I’m still learning a lot about this whole raising a child thing, and one realisation from the past week is that our children are capable of a lot more than I had previously thought.
The first area which I had underestimated Zoe in is food. Up until last week, I had been giving Zoe blended/mashed vegetables and meat for her meals. But after talking to a friend and finding out that she gives her baby whole pieces of pasta, chopped up grapes and so on, I thought it was high time to try all this out. I started by making Zoe an amazingly delicious pasta sauce, (yes, that was self-praise, but it’s really something that I’d eat myself. Recipe to come…) and I cut up pieces of adult pasta into it. Zoe ate it all up without choking or gagging, and I was amazed. I cut up a blueberry into small pieces and gave that to her, and she didn’t have any difficult swallowing it (I had always been worried about the skin). Then last Saturday, when we were at our friend’s house having brunch, she reached out for my strawberry and I let her hold it. The next thing I knew, she was trying to take a bite of it. So I bit off the top and gave it to her. She proceeded to take bites of it and managed to chew and swallow, and after awhile, she had eaten her first strawberry. I was so excited by this that I gave her another 2-3 strawberries later in the afternoon and turns out, she’s allergic to large quantities of strawberries. Oops.
The next lot of incidents happened today. We were at a hotel having lunch with a friend, and Zoe was sitting in her own chair. At some point, she looked at me and made what we call her complaining noise, and screwed up her face a little. I didn’t get the message the first time. She did it again, and then did her ‘I’m pushing out a poo’ face. I quickly brought her to the restroom, sat her on the toilet seat, and she took her first dump in a public toilet. Later on, back at the table, she looked at me, frowned and made more noises. I inferred that she was tired as it was about her nap time. I put her down in her stroller and she was asleep in 5 minutes. Back home, when I tried to put her down for a nap, she wouldn’t go to sleep, so I got her out of the cot and sat her on the bed to play with some toys. She kept looking at me and tried to tell me something, but unfortunately, I don’t understand her words right now. After a few rounds of not getting her message, I carried her up and realised she had done a poo! No wonder she couldn’t fall asleep!
What amazed me from today is that in all 3 instances, Zoe looked at me and tried to tell me exactly what she needed. She may not be able to express herself in words that I understand right now, but I’m realising that I need to take her requests seriously and try and figure out what she’s telling me. Our little humans really are smart little cookies who can communicate with us in their own way.
And now, for the pasta sauce recipe. I don’t measure things by the way, but this is what’s in it. Vary the proportions according to taste.
Pasta Sauce Ingredients
- Carrot purée & roasted red capsicum purée as the base
- Chicken or beef stock (or veggie if you’re vegetarian)
- Finely chopped broccoli
- Finely chopped beans
- Pinch of salt
- Pinch of oregano
Sauté the onions in a small portion of olive oil on low heat. When the onions are almost done, add in the garlic. When ready, put in the broccoli and beans and sauté for a couple of minutes. Put in carrot, red capsicum purée and chicken stock. Add salt and oregano, and boil for 10-15 mins. And voila! You’re done!
The chicken stock is optional, I just put it in to loosen up the sauce. You could use water too but it won’t be so tasty.
You could probably also add in some minced meat. I usually add in some chicken breast meat that’s been blended, but I do this just for the day’s portion. The rest goes into the freezer. 🙂
You could also add in all sorts of different veggies like eggplant, carrot cubes, zucchini, and try putting in some mushrooms! I haven’t tried that yet but will probably do so next time round.
Bon appetite! 🙂