Thursday, April 26, 2018

MYO Baby Food

April 1, 2018

Control what goes into your baby’s food by making homemade baby food in your own kitchen. It is easier than you might think.

Baked Apples
Preheat oven to 350 degrees F., then wash and core apples. Wrap each apple in a square of aluminum foil, and seal tightly. Bake for 30 to 45 minutes, testing with a fork for desired softness. Remove foil, skin, and core. Mash apples. Count on two to three apples to produce 1 cup of mashed apple. You can use the same method for pears, which will reach the desired softness within 15 to 30 minutes.

Pureed Meats
Cut meat into 1/2-inch cubes. Trim off all fat. Add 1 cup of stock (either meat or vegetable) to 1 cup of meat. Simmer until meat is tender – 45 minutes to an hour. Drain stock, reserving the liquid. When you puree, use l/2 cup of cooking liquid for each cup of meat. Freeze extra portions immediately.

Pureed Legumes
Carefully rinse and pick over 1 cup of any legume. Soak in water overnight or bring to a boil for 2 minutes, cover, and then allow to sit for 2 hours. Drain off the soaking water or the cooking water, then add 3 cups fresh water and bring beans to a boil. Reduce heat and simmer, covered, until beans are tender (anywhere from 30 minutes to 2 hours, depending on your choice of legume). Skim the surface often as beans are simmering. Puree with 3/4 cup milk. Freeze unused portions immediately.

Sweet Potatoes
Scrub sweet potatoes and bake at 450 degrees F. for 40 to 50 minutes, testing with a fork for desired softness. Allow to cool. Peel, then mash with a fork, adding vegetable cooking juices, milk, or a bit of apple juice. Acorn squash can be substituted for sweet potato.

Vegetable Purees
Cut vegetables into small pieces and steam them in a vegetable steamer over 1 or 2 inches of water in a tightly-covered pot. Use this water as a thinner when pureeing vegetables. The approximate ratio of vegetables to liquid is 2 cups of fresh vegetables to between 1/3 to 1/2 cup of liquid. Place steamed vegetables and a little of the steaming water in a food processor or baby-food grinder and puree to a soft consistency. To add flavor and protein, try adding an equal amount of baked or steamed potato to the steamed vegetables and puree together. Thin mixture with milk to desired consistency. Freeze unused portions immediately.

Combination Dinner
Place 1 cup cooked meat, 2/3 cup cooked vegetables, 1/3 cup cooked white or brown rice, and 1 cup stock in a blender or food processor. Puree, and freeze leftover portions immediately. Yield should be approximately 3 cups.

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