjoys this much better than plain green beans.
Barnes, Lisa. Cooking for Baby. Gold Street Press, page 33.

Saturday, March 7, 2009

New fave spoons!

I have had trouble finding spoons that really "work" well for Olivia. We have tried a couple different kinds, and they all seem to have some sort of flaw. 

I finally found some I love! (Also, the site I linked has them on sale!). They are natural bamboo, which is just a plus for my eco-loving self. They are super smooth and the bowl of the spoon is perfect!

Just thought I would share!

Sunday, March 1, 2009

So this week our new foods were cauliflower and peaches. Cauliflower may just be Drew's new favorite food for now. For the cauliflower, we just took a half a head of cauliflower and steamed it until tender (about 10 minutes). We than used the food processor and blended it with a little bit of formula. I just give it to Drew straight up, I haven't mixed it with any other foods yet.
As for peaches, I bought a frozen bag a peach slices. This way, I get two uses out of them. First, I can put a frozen peach in Drew's mesh feeder to help with his teething. Second, I can thaw out a slice or two at a time (about 50 seconds in defrost mode in the microwave) and chop them into pieces for Drew to eat as regular. The are a little difficult for him to pick up with his hand yet, so most the time I use a spoon to feed it to him or stir in the pieces with his oatmeal for breakfast. He was not a fan of the peaches at first; in fact, he gagged a little than spit up his first try. But now he really enjoys them.

(Drew is 7 1/2 months now)