Annabel Karmel’s Weaning Recipes

hen it comes to weaning your little one, it is very important to introduce different proteins from 6 months. Babies need a different diet to an adult which should be low in fat and high in fibre. Giving a baby a fruit and vegetable-only diet does not contain enough calories and has too much fibre. They need additional important nutrients such as iron and essential fatty acids to aid development. So why not try out these recipes for your baby to enjoy!

Salmon and Broccoli Puree

6 To 9 Months • Makes 4 Portions

Two Superfoods in one puree. Broccoli is a superfood in more ways than one. It provides iron and calcium both of which are vital to healthy infant development.
What’s more, the iron it contains is easily absorbed by your baby thanks to broccoli’s high vitamin C content. This is because vitamin C helps the body absorb calcium and iron effectively.

• 15g butter
• 50g onion, diced
• 50g leek, diced
• 175g carrot, diced
• 150g potato, peeled and diced
• 250ml milk
• 100ml water
• 60g broccoli florets
• 120g salmon fillet cut into chunks
• 40g parmesan, grated

Melt the butter in a saucepan. Add the onion, leek and carrot. Gently sauté for 8 minutes.
Add the potato, then pour over the milk and water.
Bring to the boil and then cook over a medium heat for 10 minutes. Add the broccoli florets and salmon and continue to cook for 5 minutes or until the broccoli is just tender.
Stir in the parmesan until melted.
Blend to a puree for young babies using a handheld electric blender or mash for older babies.

Mini Fish Pie

Makes 3 Portions

• 375g potatoes, peeled and diced
• 1 1/2 tbsp milk
• 40g butter
• a little salt and pepper (for babies over one)
• 15g butter
• 25g onion, peeled and finely chopped
• 1 tbsp flour
• 125g cod fillet, skinned and cubed
• 125g salmon fillet, skinned and cubed
• 1 bay leaf
• 75ml milk
• 50ml vegetable stock
• 25g frozen peas
• 50g Cheddar cheese, grated
• 1 lightly beaten egg

Preheat the oven to 180ºC/350ºF. Bring a pan of lightly salted water to the boil, add the potatoes, reduce the heat and cook for 15 to 20 minutes or until tender. Drain the potatoes and mash together with the milk and half butter until smooth and season to taste for babies over one.
Melt the remaining butter in a saucepan, add the onion and sauté until softened. Add the flour and cook for 30 seconds, stirring. Gradually stir in the milk and then the stock. Bring to the boil and cook for one minute. Add the fish with the parsley and bay leaf. Simmer for about 3 minutes and then stir in the peas and cook for one minute. Remove the bay leaf and stir in the cheese until melted. Season with a little salt and pepper.
Divide the fish between 3 ramekin dishes and top with the mashed potato. Brush with the lightly beaten egg. Heat through in an oven preheated to 180ºC for about 15 minutes and finish off for a few minutes under a preheated grill until golden.

Popeye Pasta

Makes 4 portions

• 100g frozen or 225g fresh spinach, washed
• 40g Annabel Karmel small pasta shells
• 15g butter
• 2 tbsp milk
• 2 tbsp cream cheese
• 20g grated Gruyere cheese
• 20g grated Cheddar Cheese

Cook the spinach according to the packet instructions or, if fresh, with just the water clinging to its leaves in a microwave or in a saucepan over a low heat until tender. Press out the excess water. Cook the pasta according to packet instructions.
Meanwhile, melt the butter in a small frying pan and sauté the cooked spinach, combine the spinach with the milk and cheeses, and chop finely in a food processor.
Mix with the cooked pasta.

Beef Casserole With Six Vegetables

Suitable For Freezing • Makes 4 Portions

A baby’s store of inherited iron runs out after six months. Red meat is the best source of iron, but it can also be found in pulses such as lentils and green leafy vegetables such as spinach. The best way to introduce meat is to combine it with lots of root vegetables and cook it slowly so that it’s nice and tender, as babies often don’t like eating red meat because of the texture. Slow cooking red meat makes it lovely and tender and also intensifies the flavour. This delicious casserole doesn’t just have to be for little ones, make a big batch and leave some un-puréed for the rest of the family or even for friends coming over for supper!

• 1 tbsp olive oil
• 1 onion, chopped
• 60g celery, chopped
• 100g carrot, diced
• 2 tsp fresh thyme
• 120g slow cooking beef, eg: skirt or braising steak cut into chunks
• 1 clove garlic, crushed
• 40g parsnip, diced
• 300g sweet potatoes, peeled and diced
• 1 medium potato
• 500ml unsalted beef stock
• 2 tsp tomato puree
• 2 ready-to-eat chopped prunes or dried apricots

Heat the oil in a saucepan. Add the onion, celery and carrot and gently sauté for 8 minutes. Add the thyme, beef and garlic and fry for one minute, then add the parsnip, sweet potato and potato. Add the stock, tomato puree and prunes. Bring to the boil, then lower the heat, cover and simmer for about 1 hour 10 minutes or until tender.

Home Made Strawberry Jelly

Makes 4 Glasses

It’s easy to make your own delicious jelly using fruit juice, leaf gelatine and fresh berries. Use fun-shaped moulds or have them in little ramekins that can be easily taken out of the fridge when needed.

• 150ml Strawberry Ribena cordial (or similar strawberry flavoured cordial)
• 200ml clear apple juice
• 4 to 5 leaves gelatine
• 150ml water
• 75g raspberries
• 75g fresh strawberries, quartered
• Blueberries

Measure the strawberry cordial, apple juice and water into a saucepan and heat gently until hand hot. Set aside.
Put the gelatine into a bowl of cold water. Leave to soak for about 5 minutes, then squeeze out the liquid and add to the warm strawberry mixture. Stir until dissolved. Leave to cool.
Divide the fruits between the glasses. Pour over the jelly, transfer to the fridge and leave to set for about 6 hours or overnight if possible.