Friday, 21 June 2013

Food Friday

So here is the first of my "Food Friday" posts :)

I'm not naturally adventurous in the kitchen but this post is dedicated to The Alpha Parent whose post (see here) gave me a mental kick up the backside to stop using baby jars/pouches - thank you!

This week we've experimented with a new breakfast, three main courses and various finger foods. For anyone wondering - Doof doesn't have any teeth yet. And all the main courses can be frozen (Doof doesn't eat enough yet for me to want to cook single portions of anything!).


I was surprised when I realised just how much sugar is in the "baby" cereals specifically targeted to our children. For example total carbohydrate in 100g (and amount sugaring):
- Organix wholegrain porridge: 66g (17g)
- Heinz baby porridge: 64.2g (23.5g)

Whereas in
- Cornflakes: 84g (8g)
- Oatbix: 30.9g (1.5g)
I know which I'd prefer my baby ate!
So here is a very quick & easy to make breakfast (preparation time approximately 2 minutes) which is way more healthy than any baby-specific ones.

Half an oatbix
3 tablespoons of milk
1 small carton of yoghurt (I used plum organic from age frais)
2 tablespoons of fruit purée (I used a pot of Hipp Organic apple/pear puree but you could equally just mash up a banana or pear)

Crumble the oatbix in a bowl.
Add the milk and mix thoroughly.
Then add the yoghurt and fruit purée.
Serve within the next hour.

So the proof is in the eating... and Doof loved it! I was a bit worried he might not as he was used to the high sugar content of his baby porridge but it was a hit :)


Finger foods:

Doof has become much more interested in finger foods and feeding himself in the last 2-3 weeks. He really enjoys feeding himself so I try to give him something he can hold and eat at every meal - these are the new FF he's had this week...

Cheese on toast - hit! Also so easy to make, took about 2 minutes under the grill. Don't forget (like I did the first time!) to toast the other side first though!


Poached chicken strips - not a big hit. He licked one, pulled a face and then refused to go back for second try. To be fair to him it was day old cold chicken and so rather slimy and dry. Think he might prefer the brown meat more as its more juicy, and also when it has been more recently cooked.

Mashed banana on rice cakes - hit! So simple but so delicious. Doof enjoyed sucking the bandana off first and then gumming the rice cake to destruction :) Even my husband, who doesn't eat much fruit/veg and would never dream of eating a rice cake loved them!

This afternoon we're going to try grated cheese as a FF with his pasta (see below)

Main courses:

Chicken surprise (titled because of the fruit combination in it - a bit strange but delicious)


1 chicken breast
250ml chicken stock (I used Heinz cook-at-home stock cubes rather than boiling up a chicken carcass - they have less salt in them than normal stock cubes)
Half sweet potato
1 pot Hipp Organic apple/peach/mango fruit purée 

Poach the chicken breast for 15 minutes (or until cooked right through) and then cut into small pieces.
Put a skewer through the sweet potato and bake in oven at 180 degrees for approx 1 hour (check the inside is soft by feeling any resistance when you move the skewer inside).
Make up the stock cube as per instructions.
Add the stock to the chicken and purée to desired consistency. Doof is "stage 2" now so I'm not puréeing to smooth paste but having a few lumps in there. Using 250ml stock gave it the right consistency for us - depending on how smooth you want the end result you could add more or less stock.
Scoop the flesh out of the cooked sweet potato and mash in a bowl.
Add the fruit pot and mashed sweet potato to the purée. 

This made 2x 170ml portions and was a big hit with Doof. It is very juicy but not too sweet. Lovely combination of flavours.

Cheesy courgette pasta ( really easy to make - I had it simmering on the job whilst making our supper)

1 carrot
1 courgette
1 tin chopped tomatoes
Handful of grated cheddar cheese
Knob of butter

Chop the carrot and courgette up into thin slices and sauté in pan with the butter.
When soft (after about 5 minutes) add the tomatoes and keep on the heat to let the liquid reduce slightly.
Then add the cheese and stir for a short time until cheese melted.
Remove from heat.
Once cool, purée to desired consistency.

This made 8 x 160ml portions so I froze 7 and kept one in the fridge for lunch today.


To the portion I didn't freeze I added 2 spoons of cooked pasta (have used both these types with Doof), mixed it all together and then it's ready for eating :)


You could also use this as a sauce without adding the pasta - I'm going to add some puréed meat to some. 

Chicken veg 

This one you could make with any vegetables you have at home. I emptied the fridge and used the ones below.

1 chicken breast
Half sweet potato
1 carrot
1/4 leek
1/4 red pepper
500ml chicken stock (see above recipe)

Cook the chicken and sweet potato as in the recipe above.
Make up stock according to instructions and put over heat.
Cut the carrot, pepper and leek into small pieces and add to stock.
Simmer for around 20 minutes until veg are soft, then add the chicken pieces.
After 5 minutes remove from the heat.
Meanwhile scoop the flesh out of the cooked sweet potato and mash in a bowl.
Once cool purée the chicken mixture as required and then add in the sweet potato mash.

This made 4 x 150ml portions.


So that's what we've cooked this week. I've actually really enjoyed it and its so much more rewarding watching Doof enjoy something I've made rather than a baby jar. I also know exactly what has gone into the food and how much - so even if he eats less volume I know he is still getting much more protein/vitamins/right balance of food groups :)

I need to think what to make next week - definitely at least one fish dish. If you have any recipes you love or an ingredient you'd like me to try and incorporate then leave a comment and I'll try my best :)


  1. I'm so impressed by how you're introducing new foods! My son is on the autism spectrum and we've had such a hard time with eating. You inspire me and I thank you.

    1. Aw thank you so much, that's so kind! I'm really lucky that (so far at least...) Doof has been a really good eater and although he definitely has his favourites, he is happy to try nearly everything - apart from poached chicken strips! Fingers crossed it continues into toddlerhood..