Approaching mother’s day I’ve been reflecting back on becoming a mother myself. We all know how time flies and it seems like just yesterday I was feeding my kids their very first bites of food. I’ve always loved being there for a first taste of something new. Their first apple, strawberry, broccoli, fish, etc. I still enjoy that. But now it’s first escargot, starfruit, escarole, etc. Sometimes I think being a new mom was easier than where I am today. I’d take sloppy kisses and naps, any day over eye rolling and working school carline. Although certainly while you are in the thick of it (diapers, no sleep, constant crying), you can’t imagine. If only you had the sleep and awareness when they are babies, to appreciate every minute.
Right now I know lots of mom’s with babies. Some are just starting motherhood while others have new babies to add to their families. So here’s to new and experienced moms alike. And to the new flavors and experiences we introduce them to. Whether our kids are 6 months, 6 years, 26 years or 66 years. We can always come up with firsts and new foodie adventures. But be careful…it’s not always pretty.
Apple Puree (The Petit Appetit Cookbook, page 59)
Apples are a great first food because of their sweetness and versatility. Besides being for baby, this puree can be used in all kinds of recipes. Use it to sweeten baked goods, as a topping for pancakes, or even to dress up grilled meats.
Golden and Red Delicious as well as Fuji apples have the least amount of acid, and thus are the most tolerant for babies. You may peel apples before or after cooking. Cooking with skins on allows the apples to retain more nutrients. Be sure to choose organic apples as they are number 1 on the Dirty Dozen list for pesticides.
6 medium (2-3 ounce) organic apples, washed, quartered and cored just before cooking
Place prepared apples in steamer basket set in a pot filled with a small amount (about 1 – 2 inches, but not to touch fruit) of lightly boiling water. Cover tightly for best nutrient retention and steam for 10 – 12 minutes or until apples are tender. Apples should pierce easily with a toothpick. Set apples and cooking liquid aside to cool.
Scrape apples for skin and puree in a food processor with a steel blade. Add 1 or 2 tablespoons of reserved cooking liquid to puree to make smoother and adjust consistency.
Makes 16 – 18, one ounce baby servings.
TIP: An apple a day…When baby is ready for more texture, chunks on steamed apples are good finger foods. Also for teething baby, put steamed apple slices in the freezer for a soothing treat.
First Fish (The Petit Appetit Cookbook, page 98)
This is an easy way to prepare fish for your baby or toddler. Because of the mild and “non-fishy” taste, Tilapia is a good introduction to seafood for a little one. Fish can be thinned with reserved cooking broth or mix with plain yogurt or cottage cheese for a more creamy texture.
1 cup organic vegetable broth
2, (4 ounce) white fillets
Heat broth in a medium skillet over medium-high heat until simmering. Add fish fillets. Broth should not cover fish, but come up about halfway. Simmer fish 3 to 4 minutes per side or until opaque. Fish should flake easily with a fork. Remove fish from pan and mash to desired consistency, or puree with some of the cooking liquid in a food processor.
TIP: No bones about it. Be sure to check fish carefully for small bones before feeding to baby. Fillets have fewer bones than steaks.