We are on to real food with Reid – Yeah! Well, I guess yay and boo since I’m making his food as I did with Elle and it is much trickier finding the time to do it with two kids. We’re mainly doing purees right now so the most efficient (and tastiest) way to do these is by roasting the ingredients. I just wash the ingredients, pop ‘em in the oven, set the timer and puree when done. I love that I can puree right away with my glass Oster blender which I found super cheap at Costco but works even better than my previous more expensive plastic blender.
My baby food cookbooks I have on hand make it easy and actually fun. My two faves are Tyler Florence’s Start Fresh and Kim Laidlaw’s Baby and Toddler on the Go. I love the fun flavor combos each of these books offer. So far Tyler Florence’s Roasted Bananas and Blueberries has been the biggest hit with Reid but he hasn’t turned his nose up to anything. Other yummy ones (that I even eat) are roasted broccoli with parmesan and green bean, kale and potato puree. What’s also awesome about this book is that the recipes grow with the kids and eventually it offers recipes that the whole family can enjoy together.
Baby & Toddler On the Go was an awesome find. It gives explicit directions on roasting, steaming, baking and sautéing different veggies so any mom can figure it out no matter if they cook or not. This book also offers different recipes by age so I can whip up something for my baby or my toddler, and the flavors are really fun. Check out these neat combos they suggest from recipes in the book:
Southern Style Pork – shredded or finely chopped braised pork, peach puree+ braised greens+ cooked barley
Curry Chicken & Veggies – Shredded chicken, sweet potato or carrot puree+ apricot puree + cooked brown rice drizzle of coconut milk +mild curry powder
Now these are a little more exotic than the others but I loved the suggestions. It may seem intimidating at first but creating the purees is super simple and it’s best to make a bunch at one time and either freeze it in the mumi and bubi trays or save it in the fridge for a couple of days.
What’s also great about this cookbook is that is has tons of recipes and combinations for healthy meals on the go for you, your baby, toddler, really anyone, that are also super easy to make. One of the recipes is for frittata bites where she offers five different recipe variations (with directions) including spinach and cheese, asparagus and mozzarella, Mexican chicken and jack, cherry tomato and feta and on it goes. She has a similar format for other recipes like mac n cheese bites, muffins and quiches. You make them in mini muffin pans, making them fun to eat and portable.
This cookbook is a great tool for moms looking for different ideas for healthy lunches for school. She has a section for juices/smoothies, dips, sammies, pinwheels and much more. Forget just baby and toddler – these recipes would be great for any kid or adult. I love that it’s not just a cookbook for the infant years but that it’s a cookbook that I know I will go back to for years.
For now I'm loving seeing my lil guy eat it up and his sis loving feeding him.