When AK was just a few months old, I could not wait for her to become 6 months old because that was when she could start her food journey. The first thing she had was rice pudding and she lapped it up so quickly I could not balance the bowl and spoon properly. As time passed, she has had the blended purees of chicken, fish and vegetables and now, the world is like her oyster when it comes to food.
My baby girl does not like bland food anymore and she is at the stage where you better share whatever you eat with her. Even if it’s fried rice or potato chips, spicy or not spicy, she seems to like it all. At the risk of sounding like a bad parent, she does not get to eat the mentioned food so often but I had to get creative when it comes to her food.
During her first two days at kindie, the teachers mentioned that she did not eat much of her food so I thought of blending some purees but when I did, a teacher of hers mentioned that once kids start on solids, it’s best to not give purees often in case they fall back into the habit and do not want solids anymore.
Since I try cooking and packing her lunches these days, it has been decided that whatever is prepared has soup and a bit of rice (because we are Asian that way). She is starting to like fruits now like plums and watermelon, so I try stuffing a plum into her lunch pack. At home, she is a BIG eater and I mean BIG. She often eats half an adult’s portion and has the belly to show for it (sometimes she loses balance when she runs).
Surprisingly, she is not fat but maybe it’s because she runs about. I have joked with people that maybe she diets during weekdays and then has cheat days on weekends but actually, even on weekday nights, she eats like crazy when she is at home with us.
I get such pleasure from cooking for her and Mr Grumpy and more pleasure when they happen to really enjoy the food. It’s a win-win situation: healthy, hopefully tasty food for not only her but for Mr Grumpy and I too (plus we are lazy to cook twice!). While I put a bit of pepper, I skip the salt and sugar since it’s not good for her right now.
There are also some spices you can start introducing to toddlers, but you do need to watch out and see if there are allergic reactions over a span of 4 days. Thank goodness for Dr Google and Pinterest to let us know about these things. I generally try seeing if a few sites say the same thing so I would know if it’s okay (or some whackjob just spreading nonsense online).
So, these days, I make her fish/chicken soup which is pretty easy to make. Here is a simple chicken soup recipe:
- Chicken carcass
- A big onion
- 3-4 cloves of garlic
- Small piece of ginger
- Olive Oil
- 2 cups of water
- Green beans
- Black peppercorns
- Coriander leaves
- Cut up the onion, garlic, ginger, carrots, coriander leaves and green beans
- Fire up a pot with a bit of olive oil and then add the onion, garlic and ginger. Stir until fragrant.
- Add in the carrots and green beans and stir until they become a bit soft.
- Add in the chicken carcass with the black peppercorns and stir again.
- Add in the water and stir then bring to a boil.
- Cover the pot and let it simmer for 30 to 45 minutes.
- Add the coriander leaves and serve.
You can add chicken pieces if you like when you add the chicken carcass. Why I use the carcass is because with fish or chicken or beef, the flavor comes from the bones and the longer you let the soup simmer, the more tasty it generally becomes. I have it with pasta/rice.
If making for adults, you can add salt and maybe a bit of chicken powder if you like. Many recipes use chicken broth but you can also get the flavors through the bones. When I made fish soup, I replaced the green beans with spinach and added it towards the end so that it does not taste too soggy/limp. 🙂