Wednesday, July 30, 2008

Sweeeet Potato!

So here we go. Making your own baby food is something that I heartily endorse. It's really not very hard, and it can save you a ton of money. For the sake of example I will now demonstrate: How to Make Homemade Veggie-Puree!

I have begun with a humble sweet potato. I love them, and babies love them. My husband loves them too, although he never knew it before marrying me. (His dad hated them so his mom never served them. Our eating habits rub off on our children--let that be a lesson to you!)

I peeled it, sliced it in half, and cubed it. It's a good idea to make the cubes similar in size so that they cook evenly.

I prefer to steam my vegetables. This leaves more nutrients in the veggies than boiling would. I also think steaming increases the water content a little bit helping to make a nice soft puree.

If you've never steamed anything before here's a primer: Open your drawer of random kitchen doodads. Find that weird holey metal thing that opens up like a lotus blossom--you know the one--it's called a steamer basket. It's made to expand to fit almost any sized pot, so pick one of yours and put about 3/4 of an inch of water in the bottom and put the steamer basket inside. Put the lid on the pot and get the water boiling. Then put your vegetables in, replace the lid, and steam the veggies until they offer little resistance to a fork or knife. (If it is taking a while for your vegetables to steam you may need to add more boiling water, or turn the heat down to a lower boil. I have boiled all my water away before and it's no good for your pots, and it leaves your house smelling terrible!!!)

Transfer the vegetables to a food processor and puree! If you don't wait for them to cool then you should leave the rammer/stomper/whatever thing out of the lid so that steam can escape. If the puree is not thin enough for your baby's needs you can add some of the water left over from steaming (Otherwise you can use it in a soup).

Spoon the puree into an ice cube tray. Cover with plastic wrap and put in your freezer.

When the cubes are frozen pop them out of the tray and place them in a freezer bag or container. The little one-ounce portions are perfect. I would put one in a little Tupperware bowl and throw it in the diaper bag. Just as easy as a jar! This is one of the little things I like to do to help "offset the cost" of being a stay-at-home mom:-)


John and Becky Bowler said...

You are so random!!! I'll have to give it a try sometime. :)

Mindy said...

Good idea! I think I will actually try it out. Anything to offset costs and be a good home economizer. (I have heard that if we stay at home moms are smart and frugal we can save as much as a job would bring in!) I am going to try it with carrots too. Anything else you have tried that works? What about fruit? Do you steam the fruit too? I would imagine not but then again, you never know! (I'll check back here for your response.)

Jeanette said...

Hooray for home economics! I have also done butternut squash. ("O" loved that.) I did peas once but he didn't like the texture because pea skins are kind of coarse. I think that's while we always hear about "strained peas." Carrots work too, but some things I've read talk about high nitrite levels in grocery store carrots, but I think it would be fine if they have a varied diet and don't eat carrots all day every day. Fruits work well too. Bananas and peaches are great. When I try pears with "Baby J" I will steam them because they have more texture and "O" had trouble with them. Then you can also do meats too when they get to that stage. Like chicken and broccoli. Then you can add varying ammounts of cooking water and or rice cerial to get it to a consistency your baby likes. Baby foods will last in the freezer for at least three months. Good Luck Mindy! and Happy Birthday!

Melissa said...

Hey those sweet potatoes look familiar. Thanks. Hudson just tasted them last week and seems to like them.


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