Are you my Mommy?

Are you my Mommy?
Are you my Mommy?

Monday, September 12, 2011

Baby Food Lesson #1: Freeze it

I know my kiddo is not really at the baby food age anymore, but I know that there is a lack of helpful information out there (this was part of my muse and encouragement to begin blogging...yep, all good arises from frustration, especially of the internet persuasion.)  Today I share with you a tip that I still use, which is how to freeze baby food. I know you have used your freezer since you were two years old and could ask for a Popsicles or to used it to do "science experiments," but you need a few specific tips to improve the quality of your frozen baby food. 
  1. Freeze as quickly as possible (either quickly after cooking the meal or right when fruit is perfectly ripe) to retain nutrients
  2. Freeze fresh, organic when possible (note: Mr. B began baby food in winter time and even in modern times some foods are not available fresh even non-organic such as plums, so I wish I had frozen ahead of time...although it gave me opportunity to find out he likes prunes...weirdo in the making, I know)
  3. Freeze in a new state of being to retain nutrients.  For example, do not thaw already frozen foods and freeze unless you cook them first.
  4. IQF foods make easy baby food. 
    I used to take cherries, blueberries, mangoes, spinach, peas, etc that I bought frozen and thaw only one portion and since they are loose in the bag thanks to IQF, this was easy and yet still homemade and preservative free
  5. Freeze all purees thick.  I never thinned prior to freezing because I preferred to thin as needed with breastmilk to increase nutrients and as he got older i still had previously frozen cubes that I did not have to waste because the thicker purees were preferred.
  6. Freeze in ice cube trays and then transfer to gallon size bags. I did the research and all major makers of these that I looked up report to be BPA free (yea, a small victory for moms)
  7. Freeze in 1/2 ounce portions, which is contrary to available advice, but my kid only ate small amounts. So even when he got older the smaller portions allowed me to offer him a variety of foods to increase nutritional value
  8. Most things can be frozen. I had no trouble feeding even frozen cooked grains once thinned.  He did not mind a small texture change.  Even avocados will freeze if first pureed with fresh, ripe mango, which is highly nutritious and the combo seemed to keep the mango from browning.  And I try all his food and this was so yummy and creamy. They are great as baby Popsicles for teething or fever
  9. Frozen baby food does not mean single ingredient items.  For example, I freeze cooked grains with the fruit in it, lentils cooked with onions and herbs, custards, soups, mixed fruit purees, bean dip, even yogurt and breast milk with no trouble.
  10. Here is a link to the freezer tray I recommend because it is BPA free, comes with a cover, and has 1/2 ounce portions.

I still use this to store food for Mr. B because he does not always like what he eat and at times needs a meal when family watches him.

Here is a picture of it filled with coconut brown rice that I froze recently.  At his age he needs the nutritious fat, so this is a great add -on to any meal. And if he tires of it during a meal, it makes the best all natural shrapnel a 15 month old can find.

 with the lid on
 with the lid off

In case you want to make this, here is the link for the recipe. By the way, I used olive oil (that's what we use most of the time) and I served with a squeeze of fresh lime.  Compliments any Asian dish and is so yummy.  the nuttiness of the brown rice with the creamy, richness of coconut to add mouth feel...well you just gotta try it. Got rave reviews from all my girls for girls night out in.

Coconut Brown Rice

Keeping it cold,

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