I just finished the book called French Kids Eat Everything by Karen Le Billion and was struck with how many of the french rules about educating your child on food and eating resonated with me. The original reason I started reading the book was because instead of eating her dinner, little E would just throw handfuls of food, her plate, spoon and sippy cup at us, well mostly at my husband. This behavior needed to stop so I needed to do some research on how I wanted to approach this situation. After reading this book and putting some of the french rules into place, this problem stopped the very next day. But we will go more into depth about this at a later time because there is just so much that I loved about this book and want to share with you.
Instead, I want to talk about one of the things that surprised me in the book, how French parents do their purees. They start will only vegetables that are pureed and thinned down to an almost milk like consistency. That is not the surprising part, the surprising part is that they use many vegetables that you are not likely to find as a baby puree on any grocery market shelves or vegetables that I would have ever thought of making into a baby puree - red peppers, leeks, zucchini, asparagus, brussels sprouts fennel and celery root [which I wasn't even sure what this was]. Some are mixed with a little bit of potato to thicken them up, but most are served by themselves. They also categorize the purees into purees that have a mild taste and purees that that have a stronger taste. Leeks, zucchini, potatoes celery root, potatoes are all vegetables with a mild taste. Red peppers, peas, carrots, fennel and broccoli are all vegetables with a strong taste. Their theory is that you start with the mild vegetable purees first and then move onto the strong tasting purees building the thickness as you go.
Reading this book made me change my prospective on how many vegetables you can really give your baby from the very beginning. I am not sure why my view was so limited on this. It makes sense that if you want your child to learn to love all of their vegetables, you have to start them all from the very beginning. Plus all vegetables are filled with tons of nutrients that your baby needs in order to grow. Why limit their vegetable intake to only peas and carrots. Let's widen our horizons on the selection of vegetables we get at the market and make into purees. Let's widen our view on what vegetables we want our kiddos to love. Let's do it together.
So I started with a simple puree of zucchini with a little potato. I left the skin on the zucchini because that is where most of the nutrients are found and steamed them both for less then 20 minutes and what I made was a simple, mild puree that was silky and smooth and beyond satisfying to not only my babes pallet but also to mine. You could add a little cream or olive oil and serve this warmed as a starter soup for your entire family. Yes, it was that good.
Zucchini + Potato Puree
3 small organic Zucchini
1 small organic Potato
Wash zucchini and potato. Cut potato into small pieces and place in steam basket for 10 minutes. Chop off top of zucchini and the rest into small pieces. Add to steam basket for another 7 minutes. Let cool slightly and puree in blender or food processor until smooth.
Will last 4 days in fridge or 2 months in freezer.