Preparing baby food at home: Pumpkin Pasta for Crawlers

I was giving my son only dal rice with vegetable or rice and lentils or vegetable/fruit mash till I found a popular brand’s baby food products like ravioli and mac and cheese(Oh yeah) for crawlers.I checked out the consistency and I decided to make it at home. After all, Indian babies grow up with rice and lentils(paruppu sadam), Italian Mom’s would probably give pasta and Greek babies must have had a taste of pita bread as they start solids.

Besides, both the texture and taste is something new for the baby.At crawler stage, around 8 months, my little one wanted to try different things and there were days when he got bored of his usual food. Pasta, especially penne pasta, chopped in to tiny pieces(bite size that babies can chew) also helped us to make him pick and eat his food using his hands. When we eat dinner at the table, we also keep him next to us these days and give him little bites of what we eat so that he will get that taste. We usually place some well cooked, well chopped penne(as rings) in his tray table and my lil one will play with it for sometime and then try to pick it and put it in his mouth.

I double check these days before I write about what I cook for lil R.When people force me into accepting their ideas on bring up a baby- I wish I could say, yes, may be you knew what to do for your child and I know what is best for mine :D.So, if you like this idea of trying new foods, go for it!

This is how I started making pasta for lil R.

Penne pasta with squash and pumpkins:

Ingredients:

Well cooked penne pasta- 6 pieces
Yellow squash/acron squash- 1″ cube
Yellow pumpkin- 1″ cube
Salt- to taste (a pinch is enough)

Method:
When I make pasta for us, I keep aside 6-7 pieces of penne and recook it in the same water till it is cooked through(not adente)

Since I keep rice in pressure cooker everyday, it is easy for me to cook both the 1″ cubes of squash and pumpkin in a separate bowl in the cooker itself. Then I mash it with a spoon till it is smooth. You can also steam and mash the veggies if you have a steamer/microwave.

Then you can try pasta in two ways:
1) Chop the penne in to fine rings. Add about 2 tbsp of water to the mashed vegetables, add salt and chopped pasta, stir well,check for temperature(not too hot)- and feed the baby(if they have teeth-after 9 months).

2) If you are worried that your baby may still choke on the finer pieces of pasta, blend the cooked penne and vegetables in the blender to a coarse paste, add salt to taste and serve as a pasta mash to the baby for starters, then slowly introduce them to newer textures by giving chopped pasta pieces. There is no point in giving mashed baby food to babies who can chew and have teeth. This is excellent finger food for babies and a fun way to help them master picking and holding techniques.

Always check the temperature before feeing any kind of food to the baby so that it is not too hot.

When I started making pasta, I made pumpkin flavored pasta, like how we have pasta in tomato sauce or pesto. Now that he likes the taste of pasta, I make spinach mash with pasta, mashed carrots with pasta, mashed sweet potatoes with pasta, yellow squash with pasta and so on. The options we have when we make baby food at home is endless, and it is fresh, compared to the processed food options sold in stores.

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5 Comments to “Preparing baby food at home: Pumpkin Pasta for Crawlers”

  1. Cham says:

    I never gave pasta cooked at home, of course my son ate all the variety available in popular brand! and the parrupu sadam too.
    But making at home is always a great idea!

  2. sayantani says:

    thats really good. my kid never liked those bottled foods and i always had to prepare it fresh for him. you are a good mom Ruchika.

  3. Priya says:

    Never cooked pasta with pumpkin, looks wonderful sis..My son will definitely love it,will give a try soon.

  4. Sonia says:

    For Mac and Cheese you can try a little bit with putting in some Indian spices. That way they dont feel the difference in food when they go to school later. The same with pizza. Obviously this is a little later.. How old is your son now ?

  5. Ya, pumpkins in pasta is new to me also. This must be tasty and sure to be liked by kids.

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