The second installment of “All About Baby” is “all about” food. What we’ve done for feeding Perrin isn’t all that different from what someone at home might do if they were doing all of baby’s food from scratch and avoiding convenience or pre-packaged baby food.
Perrin started trying out foods about a week after he turned six months old while we were still living in Sacramento. His first food was pureed sweet potato. About six weeks later, we moved to Congo.
There are some convenience baby foods in Congo. There’s a decent variety of baby cereals and baby purees in jars. We bought some of these to have on hand in case of emergencies. This turned out to be very handy during the week following the March 4th explosions while things here were uncertain. What’s lacking are things like Cheerios and baby crackers, healthy (or reasonable healthy) baby foods that Perrin could feed himself from fairly early on.
I brought a good book of baby food recipes with me and some containers for freezing baby-size portions. I also bought a large baby food mill (great for doing up lots of servings at once) and received a small baby food mill as a gift. All of these things came in very handy. I’d make two or three larger recipes and freeze them and then I’d be good on baby food for a couple of weeks. Sometimes I would puree a single serving of something, either a bit of what we were eating or something I’d cooked up especially for him.
There are a few foods here that I could mash and give Perrin fresh: mango, avocado, and papaya. Plus there’s the old stand-by of plain yoghurt. Unfortunately for me, Perrin doesn’t really like papaya. For the longest time he wouldn’t eat avocado unless it was liberally mixed with yoghurt or sour cream. And mangoes weren’t in season when we arrived and have just now come into season.
It’s not such a big deal now that he’s 15 months old. Although he’s only got 10 teeth (the front eight and two top molars), he does pretty well with lots of foods. So I’m simply being a bit more picky about the recipes I prepare for dinner (no bouillon cubes for example) and he eats what we’re eating.
Perrin enjoys snacking on peanuts, popcorn and cheese cubes. He gets eggs, pancakes, waffles, oatmeal, yoghurt and fruit for breakfasts. Bananas are his favorite food. Melted cheese and peanut butter on bread are lunch staples. He loves guacamole (tomatoes and all). We’re working on more vegetables. He’ll eat a few peas and he tries carrots regularly but has a hard time chewing them. For dinner he likes pizza, enchiladas, tuna noodle casserole, and many other things. Tonight we gave him a taco and he seemed to enjoy it.
That’s all for now, but look for further posts in the “All About Baby” series. I’m planning to write on baby-proofing the house next.