Nora, at 9 1/2 months, is quite a good little eater. But there are some things that she loves instantly, and some that she rejects. I started rethinking how I cook and reading up on nutrition when, at about 8 months, I realized how much she loved the following:
- restaurant dim sum
- restaurant Pad Thai
- chicken and matzo ball soup
- hamburger mixed with avocado
- black cod
And she rejected the following vegetarian staples from our kitchen:
- crumbled, pan-fried tempeh with whole wheat pasta
- udon noodles with tofu and seaweed in miso soup
- lentil stew
- steamed broccoli
Eventually, we realized that the common denominator was fat and moisture. She’s actually pretty good with lumpy or irregular textures, but she tends to strongly reject lowfat cooking (aside from fresh fruit and bread, which she loves to feed herself).
Once we made that discovery, concoctions like these gained ready acceptance
- steel-cut oatmeal with plain, full-fat yogurt
- steamed kale, minced and mashed into avocado
Once I started thinking about it, it made sense. Breast milk is rich and nutrient-dense. Why on earth should I be feeding a baby diet food? So here I am, trying to rework family staples and add new items to the repertoire, in order that we can all eat together and eat well.