As every new mother and father know the first few months of their baby’s life are the most important. And their first few months of starting solids is also crucial.
New research shows a Thermomix TM6 has been found to boost nutrient content in every stage of baby-led weaning compared to prepacked food and food made with traditional at home methods.
A nutrition expert from Sydney, NSW has a guide to savvy techniques hiding nutritional filled goodness the little ones love to hate, in everything from purees to ravioli made in the Thermomix.
Food and nutrition writer Louise Keats has developed these recipes to guide mothers through those precious first childhood years in the hopes of raising healthy children through home cooking.
"Whether it’s including ground nuts and seeds in my muffin and pancake recipes or hidden vegetables in my pasta sauces, there are so many ways to give healthy twists to all your favourite dishes with a Thermomix," Louise said.
Louise explains when you and your baby are ready to start first foods a simple one-ingredient puree is the perfect starting point. The Thermomix also heats it to just the right temperature so the nutrition levels stay as high as they possibly can. This is so important for babies so young as food starts to replace milk.
"Whip it up using real ingredients in your Thermomix in no time. Baby gets to enjoy holding the spoon and feeding themselves – and if some makes into their mouth the first time, take it as a bonus," Louise added.
ACTIVE TIME 5 min | TOTAL TIME 30 min | RECIPE MAKES 450 g
500 g water
3 carrots (approx. 400 g), peeled if preferred and cut into pieces (3 cm)
20 g unsalted butter
Recipe by Louise Keats
1. Place water into mixing bowl. Insert simmering basket. Place carrots into simmering basket and cook 25–30 min/100°C/speed 2, until carrots are tender.
2. Remove simmering basket with aid of spatula. Set aside 3–4 tablespoons of the cooking liquid (see Tips). Discard remaining cooking liquid.
3. Place butter, cooked carrots and 3 tablespoons of the reserved cooking liquid into mixing bowl, then blend 20 sec/speed 8 or until texture is suitable for your baby, adding extra cooking liquid if necessary.
4. Serve warm or cooled. Check temperature is correct before serving. TIPS You can replace cooking liquid in step 3 with baby's milk, if desired. Purée will last for up to 3 days in an airtight container in the fridge. Freeze any leftover purée in our Freezer Pods from TheMix Shop or in airtight containers of choice for up to 3 months.
Louise mentioned you can replace cooking liquid in step 3 with baby's milk, if desired!
And Louise explained a baby's need for protein radically increases at 6 months of age therefore once they are comfortable with the simple carrot puree it's important to start introducing protein filled puree too.
"Choose pasture-raised, organic options where possible, remembering you’re not using that much in each puree – so a little can go a long way," she said.
CHICKEN AND VEGETABLE PURÉE
ACTIVE TIME 10 min | TOTAL TIME 25 min | RECIPE MAKES 775 g
¼ onion, peeled and cut into pieces (2 cm)
½ carrot, peeled if preferred and cut into pieces (2 cm)
250 g sweet potato, peeled and cut into pieces (2 cm)
90 g pear, peeled if preferred, cored and cut into pieces (2 cm – see Tips) 200 g water
60 g zucchini, cut into pieces (2 cm)
Recipe by Louise Keats
1. Place onion, carrot, sweet potato and pear into mixing bowl, then chop 5 sec/speed. Scrape down sides of mixing bowl with spatula
2. Add water, stock paste and chicken, then cook 12 min/90°C/speed 1 or until chicken is cooked.
3. Add zucchini and cook 2 min/90°C/speed 1. Scrape down sides of mixing bowl with spatula, then blend 30 sec/speed 9 or until suitable texture for your baby. Check temperature is correct before serving.
Louise added as baby starts to grow in confidence with solids steaming some veggies for them as finger food is a great start to baby led weaning,
“With Thermomix and steaming in the Varoma, you’re retaining vital nutrients and you’re also in complete control in terms of the softness," she said.
STEAMED BROCCOLI AND ZUCCHINI
ACTIVE TIME 5 min | TOTAL TIME 15 min | RECIPE MAKES 180 g
500 g water
100 g broccoli florets, halved if large
100 g zucchini, cut into batons (5 × 2 cm)
1. Place water into mixing bowl. Place Varoma dish into position, then weigh broccoli florets into it. Insert Varoma tray and weigh zucchini onto it. Secure Varoma lid and steam 10 min/Varoma/speed 1 or until texture is suitable for your baby
2. Serve as a side to a meal or as 'dunkers' with a soup, purée, spread or dip.
"Thermomix will save you so much time and expense when it comes to preparing nourishing homemade meals for you and your children,” Louise said.
"Your family will never outgrow your TM6. Even though my children are older now, I still use my Thermomix daily for all their snacks and our family meals,” she said.