Monday, September 13, 2010

Baby Food Week: Oatmeal

After a few weeks of trying out various methods and techniques in baby food, I'm ready to share. I'm going to share a new "recipe" every day this week. Keep in mind that I've only experimented with fruits and veggies. I haven't done any combos or added any seasonings yet, that will come when Kenzie is about 8 months old. For now, all of the food is simply pureed fruit, vegetable or grain.

I got most of my recipes from however I've added my own tips and tricks, which I found by experimenting with various methods.

Today's recipe is oatmeal. Typically oatmeal is one of the next foods introduced after rice cereal. Makenzie absolutely loves steel cut oats and I feel good about giving them to her because they provide more nutrients than rice cereal. See the breakdown on the Wholesome Baby Foods website.

Making the oats is super easy. The only problem is in the storage. Let's first look at making them and then we can talk about storage.

Start with a bag of steel cut oats.

Meausure out 1 cup and pour into a blender or food processor.

Blend the oats until they become a fine powder.

In a small saucepan, boil 1 cup of water.

Measure out 1/4 cup of steel cut oat powder. SLOWLY pour in the oat powder while you quickly whisk into the water. The key is to do this slowly while whisking quickly otherwise you end up with clumpy cereal.

Simmer for about 10 minutes, constantly stirring.

Fresh oats are the best to serve. The consistency is perfect, however taking 10 minutes a day to make your baby's breakfast (or lunch or dinner) may not be realistic so here's what I've found works best for storing.

Freezing and defrosting leaves the oatmeal a little rubbery. Makenzie goes through oats quickly so I don't worry about freezing them. If you do want to make enough to freeze I would try not cooking off all of the water and freezing that way. I think it will help the texture to not be so rubbery. Refrigerating does still leave the oatmeal with a less than desireable texture but there are a few ways to fix this.

Makenzie's favorite way to fix this is to warm the oats in the microwave and then add your baby's favorite fruit puree. Makenzie's favorite meal so far is steel cut oats with pears. I can't spoon them out fast enough.

Another way to go is to warm up the oats in the microwave and add either breastmilk, formula or water to them. CAUTION: a little liquid goes a long way. Pour a very little bit in at a time and whisk it together thoroughly before adding more liquid.

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