Thursday, April 21, 2016

How To: Make and Freeze Homemade Baby Food {Pea Purée}

When introducing green vegetables into your baby's diet, consider starting with peas. They have a mild flavor, are an excellent source of fiber, and can help maintain a healthy digestive tract.

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It's finally starting to feel like spring here. With warmer temps and sunny skies, how could I not make more of an effort to get out the house with Caroline?

Of course, more outings mean more juggling. I'm adjusting to a new normal again. And now that I have less "free time," my to-do lists go through several revisions over the course of the day.

It's become crucial for me to reserve a little bit of energy so I can have a productive "second shift." Once Caroline is down for the night, I can do work for clients, write a new blog post, or take care of volunteer work.

Days (and nights) can be long. And there are times when it feels like I'm trying to do everything while wading through the mud.

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Am I getting better about finding balance? Yes.

Am I improving my multitasking game? You betcha.

Am I happy with the state of things? Well, I wouldn't exactly say that...

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I've learned that no decision I make is free of guilt.

When I'm focusing my attention and energy on Caroline, I feel guilty about not working. When I'm working, I feel guilty about not spending that time with Caroline. It's a vicious cycle that many parents -- not just the moms! -- know all too well.

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But I'm working on this, too.

I just have to be better at reminding myself that, right now, I'm a stay-at-home mom who also works for herself. I have priorities that demand a lot from me, all day long, so I have to go a little easier on myself.

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Case in point:

I woke up early yesterday afternoon to meet a potential client for coffee. While I was stuck in traffic, I started feeling guilty about doing something to address my needs.

Did focusing on growing my client list so I could land more work and bring in more money mean that I wasn't being a good mom?

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As fate would have it, I came across this article when I got home from my meeting. Even though it wasn't talking about my current form of "mom guilt," this particular passage hit home:

"... I’m a good mom because I agonize over whether I’m doing it right. I’m a good mom because I asked the question in the first place."

Caroline's face lights up when she sees me. She'll start babbling right away, almost as if she's filling me in on what I missed. She'll start clapping to get my attention and then giggle like crazy when I look at her.

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She's happy.

She's healthy.

So, despite the guilt, I must be doing something right.

Pea Purée
Printable Recipe

This recipe gives the measurements I use when making purée to freeze. Adjust the amounts accordingly based on your needs.

INGREDIENTS
  • 2 cups water
  • 2 16-ounce bags frozen peas

INSTRUCTIONS
  1. Bring the water to a boil in a large pot.
  2. Add the peas and return the water to a boil.
  3. Reduce the heat to low. Cover and simmer the peas for 2-3 minutes.
  4. Reserve 1 cup of cooking liquid then drain the peas and shock them in an ice bath. This stops the cooking and preserves their vibrant green color. Do this in batches, if necessary, but work as quickly as possible.
  5. Using a food processor, purée the peas until smooth, adding some of the reserved cooking liquid to achieve the desired consistency.

To freeze:

Allow the purée to cool to room temperature and spoon into clean ice cube trays. Wrap the trays in plastic wrap and place in the freezer to set overnight. Pop the cubes out of the trays and transfer them to freezer bags labeled with the date and the contents. You can keep the pea purée in the freezer for up to 3 months.

Recipe by Michelle Rittler, Taste As You Go

How To: Use Pea Purée

What if you make and/or freeze a batch of pea purée and your baby decides he/she doesn't like it anymore? If you're left with a whole lot of pea purée in your freezer, here are some ways to use it up:


Need more homemade baby food recipes? Try these:


Disclosure: This post contains affiliate product links. Clicking on the links may result in my being paid a commission based on product sales. Regardless of commission, all opinions expressed in this post are my own.

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