On a trip overseas, in a very hilly area in North Yorkshire UK, I did a bit of perusing of baby shops and the baby food situation over there and I must say I was aghast. Pureed vegetable lasagne for a 7 month old baby?! Unbelievable. Row upon row of shelves selling baby food. Does nobody cook over there anymore? And the cost. 99p or around $2.00 AUD for a jar (190g). I’ve often joked that if my old clients in Manchester/Salford could puree a pie and mushy peas they would. I may have been not far from the truth. I shook my head and despaired. Then I saw labels such as “Like grandma used to make” and “Grandma’s Sunday lunch”. Very subliminal marketing. Not impressed. At. All. I even saw a pre-packed Sunday lunch of meat and veggies for a 10 month old baby/ toddler. Jamie Oliver must be horrified – as was I. It cost 1.49 English Pounds or $3.00 AUD.
After 7 months old babies can have your food and it needn’t be pureed. Purees of food delay speech development. It looked like baby led weaning and finger foods had been eclipsed.
I remember asking my clients at Basger’s Pharmacy in North Bondi about bringing jars of baby food into the pharmacy and they said a very loud NO!
So, today’s blog is a must. Don’t be frightened of food. It’s not that scary. Honest. I’m going to give you a few non-cook purees to arm yourself with. Tried and tested and nutritious. These are all safe for 6 month plus babies.
Just mash with a fork and use ripe fruit and avocados. They mash easier and are better to digest. Unripe bananas cause tummy ache.
- My all time favourite – banana and avocado. How yummo is this? I eat it too and love it. I’ve introduced it into the local fruit and veg shop in the Yorkshire Dales where my sis lives, with her bub, Freya. I’ll let you know if their avocado sales rocket!
- Another top puree is pear (tinned in own juice), ricotta and dried mint. Easy as. Just use a fork to blend. A few small lumps will cause no harm and we only puree because we think bub wants smooth food. Some bubs are more than happy with a bit of texture. When mangoes are in season they make a great alternative and it is a Bondi favourite – mango, ricotta with a hint of mint. Yummo!
- If you’re not keen on ricotta or can’t find it then substitute with full fat yoghurt. Any full fat adult yoghurt will do. You do not need to use baby yoghurt for a baby, its all in the marketing.
- Another food cupboard staple is Weetbix, mix with baby’s milk or full cream cows milk. No sugar needed – think of their teeth. One biscuit of Weetbix has as much iron as a serve of red meat! Genius.
- Baked beans are another superfood and puree really easily. Again just use a fork. They are rich in iron, fibre and have a low glycaemic index to fill bub’s tum for ages.
- Canned tuna in olive oil mixed with ricotta and avocado.
So hopefully I’ve given you a few ideas. All easy purees, no cooking involved. All you need is a bowl and a fork to mash the foods. And the best bit is they’re all really ridiculously healthy with no artificial fillers. Win-win!
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