Tag Archives: Solids

Simple ingredient substitutes

Remember when you were pregnant and they said no more soft cheese, no more processed meats, avoid seafood and pre-packaged salads. Well starting solids is a very similar mine field.  You might find out early on through breastfeeding if you child has any major intolerance’s  Otherwise it’s a game of Russian roulette! No it’s not that bad.

However our little babies have immature digestive systems and their little organs may not be able to cope with an abundance of certain minerals a particular food may provide. ‘Which Foods When’ is a great chapter from Dr Jennifer Barham-Floreani’s book ‘Well Adjusted Babies’. You can buy the chapter as an eBook from her site.  I find it extremely informative and it has great tables that can be printed and stuck on the fridge.  From all the various research I’ve done, most professionals in this field tend to recommended trialing new foods on their own and over a period of 3 days to monitor any reactions.

If you’re like me and ask Dr Google everything – “Can my baby have smoked salmon?”.  You will find an absolute wealth of information,. So far I’ve found the internet the most helpful tool and the iPad the second on this whole parenting journey.  The best thing is we have access to this information at our finger tips, it is always evolving and improving as more and more research is conducted. Just ask your mum when you ate eggs and had cow’s milk as a baby.

Below are some substitutes for common allergens. I’ve used all three and they have worked perfectly fine.

Egg Substitute

As a binding agent (Hold it together):

1 banana for 1 egg
1/4 cup apple sauce for one egg
1 tablespoon of ground flax seeds mixed with 2 to 3 tablespoons of hot water – allow thickening and cooling then use.

As a Leavening agent (Help it rise):

1-1/2 tablespoons vegetable oil mixed with 1-1/2 tablespoons water and 1 teaspoon baking powder per egg.

Wheat-free (and gluten-free) flours:

Rice flour is the easiest and cheapest flour to use as it is found is almost every supermarket. You generally substitute cup for cup in recipes. Other flours include; tapioca starch, potato starch and potato flour.

All-purpose flour mix

4-1/2 cups White Rice Flour
1-1/2 cups Potato Starch (not potato flour)
3/4 cup Tapioca Flour (also called tapioca starch)

Cow’s Milk protein:

Dr Jennifer Barham-Floreani (B.App.Clin.Sci, Chiropractic) talks extensively about pasteurised milk’s allergic nature and its effects on infants when introduced too early. Her recommendation is to slowly introduce products with the protein between 12 – 18 months of age. She starts with Organic goat’s milk, moves into cheeses and yoghurts and then organic cow’s milk. I would highly recommend purchasing the e-book ‘Which Foods When’ from her website for $7.95 (This is an excerpt from her book ‘Well Adjusted Babies’)

Soy, rice, potato, almond, oat and coconut milks are all possible substitutes for cow’s milk. These are all readily available in supermarkets especially organic varieties. If you aren’t dealing with a soy allergy, soy milk is a good option because it has similar amounts of nutrients to cow’s milk.

References

www.eatingwithfoodallergies.com

Dr Jennifer Barham-Floreani (B.App.Clin.Sci, Chiropractic), Well Adjusted Babies: Your complete guide to pregnancy, birth, babies and beyond, Which Foods When, Chapter 22: Page 523-565.

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Simple Beef Casserole

I thought I would follow-up with something I actually thought to take a photo of, yummy beef casserole. I will start taking more photos as we cook, would you believe in 10 months I’ve taken 1,238 pictures of just Rafaela!

We started introducing red meat into the diet at the 10 month mark, and we celebrated with this hearty stew! Red meat is a great source of Iron, which is an important dietary mineral. It is essential in providing energy for daily life and is also vital for brain development.

I don’t really cook many casseroles; I came from a household that cooked curries instead. But the smell of this was just divine. It took me back to the day I ate goulash for breakfast, lunch and dinner en-route to Switzerland. It’s the perfect dish for the colder months and I’ve found it a great dish for a teething baby. I’m not sure if it is because it has just the right amount of gravy to go down the hatch without irritating the gums or enough bite to massage the gums. Who knows what goes on in there?

I would have loved to use organic beef for this recipe; however I can only ever find organic beef mince (Woolworths, Aldi & Costco). It’s not a necessity to go organic, but if you can then go for it. It’s more affordable than you think.

Below is the baby friendly recipe. Just add appropriate seasoning for an adult version.

Baby Beef Casserole (This recipe will make around 6 cups)

This can be made in a slow cooker, just read your instructions.

Ingredients:

400g of chunk/stewing meat. Trim away any fat.
I onion, diced
2 garlic cloves crushed
2 organic carrots, slice
1 cup of frozen peas
500ml of organic beef or vegetable stock
200ml of organic diced tomatoes or passata
2 tsp. of organic tomato paste
1 tsp. Worcestershire sauce
2 tbsp. of rice flour (You can use any flour, rice flour is gluten-free)
4-5 sprigs of Fresh thyme
4-6 prunes chopped
Splash of Olive Oil, enough to brown the meat.

Method:

Heat oil in a heavy based saucepan and brown the meat. Remove and set aside.
Add onion and carrots to the pan and sauté for 2 minutes. Add crushed garlic and cook for an additional 2 minutes.
Add the flour to the vegetables and stir to combine. Add the stock, canned tomatoes, tomato paste and Worcestershire sauce. Stir to combine.
Add beef, prunes and thyme, cover with the lid and bring to the boil. Reduce heat and leave simmering  for 1-1 1/2 hours. Stir occasionally, scraping down the sides. In the last 5 minutes remove the lid and add the frozen peas.

For smaller babies puree. For older babies break up the meat with a fork, it should pull apart nicely.

The perfect accompaniments are; sweet potato mash, rice, quinoa, pasta or bread.

This is very freezer friendly.

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Beef Casserole

Shopping tip: Coles and Woolworths both sell organic stock cubes. You can also buy ‘Celebrate Health Organic Stock’ 500ml for $10 at Coles.

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Under Pressure

Hi, my name is Kirsty. I’m a new mum with a 10 month old girl named Rafaela. Being on Maternity Leave has allowed me to spend more time in the kitchen; surprisingly this is a good thing, as I’ve always loved cooking and more importantly eating!

I’m now four months into the journey of ‘introducing solids’ to Rafaela and it has been an energising and inspiring experience all at once. I know that this kind of enthusiasm is not shared by all mums. I know that this part of raising children can be daunting and complicated with the pressure from society being immense. Especially as 20-25% of Aussie kids are overweight or obese.

I’ve named my first post ‘under pressure’ as I think this is an appropriate title and it pretty much sums up my last 10 months with Rafaela.  Becoming a mum is fraught with uncertainty and a paranoid judgement of my choices; let alone writing about it and posting it online.

I’ve felt the pressure to reach for convenient pouches of commercial baby food and there is absolutely nothing wrong with them, well the organic brands at least. They are exactly what they say they are; organic & convenient and Rafaela gobbles them down.  It’s an impressive range and it’s fair to say ‘commercial baby food’ has come a VERY long way.

My foodie bible has been ‘WHAT DO I FEED MY BABY; A STEP BY STEP GUIDE TO STARTING SOLIDS’ by nutritionist Leanne Cooper. I’ve also cross referenced ‘Which Foods When – Getting the Basic’s right’, chapter 22 from Well Adjusted Babies by Dr Jennifer Braham – Floreani. Then the rest is all down to Google and the shopping cart.

I’ll share what we make from scratch, how we adapt our adult food and how we use commercial baby food for those ‘fast food’ moments. I also encourage you to share what you make with me.

IMG_1280I hope that you and your bubba choo enjoy food as much as we do!

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