Healthy and comforting weaning recipes for the season

Now that we are slap bang in the middle of autumn, the dark nights really have started to draw in a lot earlier.

 

Those balmy evenings at the start of the season almost feel like a distant memory by now. So as you look out of the window, the seasonal changes probably mean that you’re looking for some inspiration in what to cook for the family.

 

The good news is that autumn and winter really do win when it comes to comfort food.

 

 

Seasonal ingredients                          

 

Seasonal ingredients are popping up in abundance, which is great news for weaning babies.

 

Pumpkins, squashes and root vegetables are excellent choices to introduce as a baby’s first foods, and versatile enough to use in a whole variety of ways.

 

The even better news is that this season’s bounty of fresh vegetables not only form the basis of a balanced and healthy diet, but can also help with fussy eaters as they grow. Introducing a baby to lots of fruit and vegetables early, and enjoying the same foods at mealtimes can lead to them being less fussy as they get older.

 

So what better excuse to tuck into a pot of healthy, wholesome comfort food as we head into winter?

 

Simple pumpkin and apple purée

 

Freeze this purée so that you can defrost on demand for a super simple yet tasty treat for little ones who prefer spoon or combination feeding.

 

INGREDIENTS:

  • 200g chopped pumpkin
  • 2 peeled and chopped eating apples
  • Water

 

  1. Chop the pumpkin, place in a microwave in a bowl with 50ml water and cook until soft. Keep checking to make sure that it doesn’t dry out and add more water if necessary. Remove when soft.
  2. Peel and chop the apple, and repeat step above, adding water and cooking until soft.
  3. Combine the pumpkin with the apple in a blender. Add a couple of tablespoons of water at a time until the purée is smooth.
  4. Cool and serve.

 

 

Cauliflower egg muffins

 

These are perfect for self-feeders and can either be eaten warm, cooled for snacks or a lunchbox treat, or frozen.

 

INGREDIENTS:

  • 300g cauliflower
  • 4 eggs
  • 100g grated cheese

 

  1. Grease muffin / cupcake trays and set aside. Preheat oven at 190oC.
  2. Cut the cauliflower into medium pieces and blitz in a food processor until it looks like couscous.
  3. Add the cheese and mix in.
  4. Whisk the eggs and pour over the mixture
  5. Cook for 15-20 minutes until firm but still spingy.
  6. Cool and serve.

 

Sausage and vegetable casserole

 

A one-pot meal is ideal for weaning babies, and for the whole family to enjoy. Simply mash the baby’s portion up with a fork, or for a smoother consistency, use a blender.

 

INGREDIENTS:

  • Chopped vegetables (1 large onion, 1 large carrot, 1 stick of celery, 300g butternut squash, 200g mushrooms, 1 red pepper, 2 medium tomatoes)
  • 2 cloves of garlic
  • 8 sausages (meat or meat-free)
  • 400ml passata
  • 1 tbsp balsamic vinegar
  • 100ml low-salt chicken stock
  • 1 cup lentils
  • 1 cup frozen peas
  • olive oil

 

  1. Heat the oil over a medium heat, and fry the onion, celery and garlic until light brown.
  2. Add the carrot, butternut squash, mushroom, red pepper, tomatoes and balsamic vinegar. Cook for a further 5 minutes.
  3. Add the passata, stock, and lentils, bring to a boil. Reduce heat, cover and simmer for 50 minutes.
  4. Add the peas for the last 5 minutes of cooking time.
  5. Cool and serve.

 

 

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