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The Essence of Vegetables

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As a new mom and a cook, I made a commitment to cook my own baby food. My son Luca has only eaten one jar of (organic) baby food—and that’s because I ran out of apples and needed to feed him before going out to the store.

So far, I’ve made apples, pears, bananas, peas, carrots, and sweet potatoes for him. The “recipe” is very simple and always the same (except for bananas, which I don’t cook): I steam the fruits or veggies (separately) to keep the nutrients intact, then I purée them, let cool a bit, and freeze the purée in ice-cube trays for easy portioning. That’s it. No salt, no pepper, no olive oil, no spices.

I thought the purées would taste bland without any seasoning, but to my surprise they’re anything but. Every time I finish making one, I find myself scraping the bowl of the food processor and licking the spoon—and not just the fruit purées, which are inherently sweet. The veggies, too! It’s amazing how good they are. It’s like tasting the pure, unadulterated essence of each vegetable. No frills, no fuss.

So, while I won’t be serving baby food at my next dinner party, I’m glad my baby is eating food that’s actually good—not just good for him.



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  • pattypop | 02/14/2009

    Just thinking that veggie purees like these might be quite wonderful for "creamed" soups for adults as well. They would add flavor and body to most veggie or meat based soups! I saute mushrooms and onions until very soft, puree, then freeze in small amounts. You can add whatever herbs you want to the puree, or garlic when you saute.

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