Little J is getting on really well with weaning, so much so, that we’ve dropped one of his bottles, and he’s now on 3 bottles a day.
J’s had such culinary delights in the past week as cottage pie, lentils and sweet potato, chicken tikka masala, tomato and basil pasta, and home made burger and salad.
Some of these have been recipes from Annabel Karmel’s book New Complete Baby and Toddler Meal Planner. As we decided to follow the baby-led weaning route, I wasn’t sure that this book would be of any use, as it starts of with purees then mashed food, before finger food a lot later on.
I thought however, that I would give some of the recipies a go and just not puree. It’s been pretty good so far, though I must admit, I have followed the Lovely Lentils recipe to the letter including pureeing as I wasn’t sure how J would eat it otherwise. I’ve used the resulting puree to spread on toast or for J to dip veggies into and he’s enjoyed it.
The Lovely Lentils recipe includes sweet potato, which J loves, plus carrot, so J gets an extra vegetable hit. It freezes well, so I have several pots in the freezer ready to take out in the morning for J to have later that day.
My notes on the other recipes we’ve tried:
Chicken and apple balls -found in the 9 – 12 months section. I added some grated red pepper too. The recipe suggests that these chicken balls are fried in shallow oil for about 5 minutes, however, I found that unless constantly moved, they tended to burn slightly on the outside. Since then, I’ve baked them in the oven instead, on a greased baking sheet, for around 20 minutes, turning them every 6 – 7 minutes. Very handy if I’m also baking some sweet potato wedges at the same time. I found that making a large batch of these and freezing them prior to cooking is good, as you can then take a few out in the morning to defrost for the evening meal.
Cottage pie – also in the 9 – 12 months section. Decided to make this for all the family. I did puree the meat as the recipe suggested, to make it easier for J to eat. Made for a strange consistency for Mr N and I! Tasted ok though. I tried feeding J a little of this from a spoon but he was more interested in mushing it in his hands (see pic above) and smearing it over his face. He did manage to get some in his mouth and seemed quite delighted with the taste.
Tomato and basil pasta sauce – found in the 7 – 9 month section. Again, thought we’d all try this. Instead of using fresh tomatoes, I used the tinned variety, and added extra cream cheese rather than just the 2 teaspoons suggested. Was very yummy! J loved it too, and he managed to grab the pasta coated in the sauce and eat it well.
One tip if you are doing baby-led weaning, it is messy, so be prepared – we use a cheap shower curtain underneath J’s high chair to catch any spillages or thrown food (J loves to chuck things on the floor or over his shoulder!).
I’m always on the lookout for more tasty recipes that babies love, so if you know of any, please feel free to comment!