Monday, March 23, 2015

Home Cookin' For The Baby

I love cooking. I find it to be relaxing and a good stress-reliever. I also find that it can be quite therapeutic. A few weeks ago, I pureed some bananas for JB along with some zucchini. She hasn't had the zucchini yet (I honestly keep forgetting about it), but loves the bananas. We have been buying Nature's Best Organic baby food because I wanted to make sure it contained the least amount of ingredients possible. I don't mind purchasing the baby food, but I decided that since I have the time on the weekends, that I would start building up a nice stash in our freezer. We only have a few jars left of baby food and honestly, I can't wait until they are gone. They take up too much space in our pantry and I'm so afraid I'm going to knock a jar over and it's going to crack open all over our floor.

So, on Saturday morning, I got a list going of all the baby food I wanted to make - everything I made was something that she has had before, but the jar-version of it. On my list were carrots, peas, bananas, pears, and sweet potatoes.  

I bought a bag of the Greenwise frozen organic peas from Publix. I boiled some water, tossed the frozen peas into the steaming basket, and let them do their thing. Easy-peasy! Once they were done, I tossed the water and threw them into the blender. I added a little bit of water, hit puree and voila! Pea puree for our little one! One 10-oz bag of frozen peas made 6-once ounce cubes along with 4-once ounce cubes that I also added carrot puree to. We didn't have a second ice cube tray and there was a little bit of the carrot-pea puree mixture left (4 ounces) so I just stuck it the fridge for her dinner over the weekend.

 As far as the carrots, I bought Greenwise organic carrots (the small bag) and washed, peeled, and sliced. I steamed them just like I did the peas. It made the exact same amount as the peas. 

Sunday morning, I woke up with baby food on my mind again! I grabbed a bunch of bananas, peeled and sliced them, and tossed them into the blender. 7 bananas makes a lot of baby food! We got 16 one-ounce cubes, plus 6 2-oz containers. So that's 28 ounces of banana puree!

As I was finishing up the bananas, I washed, forked, and wrapped 4 sweet potatoes in foil. I put them into a 400-degree preheated oven for 75 minutes. Boy did it make the house smell good! Once they were done, I peeled off the skin, tossed them into the blender, and hit puree! I added about 10 ounces of water as well to make sure it was the right consistency. We now have sweet potatoes for days! LOL! It made about 28 ounces (16 1-ounce cubes and then 6 2-ounce containers. 

Finally I made pear puree. I bought two bartlett pears and two bosc pears. I washed them and then peeled, cored, and chopped them. I steamed them just like I did the peas and carrots, only it took way longer! The pears were so NOT ripe, so I ended up steaming for about 20 minutes. I kept checking but they weren't fork-tender. But that's okay since I had SUCH a messy kitchen to clean up! Once they were done, I pureed them along with about 4 ounces of water. 4 pears made about 16 ounces (6 2-oz containers).

So how does all of this add up compared to jar baby food? Well, at Publix Nature's Best is around $1.19 for a 4-oz jar. That is enough for 2 meals for JB. We could probably give her more than 2 ounces, but that's something we'll start next weekend when she turns 7 months!!! Here's the breakdown! Jarred food is .30 an ounce...

$1.06 (1.53 lbs) - made 28 ounces = .03 an ounce! Yes!
Sweet Potatoes
$2.86 (2.22 lbs) - made 28 ounces = .10 an ounce! 
$3.48 (1.98 lbs) - made 16 ounces = .22 an ounce!
$2.39 (10 ounce bag) - made 12 ounces = .20 an ounce!
$1.29 (small bag) - made 12 ounces = .11 an ounce! 

96 ounces were made for the total cost of $11.08! Now that's what I call amazing!!!
So needless to say, our freezer is stocked with baby food now! Next weekend I'll be making blueberries, spinach, and maybe I'll try avocado again. I haven't had much luck with avocado - I'm not experienced with preparing it so I've struck out a few times!    post signature

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