I just want to start this off by saying that this is not a tutorial and I am not advocating that people feed their baby the way I do. A couple of people asked me how making food for Pearl has been going so I thought I would share. I am not an authority on anything involving the kitchen. Not at all. We eat cereal for dinner most nights. Anyway...
I started Pearl on solids about a month ago. I waited until she was around six months. I chose to make purees at home after going to the store to buy rice cereal. The first two boxes I picked up had like 20 ingredients and I didn't know what half of them were. I decided to have more control over what was going into her body at first.
We didn't even have a food processor (I never needed one before since I don't really cook). We did zero research. Jeremy went out and bought the Baby Bullet. It was nice because it came with baby food containers for refrigerator and freezer storage, and everything can be washed in the dishwasher. So far, it has worked well for me.
I talked to Pearl's pediatrician about good foods to start with and I got a book for some ideas. The cookbook that came with the Baby Bullet has been helpful as well. Her pediatrician recommended I introduce a new food every four days. I buy almost exclusively organic fruits and vegetables for her although if something is on the clean list I may choose not to.
She eats her new solid during her second feeding of the day (usually around 11am). Then at the fourth feeding (somewhere around dinner time) she eats foods that have already been introduced. She has had enough solids now that I have started doing combinations of foods at this feeding.
Yams are Pearl's favorite.
I make a batch every four days in the morning before I introduce her new food. The foods that need cooked first take a little longer, but I'm generally done with the whole process within 15 minutes. At first I was checking the cookbooks to determine what needed to be cooked and for how long, but I've realized that it's obvious what needs cooked and what doesn't to be soft enough to go into the food processor.
After I am done making the purees, I fill three baby food containers and put them in the refrigerator. Then I freeze the rest in small portions (usually around 6 more servings). After those are frozen, I pop them out and put the individual servings together in a freezer bag. If I am giving her food from the freezer, I will move the morning portion to the refrigerator at bed time and the afternoon portion to the refrigerator in the morning. I bought little plastic bowls that have lids at Target to thaw the frozen food in (and serve from).
The foods she has had so far are: yams, apples, avocados, bananas, peas, pears, and green beans. Avocados and bananas don't need to be processed, so those are really easy! So far Pearl has really hated peas, but seems to like everything else. Yams were clearly her favorite individual food and her favorite combo is yams and apples with a little bit of cinnamon.
She eats quite a bit, but still has milk at those feedings as well. I breastfeed her after she eats her purees. In a couple of weeks, I will add a third solids feeding to her schedule.
Overall, it has been a pretty painless process. I also like that it forces me to buy produce once a week so Jeremy and I eat more fruits and vegetables as well.