"Gypsy gold does not chink and glitter. It gleams in the sun and neighs in the dark."

~ Saying of the Gladdagh Gypsies of Galway

Tuesday, November 8, 2011

Baby Food: Carrots

Ah - the carrot.
The vegetable that beta-carotene was named after!
 Did your mother ever tell you to eat them so you can see better?

No vegetable even comes close to comparing with a carrot when it comes to beta-carotene.
A study from Harvard University suggests that people who eat at least 5 carrots a week are less likely to suffer a stroke than those who eat one carrot a month. I found that fact interesting.

So, as you see above, I peeled the carrots. Normally, when I throw them in stews, pot roast etc, I do not. And if I buy them from a farmers market or pull them out of our own garden, I do not. However, these were from the store - I can't tell you why, but I felt I needed to peel off that outer layer. I digress - do what your gut tells you too. And have you ever had a fresh carrot from the garden? I never believed it until I tried it myself, but they really are so much more sweet and tasty than one from the store.

Anyways, what I was trying to get at was, since these are a root vegetable, I chose to roast them. Because everyone knows roasted root veggies rock! I coated them with some olive oil and baked them at 375 degrees F for probably 70-90 minutes depending on the size of the chunk! I could have done 400 degrees (and it would have took less time), I am sure, but I don't particularly care for the oven being that hot if I can avoid it. I know, I'm weird!

Coat these carrot chunks in olive oil - YES! - olive oil. Saturated fats are good for you. And they are good for your baby too. Coconut oil would probably be good too. Margarine or vegetable oil, umm, not so much [gag]!

After these roasted, they took a spin in the food processor. They were a 'rough puree'. If I had steamed them, I think they would have been more of a smooth puree, but since my little guy is almost 8 months now, a little more rough is better. He is learning textures. He screams when I take away a piece of steak that I let him naw on - but we'll save that story for later!

You may notice some little black specks. I say that is ok. Those specks are roasted goodness from the carrots. I also added some [homemade] chicken broth to the carrot puree for good measure ;)

Give these a try for your little one. And for sure, if you can grow them yourself or purchase some fresh from a farmers market, I highly recommend it!

Alternate Prep Method:
Peel the outter layer, then dice. Steam for about 20 minutes or until tender and pierced easily with a fork. Puree in foor processor with 1 tbsp of softened butter. If you baby is exiting the 'pure, puree' stage, you can still use the food processor, just hit the grind button a few times to leave them lumpy for more of a texture.


Susan said...

I can vouch for the sweetness of a carrot pulled from your own garden. I don't think people realize the difference when they're buying them in the market. We're lucky to have farmer's markets here, but unfortunately, this time of year the carrots are coming from warmer climates.
I agree, olive oil is good for baby too and to get a smoother puree, you could have added some of your homemade chicken stock (I'd use homemade vegetable). I bet your little guy woofed these down, they look so good.

Unknown said...

I can't wait to start making baby food!