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5a Vegetables: Getting started and making them edible


This article is from the Solid Food for Infants FAQ, by David M. Poduska poduska@cis.ohio-state.edu with numerous contributions by others.

5a Vegetables: Getting started and making them edible

wheaton@loligo.cc.fsu.edu (Mike Wheaton) writes:
> I am in need for recipes for Baby Food for a 8-month-old fussy eater. He
> doesn't seem to like many of the "brand-name" baby foods because most of the
> meat-veggie combinations contain carrots.

From: pburch@roc.mbcr.bcm.tmc.edu (Paula Burch)

I saw a couple of baby recipe books in a book store, but they were
stupid. Lots of complex things that include all sorts of ingredients and
take loads of time to make...if I'm going to cook, I'm going to make
enough for everybody! Plus they contain things I was wanting to hold off
on until the baby's a year old--my list is wheat, all dairy products, egg
whites, nuts, and citrus. (Recommendations for GOOD baby recipe books
hereby requested....)

Will loves carrots, but I haven't given him any since his nose turned
yellow. I wonder if I was feeding him too much beta-carotene, or if
it was coming from my diet, since I eat a lot of carrots. I still feed him
sweet potatoes, though, as they're his favorite, and he seems to be getting
less yellow. (He's certainly not jaundiced, and his doctor says there's no
such thing as too much beta-carotene.)

Is anyone else appalled that the baby rice cereal in the grocery stores
is made from refined white rice? You have to go to a health food store
to buy whole grains for babies. Ridiculous.

Paula Burch

From: owens@gargoyle.uchicago.edu

I've been experimenting with making baby food for my six-month-old, by
cooking vegetables and running them through a food processor. (FP is
not exactly the right tool as it is designed to chop rather than puree,
but it's what we've got.)

Caroline rejected the initial batch of carrots out of hand. I hadn't
cooked them long enough, and ended up with finely ground, rather than
pureed, carrots. Don't be afraid to cook the vegetables until they
are a little soft. Let them whirl around in the Cuisinart for quite a
while, or use a mill. The second batch of carrots was a big hit.
Spinach, surprisingly to me given how strong it tastes, has also been
a win. Tofu, given a little water and enough time in the food
processor, will eventually turn into a nice smooth mess that babies
seem to enjoy. You can add a drop of vanilla for variety. Last week
we tried broccoli, which she gobbled up, but was very fussy that
evening. Suspecting stomach upset, I'm holding off for another week
or so before I try any more of it.

Suggestions for non-vegatable eating children:

1) Frozen vegetables - serve frozen. My kids love still frozen peas and corn.

2) Dipping sauces - serve broccoli with a dish of melted butter and a little
lemon juice squeezed in it and let the child dip the broccoli in the
sauce (carrots, asparagus, etc. can be used. I recommend against
artichokes at this age, however).

3) Corn ON the cob - slice the corn into about 1" thick wheels with the corn

4) Let them cut the vegies, using a dull knife, of course. Baby carrots are
best, but broccoli can be cut by a small child with a butter knife.
Kids like eating things they helped make. And they LOVE having their
parents eat them.

All of the above work well in our house. Of course, my children really enjoy
most foods. They'd rather eat oranges than chocolate (really). I attribute
this to their having more access to chocolate than fruit. Fruit's a treat.

1. Stuff that sticks to the spoon is great. My 16 mo. old has her
best luck with foods such as mashed potatoes, Yoplait Custard Style yogurt,
rice with a cheese sauce, etc.

2. Sometimes it even works to mix up stuff in the 'sticky' stuff...green
bean pieces in mashed potatoes, chopped-up fruit in yogurt, little pieces
of broccoli in rice w/ cheese sauce. (This mixing is riskier, because I
have seen my daughter take one bite, SIGH, and painstakingly pick out all
the chunks I have mixed in, or refuse it altogether. But more and more,
she just eats it...they taste good!).

2. Get several children's forks (regular [metal] forks, only made for
kids so that the tines are really pretty dull, with a short, fat handle.)
Spear his peas for him with one fork, and leave it sitting on his plate
for him to pick up. While he's eating with that fork, load the next one.
Three forks guarantees that he has one for each hand and that you have
one to load. (You will have to somehow get a fork back from him every
now and then)

The above suggestions will help him get some food in his mouth, but
should also encourage him to do more and more himself (at least they
seem to work like this for my daughter.)


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