Being a parent of a bub with eczema can be tiring and confusing, and our hearts go out to all our mums and dads caring for little ones with eczema. If you are starting to introduce solids to your little ones and wondering what foods to start with, we have created some lower chemical puree combinations to get you started, be sure to also check out our 'Kids Corner' for advice on what foods can be introduced first and how.
When first introducing solids, 1 new food every 3 days can be helpful to see how your little responds and identify any allergies and intolerances. Introduce each new food on its own and then continue with that food for 3 days before introducing the next food.
Making vegetable purees..
Making fruit and vegetable purees can be so easy, and with options to freeze it just got even easier. For purees a general guide to go by is peel your vegetable/fruit of choice, dice into cubes about 2 cm x 2 cm, fill 1 cup full of the diced vegetables/fruit and steam with a lid covering for about 10 minutes (beets may need a little longer but most vegetables will soften after 10 minutes). Be sure to check out the video above for visual guidance.
Some eczema friendly fruit and vegetable options to puree for bub can include...
banana (high amines)
papaya (high amines)
Be sure to check out the starting solids table in 'kids corner' for additional guidance on what month to start.
Fruits such as banana and papaya do not have to be cooked prior and can be blended as is. Pears can be pureed raw or after steaming, and apple can be steamed.
Once soft, puree the vegetable/fruit in a high speed blender or nutri bullet until it forms a soft puree, depending on the vegetable it will need about 2-4 tablespoons of filtered water to help form the puree, so add 1 tablespoon at a time until it is pureed to your liking.
Storing the purees
After pureeing, vegetables can stay in the fridge for 48-72 hours (fruit like pear and banana will oxidise quickly so these may be best fresh or frozen straight away). Also remember to store the baby food in the fridge within 1 hour of making to prevent bacteria developing.
To freeze your purees, use a well cleaned and dried ice cube tray and spoon your individual purees into each cube. Cover and freeze until solid, then store in a ziplock bag or other bag of choice, being sure to label your puree add the date frozen (as you would want to use the purees up within 2 months).
Reheating the purees
To reheat the purees, on a low heat, slowly warm the frozen cube/cubes in a smaller saucepan until the puree is warm and no longer frozen.
OR remove the puree/purees and store covered in the refrigerator for it to slowly thaw out. This will take some time, so you will need to plan ahead for this one.
Fruit and vegetable combinations
Some fruit and vegetable combinations to trial include..
Pear and Green bean - equal portions of each, stir together and serve.
Banana and sweet potato -equal portions of each, stir together and serve.
Beetroot and apple - equal portions of each, stir together and serve.
Pumpkin and carrot - equal portions of each, stir together and serve.
Peas and carrot - equal portions of each, stir together and serve.
*Breast milk can also be added to these purees to thin the consistency/add extra nutrition.
Rice and oat porridge are also 2 grains which baby can do well with in the early stages.
To make the porridge, in a high speed blender or nutri bullet, blend about 1 1/4 cups of your choice of rice (such as brown rice) to make 1 cup of fine rice flour. And blend 1 1/4 cup of oats using the same method to make 1 cup of oat flour.
This flour can then be stored in an air tight container to use when needed.
Now bring 1 cup of filtered water to the boil in a pot, turn down to a simmer then slowly sift the flour into the simmering water whisking at the same time to help prevent clumping (if too much clumping occurs and you need your porridge super smooth for bub you can blend this afterwards). Once all the flour has been whisked in continue stirring with the whisk while the mixture thickens into a soft porridge. Add more water if needed to your desired consistency. Remove from the heat and allow to cool.
The oat or rice porridge can be stored in the fridge for up to 1 week and mixed into pureed fruits and vegetables.
Some combinations options could include..
Green bean, pear and rice
Pumpkin and oats
Apple and oats
sweet potato, rice and pear.
Red lentil puree
Many other beans and legumes can be introduced, however red lentils can be a nice easy to digest and easy to cook legume to start. Simply bring a pot of water to the boil, add 1 cup of red lentils, and boil for 10 minutes or until soft. Red lentils can also be soaked prior for even easier digestion.
Puree in a high speed blender or nutri bullet until soft and mix with other purees such as...
rice and red lentils (for a complete protein)
sweet potato and red lentils
pumpkin, carrot and red lentils