Chicken rice apple baby puree’

A complete meal for your baby: proteins + carbohydrates + vitamins.

I used a small chicken tight with Basmati rice, a Fujii apple and one carrot. Basil leaves to give extra flavor. Basic and gentle flavors, perfect for a very first baby meal.

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In Italy when you introduce solid foods in your baby’s diet (6 months), chicken is one of the first meat recommended by pediatricians as it is very rich in protein and iron. In addition to that it is very easy to digest. Also, the darker meat of the chicken (tights and legs) is higher in iron.

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Steaming is an amazing way to cook for your baby as it retains all the nutrients (like baking). Today I used a rice cooker with a tray on top to cook the other ingredients. In less than one hour I had all my ingredients ready all at once to prepare my baby puree’. I realized 8 baby meals that I stored in small containers and froze to use later when needed.

chicken apple rice puree ingred   liquid

How to proceed: soooo simple

- cut the chicken tight in small stripes or cubes, the peeled apple in small cubes and the peeled carrot in small pieces.

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- rinse the rice under cold water for 30 seconds, you want to remove the starchy flour on top

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- in a rice cooker place the rice at the bottom. Cover the rice with water. For the proportions follow the instructions of your rice cooker (they may vary from model to model). In my case I used 3/4 cup rice and 1 cup water.

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- fill the rice cooker upper tray with the remaining ingredients: chicken, apple, carrot and add the 2 basil leaves on top. Close the rice cooker and press the “cook” button. My rice cooker took 45 min to finish.

If your rice cooker doesn’t have the upper tray, you can cook the other ingredients all together in a steamer for 30 min and the rice separately.

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- place all the ingredients in a tall container ( I used a 4 cups measuring glass container): the rice, the chicken, the apple, the carrots and the basil and add 1 cup of liquid. Pending the age of your baby you can choose between hot water, vegetable broth, breast milk or formula milk if your baby is under 12 months, if your baby is older you can use regular milk. Mix everything for 1 minute with an immersion blender in order to obtain a smooth and creamy puree’.

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You can serve the baby food immediately, warm, or you can divide it in small containers with a lid and store them in the freezer for up to 3/4 months.


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posted on July 17, 2014

Pasta salad with tuna and fresh herbs

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Click the image to see the video recipe on YouTube

When summer arrives, pasta salads are always a big hit in my family. Easy, tasty and cold. Prime quality Italian tuna in Extra Virgin oil of olive + fresh herbs from my garden will do the magic. Sicilian capers + homemade sun-dried tomatoes + Italian sweet black olives will complete the recipe with their salty and intense taste.

If you are vegetarian you can avoid using the tuna and the recipe will still be delicious. The fresh herbs&co pesto is an incredible match for the pasta.

Let’s cook it together! You will need:

tuna summer pasta ingred

In a blender place the fresh herbs (basil, oregano, parsley, marjorane) altogether with the pitted olives, the capers, the sun-dried tomatoes and 3 Tbsp of Extra Virgin oil of olive. Mix everything in order to obtain a deep green pesto. Set it apart.

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Half fill a deep pasta pot with water and let it boil. When it is boiling add 1 Tbsp of sea salt, add the pasta. Stir and let the pasta cook. The pasta salad is wonderful if served warm as soon as you cook it or cold later. If you decide to serve it cold, just reduce the pasta cooking time of few minutes (i.e. if the cooking time on the package is 10 min, cook the pasta only for 7 min or it will get gluey once cold).

Remove 1 cup of starchy boiling water from the pot and set it apart. You might need some of this water to loose down the pasta once mixed with all the other ingredients.

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While the pasta is cooking prepare the cherry tomatoes: chop them in thin slices and remove the seeds.

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Place the tuna in a big bowl and break it in small pieces with a fork. Enjoy the pink color of the top quality tuna :-)

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Drain the pasta and add it to the tuna.

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Add the sliced cherry tomatoes and the pesto. Stir. Enjoy!

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posted on July 8, 2014

Fruit Berries parfait – baby friendly

The 4th July celebration is coming and that means bbq party + summer hot day + incredible fireworks!

Considering the heat I wanted to prepare a light and fresh dessert, beautiful to see and yummy at the same time. In addition to that something that my little Alex (1 year) could enjoy too. That’s how I ended up with those beautiful fruit parfaits :-)

super easy recipe, you can prepare it in advance the day before (they are even better) and you can play with the final decoration in order to surprise your guests and your kids!

You will need:

fruit parfait ingred

In a blender add the raspberries, the strawberries, the juice of 1/2 orange and 2 Tbsp of agave. You can also use honey if your baby is older than one year.

Mix everything for 1 minute and you will obtain a nice smooth puree’. Set it apart. If it is a very hot day place it in the refrigerator while you keep going with the recipe.

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In a medium bowl mix the ricotta cheese (very fresh, it’s important!), the yogurt, the remaining 3 Tbsp of agave syrup and the vanilla extract. I used vanilla greek yogurt, I needed the yogurt to be thick and creamy. Stir everything and place the cream in the refrigerator for 1 hour: that will thicken further more the cream and it will be easier to create separate layers of the parfait.

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Final part: layering.

The secret of a beautiful result is choosing a nice regular shape transparent container for the parfaits. You really want the layers to be seen, that’s the fun part!

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That’s the layer sequence that I’ve chosen, but you can change it as you like.

First layer at the bottom: vanilla white cream

Second layer: few sliced strawberries to create a base for the red berries mix

Third layer: blueberries and sliced strawberries

Fourth layer: vanilla white cream

Top: fun decoration with the berries

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Keep the glasses in the fridge for at least one hour before serving. If you are preparing the parfaits for kids it will be safer to choose plastic transparent glasses, you never know…

The recipe it 100% baby friendly, starting from 10 months. Just remember to cut the strawberries in small small pieces and cut the blueberries in pieces too so that your little one will be able to chew the tender fruit with his gums.

Have a wonderful party!!!

ciao ciao,b

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posted on June 30, 2014

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