So we recently went to an “Introducing Solids” workshop with our NCT class leader which quite honestly taught me a lot about weaning. For those of you that know me, Nigella Lawson I am not … well when it comes to cooking at least.
Zak always laughs at my cooking – my speciality being a spaghetti bolognaise or a chilli (essentially a spag bol with a bit of chili powder and replace the rice with pasta). I can however tell you the best of Tesco Finest Range compared to Sainsbury’s Taste the Difference meals. With my dad being not only French, a trained chef and his claim to fame being opening Liverpool’s first patisserie on Lark Lane, you would have thought I would have picked up a few tips on the way… Instead I developed a penchant for cakes, be indifferent that i’d get home from school and we’d be having pheasant for dinner and used to say that one of my favourite foods as a child was escargots (insert eek face emoji here).
And now here I am faced with having to feed my child and teach them good habits! Layla is nearing 6 months and is still exclusively breast fed (this is not by choice but more that she turns into the fucking Exorcist when you try to give her a bottle). Perseverance I hear you say? – we currently have 12 different types of bottles, have tried different formulas – Aptamil, Cow & Gate, Hipp Organic and SMA and have listened to her “why are you trying to torture me with this latex piece of shit” screams one too many times – it was harder in the beginning when my boobs used to fill each time she cried, the worst was when they just used to squirt her in the face as I was trying to put a bottle in her mouth. So I resigned myself to keep going until she was ready for solids and here we are…
How did I know she was ready for solids? – at around 5 months she started to show interest in what we were eating, licking her lips and making “mmm” sounds – emulating her mum as I tucked into a Magnum ice-cream. Her new talent is also putting everything into her mouth and favourite chewable toy is her fist. The NHS recommends from 6 months but as I say to EVERY mum I meet – trust your instincts, you know your baby better than anyone and will see when their food habits change.
So for the first 6-8 months they say you should start with:
- Vegetables (avoiding potatoes, tomatoes, peppers)
- Fruits (avoiding citrus fruits)
- Pulse and grains (avoid if there are any signs of allergies)
- Protein (small amounts of fish, poultry and meat)
- Dairy (should be full fat yoghurts /cheeses
Foods to avoid when weaning? – full list here
So with that in mind, what did I try first? We’ve gone with purees which is different to Baby Led Weaning (BLW) meaning they feed themselves by picking and choosing what they want to try and based on what you eat. I think the best story I heard from one of the girls was how her baby loved sucking on a chicken leg aged just 6 months! ‘Kin’ell one step at a time love…
So here is my really adventurous recipe:
Baked carrot and parsnip puree -make sure you give the vegetables a good wash before peeling. I then cut them into strips, drizzled a bit of olive oil over them and placed into the oven to bake until they were soft (you can also steam the vegetables, but avoid boiling as this decreases the nutrients). Unfortunately given my cooking skills I mention above, I burned the shit out of some of the parsnips (which myself and Zak later hoovered up). From those that we salvaged, I added to the blender with a bit of Aptamil formula mix until it reached a puree form. Layla’s verdict? …
This seemed to go down really well, that was until she started choking / gagging on a random bit of carrot. You’ve never felt panic until you think your kid is choking. Main thing to remember – STAY CALM. A top tip is to blow into their faces and the baby will automatically take a deep breath in which could help dislodge – try it. There was recently a feature on This Morning video circulating around the web on what to do if your baby does start to choke – worth a watch
Our next taste sensation was mashed avocado and banana (with breast milk) which unfortunately didn’t go down as well. The best thing abut weaning your child? Watching the faces they pull as they taste new things!
In terms of amounts, they say you should start with an ice-cube sized portion which leads me into my next point about where to store the purees I took over one of our ice trays – it’s not like I need them for my vodka-lemos any more 😦 Simply pop one into your baby bowl when you need it and slowly heat it up by placing into hot water. Nuking it in the microwave runs the risk of it being too hot in the middle and burning baby’s tongue. Don’t forget breastfed babies are only really used to “room temperature” liquids so it could be a shock for them.
This green shit you see is not gone off breast milk – but the remainder of our avo / banana delight stored in Breast milk storage bags ready for the freezer!
Would love to hear of any ideas / tips …
Right on that note, i’m off to make Zak’s dinner… need to ease off on the Deliveroo seeing how he recently had a bit of road rage with the delivery driver who dropped our curry off last week and nobody likes Madras with a side of spit.
Bon appetit babeses x
DISCLAIMER : Please note I am not a food expert / nutritionist and only write about my own experiences