Thursday, 13 August 2009

Baby food cook book

Today is a birthday of a special friend of mine. This will be her last birthday she spend as a couple, because next year it would be three of them!

I was browsing for a birthday cake to be pasted on my blog and saw my son old picture. This picture was taken on his 1st birthday at home, just the three of us. Can't imagine this December he turned 3! Where all those 2 years gone?
My 1st birthday cake
And I remember that's probably the first chocolate cake he had. Okay, we spread it over a week, so practically chocolate cake for breakfast and desert. Suddenly it occur to me of the best baby food advice I ever need. Eversince my son starts on solid, he had never eat something out of baby cook book, for a simple reason :

It’s funny how you can buy those exquisite cookbooks for baby food, featuring
beautifully photographed pureed avocado, as if it came straight from a chef’s

Then you can spend hours peeling, cutting, steaming, pureeing,
food for your baby – then have it spat out onto the floor.

And how you can experiment with every recipe in the book – tuna patties, corn fritters, slow cooked lamb ragout, cheese pinwheels – but all your kid wants to eat is frozen bread.

-Karen Cheng-

I think Karen word this very well! (It's just been written today, you can read her full entry here) The idealistic part of me purchased a 14 GBP worth of baby cook book, which end up no where else but charity shop. If you only have 2 hands (and probably more than one kid) with no one else to help you (a mother, an in law, a butler, a nanny and few servants), somethings can be very impractical to do. It's good to cook food for your baby, but what's healthy does not need to be taxing. In fact there is a lot of way to make a quick and healthy baby food.
I used to mash bananas (take about 10 minutes), cook strawberry flavourer rice milk (take about 5 minutes), or mash potatoes and peas (take about 5 minutes if you use instant mash, just add hot water/milk). As soon as he had more than 4 teeth, my son eat our dinner leftovers without being mashed.

Just when you think healthy food will bring you a healthy life, let me tell you that even non-genetically-modified-organic food won't guarantee you to live a life longer or less likely to fall sick. Read here, a story about a girl who died on neuroblastoma (a form of cancer) while her mom serving the family the best healthy food I can think of.

Our life would never be the same. I want to say that I was the most stunned. You
see, I was an avid organic vegetable gardener, I never used pesticides in or
around our home, I served as much organic food to my family as possible, I read
labels, I breast fed Kaitlyn for 12 months.
She never received any pre-made
formula, I recycled, and I conserved energy before it was the thing to do. I did
these things to keep my families immunities strong for illnesses like the common

Cancer never, ever crossed my mind. How in the world could a child of mine
get CANCER? In my ignorance I thought only drug-addicts children got cancer or
children that parents smoked cigarettes or children that lived near those huge
power lines. In my mind cancer was caused by activities in our environment, and
my activities did not include any of these things. My whole life at this point
was a sham.

-Kaitlyn's Mother-

Of course, it's great if you have time time and money to afford healiter food, but just like an insurance, it will cost you something with no absolute return.

Don't judge me wrong that I don't encourage healthy diet. I encourage my family to eat fruits and vegetables 5 portion a day. However, there is a limit to everything. I limit my cooking/preparing time to 30 minutes. I tried to buy organic fruits/veg that have edible skin like grapes, tomatoes, apples, and brocolli. I limit my groceries to 30 GBP a week, which mean I can't use the best or healtiest quality. And if you ask me for a trade, I rather spend 30 GBP on normal grocery and 10 GBP for family swimming session than spending 40 GBP on nutrition-balanced-free-preservative-no-additive-fair-trade grocery.

I think this will be a good advice and a reality check for new mothers. I know that as a new mother all we want is the best for our child. However it's very hard to pin down your idealistic "out of the book" idea on a child life. And more importantly, not all books, internet articles, even scientist publication are truthful and might be dangrous to gullible mind. In a matter of fact, loads of people survived a still become a good parent without reading such thing. What a child need is very simple. He will appreciate love, affection and attention more than anything, including a chef-look-alike food.

So please, spend less time in the kitchen (and in front of computer!) and more time with them.


This entry is specially dedicated to the birthday girl, who'll be a mother in about weeks time. Happy birthday!


betchai said...

i agree with you JH, we eat healthy too (mostly vegetables and fruits), but only when it is within our practical belt, i so agree with your choice.

Ayie said...

i love his expression! he's adorable!

AG said...

Jejeh makasiiihhhh... *hugssss* :D
well, for sure the food stuff, is entirely true.. liat aja perut orang indo yang makannya penuh msg, kotor, pake borax buat tahu goreng, dsb dsb... jauuuhhh lebih kuat dari orang2 yang perutnya diisi makanan sehat mulu... hihihihi... healthy food is truly encouraged, but it is not a must for sure :p

Stardust said...

There's a lot of truth with that babe!

J.H said...

I hope this post will encourage some new mothers who struggle with providing the best for their baby. You are doing just great!