The fairy godmother of family friendly feeding, these nutritional Annabel Karmel recipes are set to be a big hit with your baby.
Often parents only give fruit and vegetable purées to their baby in the first few months of weaning; however it is so important not to delay introducing important nutrients like iron and essential fatty acids from 6 months. Here are some delicious Annabel Karmel recipes to introduce your baby to chicken, meat and fish.
CHICKEN WITH CARROT AND APPLE
Suitable for Freezing, from 6 months, MAKES 600 ML (6 portions)
When my son was a baby, he refused to eat chicken until I combined it with apple which he loved.
• 60g leek, finely chopped
• 25g celery, chopped
• 75g chopped carrot
• 1 clove garlic
• 100g chicken cut into chunks
• 250g chopped and peeled sweet potato
• 75g chopped apple
• 250ml boiling unsalted chicken stock or water
• A sprig of thyme
Heat the oil in a saucepan and sauté the leek for 2 minutes.
Add the celery and carrot and cook for 5 minutes.
Add a small clove of crushed garlic and sauté for one minute.
Stir in the chopped chicken and sauté for 2 to 3 minutes or until the chicken is sealed.
Add the chopped sweet potato and the apple, pour over the chicken stock or boiling water and add the sprig of thyme.
Cover and cook over a low heat for 20 minutes.
Remove the sprig of thyme and blitz to a purée.
BEEF AND CARROT CASSEROLE
From 7 months, MAKES 5 PORTIONS, Suitable for freezing
Iron deficiency is the commonest nutritional deficiency in babies and toddlers. The iron a baby inherits from his mother runs out at 6 months and so it is important to make sure that your baby has an iron rich diet. Red meat provides the richest source of iron and here’s a tasty beef purée that is popular with babies.
• 200g minced beef (lean)
• 1 onion, finely chopped
• 2 small carrots, roughly chopped
• 1 stick of celery, finely diced
• 1 tbsp plain flour
• 50ml apple juice
• 200ml unsalted beef stock
• 100ml passata
• 1 tsp tomato purée
• Half tsp dried thyme
• Dash of Worcestershire sauce (optional)
• 10g parmesan cheese, grated
Heat a saucepan and brown the beef, then add the onion, carrots and celery.
Fry over the heat for 3 to 4 minutes until lightly browned.
Sprinkle over the flour.
Blend in the apple juice, stock and passata.
Bring up to the boil, then add the tomato purée and thyme.
Cover with a lid and gently simmer for 30 minutes until tender.
Add the Worcestershire sauce and parmesan cheese.
Blend to a purée for young babies.
PASTA SHELLS WITH BUTTERNUT SQUASH AND TOMATO SAUCE
Suitable from 8 months, Suitable for Freezing, MAKES 2 PORTIONS
This fresh tomato sauce is very tasty and because it has butternut squash and cheese blended into it, it is more nutritious than an ordinary tomato sauce.
• 150g butternut squash, peeled and chopped
• 2 tbsp mini shell pasta
• 3 medium tomatoes, skinned, deseeded and chopped
• 15g butter
• 30g Cheddar cheese, grated
Steam the butternut squash for 10 minutes or until tender.
Cook the pasta according to the packet instructions. Meanwhile, skin the tomatoes.
Cut a cross in the base of the tomatoes using a sharp knife. Put them in a bowl and cover with boiling water. Leave for one minute. Drain and rinse in cold water. The skin should peel off easily. Cut the tomatoes into quarters and deseed.
Melt the butter in a small saucepan and sauté until mushy. Stir in the cheese until melted.
Blend the butternut squash with the tomato and cheese sauce. Drain the pasta and stir into the sauce.
MAKES 5 PORTIONS (500ml), Suitable from 6 months, Suitable for freezing
You might not have thought of giving your baby lentils but some of my most popular baby recipes are lentil purées. Lentils are a good source of protein, iron and fibre. They are good for all babies and especially good to include in your baby’s diet if you are a vegetarian.
• 1 tbsp sunflower oil
• 50g onion, finely chopped
• 2 medium carrots, chopped (100g)
• 2 tbsp celery, chopped
• 50g split red lentils, rinsed
• 1 medium (225g) sweet potato peeled and chopped
• 300ml unsalted vegetable stock or water
• 30g grated Cheddar
Sauté the onion, carrot and celery in the oil for about 5 minutes or until softened.
Add the lentils and sauté for one minute. Stir in the sweet potato and pour over the stock or water.
Bring to the boil, turn down the heat and simmer covered for about 20 minutes.
Purée in a blender and stir in the grated cheese until melted.
POACHED SALMON WITH SWEET POTATO AND PEAS
MAKES 3 PORTIONS, Suitable from 6 months, Suitable for freezing, Prep time 8 minutes, Cooking time 12 minutes
Its hard to find a jar of baby purée that contains oily fish like salmon, yet the essential fatty acids in oily fish are particularly important for the development of your baby’s brain or nervous system and vision. Fats like these are a major component of the brain – for this reason 50% of the calories in breast milk are composed of fat.
• 150ml vegetable stock or water
• 125g sweet potato, peeled and chopped
• 100g salmon fillet, skinned, cut into 1 cm cubes
• 2 tbsp frozen peas
• 40g mature Cheddar cheese, grated
Put the stock or water in a saucepan with the sweet potato. Bring to the boil, then cook over a medium heat for 7 to 8 minutes or until the sweet potato is just tender.
Add the salmon and peas, cover again and simmer for 3 to 4 minutes until the fish flakes easily and the vegetables are tender.
Remove from the heat and stir in the grated cheese. Blend to a purée for young babies or mash for older babies.
Cool as quickly as possible, then cover and chill. This can be frozen in individual portions; thaw overnight in the fridge, then reheat until piping hot. Stir and allow to cool slightly before serving.