I don’t always have energy to cook full, fresh meals. Often, I just make a new grain or soup and add it to the mix of leftovers available. One thing I do prioritize is having a fresh vegetable dish at every meal. This can get tricky when I am feeding adults, a four-year old and a baby. Sometimes we all have different needs.
Babies don’t do as well with the lightly cooked vegetables that most adults and children need. They need their food to be softer, especially when learning to feed themselves. We need the light, fresh quality and crunch that shorter cooked vegetables provide. If we consume overcooked, or leftover vegetables regularly it can create sweet cravings and a heavy feeling energetically.
So what are some of the ways I provide fresh vegetables for babies instead of just reaching for a jar? Sometimes I will steam or blanch vegetables, remove most of them when lightly cooked and let some cook longer for the baby. If they are soft enough, they will mash easily with a fork or babies can feed themselves. Other times I just puree some of the lightly cooked vegetables in a mini grinder.
Lately, I have been skipping both steps and just mincing his vegetables and feeding them to him with a spoon. Just cut the vegetable in either thin strips (if leaves) or thin matchsticks. Then line them all up and cut the thin strips into tiny/miniscule pieces depending on your baby. Doing this allows me to cook the vegetables the way I want and still have some for baby. Plus, it gives him some vegetables that haven’t been so overcooked. I often bring the cutting board and knife to the table and just mince vegetables as he needs them. This saves me time, energy and extra dishes to clean.
Some vegetables he especially likes prepared minced:
Collard Greens and Broccoli
sautéed Kale and Nappa Cabbage