As I have been making baby food again I have been reflecting on how the meals I prepare for my family evolve as the children grow. Now that Seth has been introduced to a variety of foods without reaction, I can confidently prepare larger amounts of these foods to freeze/store; he is also eating more and more every week so the portions I need to prepare are larger.
Here is a batch of baby food I made a couple of weeks ago- carrot/zucchini (a nice combination!), sweet potatoes, pears, and a lovely blend of mango and papaya. I tend to make baby food in batches- once I get going it's easy to bust it out.
Here is the pear puree ready for freezing. I am using larger containers for the bigger batch. I still used baby cubes for some of the purees. Here they are cleaned, sterilized by boiling and ready. The baby cubes are still handy for single sized portions and are easy to throw into a cooler when we are on the go. I also store uneaten leftovers in them occasionally.
And of course here is a meal ready to be served. Now that we are clear of food reactions I am more confident combining the purees; I also think it is beneficial to have the baby taste foods individually before offering them mixed, especially vegetable/fruit combinations. Here is a meal- carrot/zucchini, prunes with amaranth and sweet peas/pears. Here is another meal (being served, thanks to my daughter Jenny for the picture) of squash/blackberry (also a yummy combo) with sweet peas/applesauce.
It is easy to see how the baby meal evolves into this meal (to the left) prepared for my 7 year old, and then into the vegetable curry I made for the adults to pour over the quinoa/rice/chick pea/kidney bean/brown rice mixture (below)
I think my approach to our family's food plan is consistent even though it assumes different forms for each age (and personality) I am preparing for- the ingredients are pretty much the same. The rest is simply the preparation/presentation. No matter how it is served up, we all eat a diet of fresh whole foods, keeping a lot of color on each plate and as little processing as possible. Nutrition IS the foundation to a healthy lifestyle; I sincerely believe this to be true. Interestingly, this manner of eating is simple as pie; good news for someone like myself who isn't a recipe chef :) Fortunately nobody in my house is complaining- it is what they are used to. Healthy is our way of life day to day after day after day......... I take tremendous pride in knowing that my family is nurtured by the nutrition I give to them.