First Meals (New Expanded Edition)

 
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Product Description

From first purees and delicious snacks to tempt toddlers with tiny appetites to imaginative and nutritious meals that the whole family can enjoy. First Meals includes more than 150 fully illustrated recipes, all of which have been tested on a panel of babies, toddlers, and young children.

There's a popular game at baby showers in which the new mom-to-be has to taste jarred baby food and guess its contents. Inevitably, the first comment is "Yuk! How do they eat this stuff?" The answer, of course, is that babies don't know there's an alternative--fresh, delicious, wholesome food made at home. In the beautifully and extensively illustrated First Meals, Annabel Karmel explains how simple and satisfying it is to make baby's food yourself--from the earliest mashed banana and steamed carrot purees to Singapore Noodles for 3- to 5-year-olds.

Karmel begins with an extensive section on early nutrition, pointing out that while grownups are often encouraged to follow a high-fiber, low-fat diet, "the under 5s need significantly more fat and concentrated sources of calories and nutrients to fuel their rapid growth during the early years." Continuing her "Basics" chapter are sections on keeping a well-stocked pantry; the equipment you'll need; illustrated, step-by-step instructions on preparing your first purees; and notes on freezing and reheating food. Close-up views of spoonfuls of puree are especially helpful for nervous first-time chefs. Chapters of recipes and feeding information are then broken down by age--4-6 months, 6-9 months, 9-12 months, 12-18 months, 18 months-2 years, 2-3 years, and 3-5 years, with each chapter addressing the particularities of the given age (questions about starting solids are answered for parents of 4-6-month-olds, while maintaining a healthy and varied diet and packing lunches are the concerns for the preschool child), along with 20 or more recipes appropriate to the child's level.

First published in England, the book has been "translated" well--ingredients are measured both in cups and in grams, and while there might be more parsnips called for than one normally sees in a North American diet, nearly every ingredient is obtainable at your regular supermarket. Karmel is up-to-date on the most recently accepted food recommendations as of 1999--she advises families with food allergies to avoid peanuts until a child is 3 years old, and while she cooks with cow's milk after 9 months, she doesn't recommend offering it in a cup until baby has reached his first birthday. Most importantly, she preaches a gospel of variety and of fun at mealtime. Cheesy Pasta Stars are made with tiny "stelline" pasta, and homemade Chicken Nuggets (made with grated apple and parsley in the breading) are formed in the shape of hearts--enough to break down the barriers of any picky eater. Stuffed Baked Potatoes become sailboats with cheese triangle sails and red pepper flags, and "Mock Fried Egg" looks just like the real thing--except it's vanilla yogurt with half an apricot on top! So trust your taste buds and leave those jars at the store--Annabel Karmel's First Meals will inspire you in the kitchen and leave your kids pounding the table for more. --Rebecca A. Staffel

Customer Reviews:

  • Great book for do-it-yourself moms
    I really like this book. It has great suggestions and pictures. Love pictures. I like that it has a great variety and also tells of cooking times, etc. for the various foods.
    A must buy for the mom who is making her own baby food.
    ...more info
  • Excellent book...Highly recommended!
    I love this book. I was irritated about the poor reviews that said this book "lacks substance" or complaints that the recipes aren't realistic, or whatever their issues are. They obviously didn't read the same book or are too lazy to make the recipes. Since that's the case: There's always jarred baby food.

    The point of this book is for parents who want to make their baby's first foods so they have more nutritional and healthful values rather than opting for the harmful additives in jarred baby foods. Yes, it will take more time to make the foods but it's worth it for the health of your baby.

    I was pleasantly surprised with this book. Not only does it cover baby's first foods but goes up to age 7 with tasty recipes that the whole family can enjoy together. It even shows colorful pictures of completed food dishes with smiley faces and edible hair (angel hair pasta) to make the food more enticing for your little one (since they tend to be picky sometimes).

    The book even goes above and beyond by sharing extra details about exactly when to start feeding your baby solids and what solids to start with (and which to avoid). It even tells you why your baby should only drink boiled tap water and to never give your child bottled water because of the high levels of sodium.

    This book is highly recommended for those who want to do the best for their baby....more info
  • Fun, fast and healthy
    If you really are interested in preparing your children's food because you are sick to death of all the unhealthy garbage that proliferates prepackaged food then this book is for you. If you are just wanting something easy, then it probably isn't. Other reviewers scoffed at using semolina, etc but these ingredients are actually relatively easy to find. The trouble is most of us have just gotten so complacent that we don't move beyond our norm. Also, this kindsof ingredients are much healthier for your child & for me, at least, that was the whole purpose of making her baby food! You don't have to do all the "fancy" presentations the author use, but it certainly makes it fun for your toddler and they can also assist you in preparing the food. The whole point is to get our kids eating better and this book is a great tool for that. ...more info
  • Fantastic source of recipes for your kids!
    This is the best kids recipe book I've used! There are so many things I like about this book. For one, the limited use of salt. The author provides recipes that are very mild and perfect for picky eaters. Plus, I get to eat some of the food and not worry about lots of salt. I also like the way she breaks down the age groups and provides recipes according to your child's age. I did find it easy to reference past recipes for my older toddler, and she still loved the food.

    There are some people that complain about the difficulty level of the recipes. They fail to mention that once you spend a couple of hours preparing food for your child, you can freeze most of it and heat it up during the week. The author does a great job of telling the reader which recipes can be frozen and which cannot. That makes meal planning so much easier for me.

    The author also gives you the nutrients in each recipe. Perfect for moms like me who want to watch what their kids are eating.

    All in all, this book is wonderful for mothers who want to make delicious, healthy good food for their children and families....more info
  • Can't live without it
    This book has everything you need to know about nutrition & full of ideas for healthy kids meals....more info
  • Fun book!
    My daughter is only a year old, so I haven't tried a lot of the recipes for older kids, but I've loved what I've done so far. We've also been able to turn some of the meals into family meals as she suggests. I can tell I'm really going to enjoy this book. The only downside is a few of the ingredients are hard for me to track down, but I've just changed the recipes to use something similar and so far, it has all turned out okay....more info
  • Great ideas, variety, and well organized
    I loved the organization of the book (by age) as it easily allows me to flip to the appropriate parts. There are a wide variety of recipes and neat presentation ideas to make the food fun....more info
  • Very Helpful
    I really like this book. It goes over all of your questions you would have from first weaning your baby to making their first purees. I've made several of the recipes and my son loves them all....more info
  • Pros and Cons
    Pros: Great photos. Great descriptions of what tools you need. Good serving and storage suggestions. For younger babies, she gives a great variety/mix of foods. I like how it was written out in sections.
    Cons: Time consuming when you get to the older baby/toddler section. Lots of different ingredients I wouldn't buy or use in my own adult recipes (I just had to remind myself she ia a gourmet cook by trade). Not good for picky eaters. But I guess if you fed your baby all the recipes she suggests, then maybe your baby wouldn't grow to be a finicky toddler.?...more info
  • Author is British!
    I haven't read this particular book, but I have a similar one by the same author purchased in the UK. The author is British and guidelines as to when to introduce foods vary from those set here in the USA. This may help to explain why Annabel's advice differs from professionals' here. I usually live in the UK and some of her advice is in conflict with the health visitors' amd doctors there as well. Anyone who has many children know that they change these guidelines quite regularly. Even a couple of years ago, they told us to feed babies cereal from 4 months old, now it is 6 months. They used to say not to give kids cheese until 8 years old. My doctor told me to feed my 8 month old son at 5 months because he was really, really ready. I didn't feed him nuts, dairy, soy, etc. Just rice! Speaking of which these recipes call for some milk, but it is cooked. I am sure most of you are using formula made of dairy(I am still breastfeeding), so I am not sure what the problem is with that??
    What I do like about her cooking is that she does encourage people to introduce real food to kids instead of frozen pizza, frozen chicken nuggets, takeaways or the equally revolting (but not unhealthy)baby food in jars. It is also so much cheaper to take some of your own dinner and mash it up for yuor baby rather than buying jars of food. I use jars for traveling, when I know I can't heat up my frozen purees. ...more info
  • Geat receipes but she starts babies on some food way too early
    This is my favorite book for babies as well as for the grown ups recipes. The only word of caution - she starts babies on many food way too early - so read this book together with a book written by medical professional who advices which food is better to start at what month....more info
  • Good but.....
    this book is good if you are looking for new ideas on what to feed your toddler. some of the recipes are not very realist and not always suitable for freezing. for the most part it is good and lets you get in your food groups and some are pretty yummy for mommy too....more info
  • bvaughan@libero.it
    I bought this book for my daughter when she was pregnant. She had been thinking of getting a different book, but decided this one was probably even better. She used it extensively when my granddaughter was first beginning to try solid foods, and continued to use it through about 9 months. At that point, the baby was eating nearly everything her parents ate, and there was no need to tempt her into eating vegetables.

    I also used the book to make baby food when I was visiting my daughter. I made things in large quantities and froze small portions in ice cube trays. The next day, I would put the "cubes" in a plastic freezer bag and start over with a different food. That way my daughter had plenty of meals ready to use when I went home.

    I didn't find the recipes too complicated or lengthy. Sometimes I modified ingredients or simplified a procedure. You don't really need a book to cook carrots in the microwave; this book combines ingredients to make tasty and healthy meals. The results were good enough to eat up myself if the baby turned up her nose at them.

    There were a few things that had ingredients that my daughter's pediatrician thought were not age-appropriate. When in doubt, the pediatrician wins. ...more info
  • Easy and delicious recipes
    This is a great book full of information and recipes. They are easily modified recipes also. For the meat-based protein recipes, I suggest adding a fruit. I made the chicken casserole and added pears or applesauce to help tone down the stronger flavor. My son loved it. I also add pastina to add texture....more info
  • Not realistic
    This book flies in the face of most of the literature I've read about when to introduce foods to new eaters. It also is unrealistic, in my opinion. Not many moms will have time to cook like this for their baby.
    Maybe check it out from a library or flip through it on a store shelf before you decide to purchase, to see if it's right for you.
    ...more info
  • Very Helpful
    I found that the book had great ideas that I would have never have thought of. ...more info
  • EXCELLENT book - easy, tasty, nutritious!
    This is a great book - I have used it for 4 months now and have recommended it highly to many others. Takes the fear out of making your own baby food! Delicious, nutritious food - and with "normal" ingredients. Several other books that I looked at had strange ingredients that my husband and I would never eat (ie: seaweed??) - with this book, we actually finish her food if she doesn't eat it all!

    I appreciate the mixture of recipes to make as well as simple 1-2 ingredient no-cook and quick-cook purees. She has close-up photos to show you texture (which I definitely needed early on), as well as suggestions on how to cook, puree, and freeze basic fruits and vegetables. The book is MUCH better organized than others I looked at, which makes it much easier and enjoyable to use.

    It's a shame that so many people are too intimidated to make their own baby food. It truly is easy and so much cheaper - and better for your baby! This book helps build your confidence!...more info
  • Wonderful Product
    This is a great book. There is a wide variety of recipes for all ages. The recipes that are suggested for older children are also great for adults. I bought one for myself and one for a friend (who also loves it) and I have recommended it over and over again to other mothers. It suggests great (easy) recipes and food combinations for babies that I wouldn't have thought of. So far it's a hit and I'm looking forward to trying more of the recipes....more info
  • Great variety for baby
    One of the most challenging questions of being a new parent is - what do I feed this little person? This book gives some great ideas for adding variety to your baby's diet. Some of the recipes are a little over-the-top and, let's face it, I'm sticking with store-bought baby food rather than making purees at home (who has the time?). But when you have a baby that eats like a bottomless pit (like my 9-month-old) there are some great recipes that are appetizing and well-balanced. It's a great help when you want to make sure your baby is getting everything he/she needs in their diet....more info
  • Great cook book for baby foods!
    My partner and I really love this cook book. The recipes are easy and everyone keeps asking us where we buy our baby food. They are really surprised that we didn't buy it at all buy made it at home. Making your own baby food sounds like a lot of work, but it is actually pretty easy. Our 8 month old hasn't turned down a meal from it yet! Aside from the great recipes, the book also includes helpful information about when to feed your growing infant different types of food, organic vegetables and general nutrition for growing babies. An excellent purchase that encouraged us to make our own recipes and we even bought Karmel's toddler cook book for future use! ...more info
  • Disappointed
    I order this book and I am very disappointed. I don't considered using vegetable oil or frying anything healthy. Also the recipes are time consuming. The pictures are nice and all of the shapes they make out of the food but lacking substance....more info
  • Great ideas to get started
    Previously bought the book "Super Baby Food" on the advice of my pediatrician and was very discouraged and overwhelmed. Then my mother in law brought over this book that she picked up in a garage sale - THANK GOD! Yes, it's short but that is a great thing when you just need a little inspiration. What parent has time to read more than 1 or 2 pages at a time anyway? Baby is hungry right now! :)...more info
  • Beautiful book but a bit time consuming
    I love this cook book and it answers a lot of the general questions about feeding a baby especially if it's your first child and everything seems new and confusing. The older recipes are wonderful and great tasting but you do need a bit of time and if your a working parent then some of these recipes are a bit far fetched. However, many of the recipes can be frozen so it's great to cook up big batches of food and freeze them. ...more info
  • Absolutely best cookbook - don't be afraid to try to cook the amazing and tasty visual treats!
    I first checked this book out of the library when my son was a baby and found really awesome recipes for baby food. I could hardly resist eating the peas, leeks and potatoe recipe myself even as a puree! The recipes for party foods were a huge hit for his first birthday. Overnight I became the star of our baby group!

    Now with my second child I've ventured for some of the more exciting and more rewarding recipes. Last night I made half of the recipe for chicken snails. Okay, so I didn't finish the recipe to make the snail but the homemade chicken sausages were just soo awesome and tasty that no one cared. It took an hour for my 2.5 year old toddler (with an 8-month old clamouring for attention) and I to make the sausages. The effort was so worth it as both of us were so proud to make homemade tasty sausages!

    I was really surprised that someone would give this book lower reviews. Some of the recipes are more intricate, but that's the great part about the book - this is not a "just-add-water" 5-minute meal cookbook. The author is a gourmet chef and it shows in her recipes. I'd recommend using all of the recipes for adults/family dinners as well (just don't puree, or leave out some of the finer decorations that the kids go crazy about). Stick to the simpler recipes if you like, but soon you'll find yourself wanting to spend an extra 30 minutes for the visual and culinary treat of "sleeping cannelloni"!...more info
  • Real people (babies) deserve real food
    I used this book for both of my older children (now 7 & 4) and just dug it back out for our new little one (7 months old). Once again I am impressed by the variety of recipes presented. I think offering a wide variety of healthy foods from the start of solid feeding is one of the reasons I don't have any trouble introducing new foods to my older children now. They love their vegitables and enjoy trying all types of food even those that many adults would find new or exotic. I agree that some of the recipes take a bit longer than opening a jar and reheating. Many take the same amount of time as preparing a dish for an adult dinner...but since many of the recipies can be frozen (I make bigger batches and then freeze in small portions that can be thawed as needed) I only need set aside a couple of hours every month or so to have a wide variety of good and healthy dishes available to serve.

    My older kids still enjoy some of the dishes (e.g., chicken, parsnip, carrot casserole and the tasty beef recipe) I just get to skip the puree step (even my husband enjoys some of the recipes too!).

    Overall tasty and healthy recipes that I feel are worth the effort to help foster a lifetime love of "good for you" foods....more info
  • Good Ideas
    My 9 month old has enjoyed several of the recipes in this book so far. It is refreshing to be able to give him meals that actually taste decent to me instead of the boring store bought fare....more info
  • Do you really have two hours available to cook your baby's dinner?!
    While the recipes for the youngest babies are fine (well, it's not exactly hard to puree a couple of pears!), as the book goes on its recipes become ever more sophisticated and time-consuming. There are meals in here that require more ingredients and preparation time than I would invest in an adult dinner party! And at least your dinner party guests will actually appreciate your offerings instead of point blank refusing to touch them, as has happened on more than one occasion when I've ill-advisedly summoned the effort and time commitment to slog away at one of Ms. Karmel's gourmet creations.

    The book is certainly very pretty, as all the Dorling Kindersley publications are. As to whether it is actually useful... unless you are prepared to commit substantial amounts of time and effort into preparing your children's meals, only to find that they may well reject them anyway, I would go with something a little less challenging....more info
  • So far, a great reference and healthy guide.
    I really love this book. As a new mom who plans to make most all of our daughter's food, this has been extremely helpful. It takes the time to outline the stages of weaning at the beginning and has easy directions, with different cooking options, for the recipes. It clearly states prep time, which recipes are okay to be frozen, the main nutrients the ingredients provide, allergy information, etc. I am excited to keep using it as our daughter gets older for our whole family....more info
  • Tasty Healthy Treats-for babies, toddlers and preschoolers
    Just because it's designed for babies, does not mean you or a friend, even a spouse won't enjoy these meals. They're great finger foods for parties, basketball games, etc. Instead of pigs-n-a- blanket or chips, try one of the delicious and healthy finger foods from FIRST MEALS. Why not take care of your BIG BABY? After all, he was here before the little ones and it's just as important to take care of all of our love ones. This book has great photos of the meals and easy to follow directions. The have fun foods that peaky preschoolers will love. See for yourself!...more info
  • Beautiful pictures, some great purees, but lots of false nutritional information that can be harmful for your child
    First of all, I bought the book Superfoods as well ( that one has the same basic recipes, but with gorgeous illustrations) and my review for that book will be the same.
    The plus side to both books is that Annabel Karmel is very creative. I mean very. She makes food so presentable to children ( esp toddlers)and very fun to make ( if you have the time). She even gives some accurate nutritional info about the importance of garlic, ginger, and other herbs/spices in a person's diet ( however, she fails to mention that some children have stomach problems after ingesting garlic).
    Where she goes WAY off is with her general nutritional information. For example, she recommends microwaving foods ad says it is not harmful. FALSE It depletes anything that it cooks of all nutrients. She goes on to mention the importance of including beef, pork, and poultry in a infants diet. In the China Study, which is the most comprehensive study ever done on nutrition in both America and abroad, it was discovered over 27 years of research that all meat ( excluding fish) and dairy are the main ( yes MAIN) contributers to cancer and a host of other problems that are affecting society. On top of that, most meat ( even if it says 'free range') has horrific hormones added to it, and the cattle/pigs/poultry eat poor quality, genetically modified ( on cheap farms) grass and corn. As far as providing adequate protein, calcium, and iron for our little ones, there are plenty of fortified cereals for infants, and veggies such as broccoli have lots of absorbable protein and calcium ( and spinach is a great source of iron).
    Even if you could care less about the impact that our consumption of meat and animal biproducts has on the environment, think about your child eating meat that came from an unhealthy, abused and hormone laden animal that has been eating ground animal waste ( no joke). It is not a pretty or healthy picture.
    Please do your research before giving your children meat and dairy, and be sure to find out if your child has any allergies to soy or wheat.
    Books I recommend for you begin your research:
    The China Study
    Vegetarian Mother and Baby
    Super Baby Food
    The Petit Appetit Cookbook
    Fast Food Nation
    Quantum Wellness
    Skinny Bitch ( a humorous book for moms that has excellent and well researched health info)
    Simply Natural Baby Food
    ...more info
  • Great Book
    we have just started feeding solids to our son, so I still haven't used many food ideas yet. But this is a great book looking foward to when he's eating more grownup food....more info
  • Recipes too Complicated and Time Consuming
    I bought this product after reading the reviews regarding how complicated the recipes were thinking that how much time and effort could baby food recipes take. After reading through the book, you realize that in order to make many of the receipes you need lots of spare time to food shop, prepare and cook. All unrealistic given the time constraints of caring for a 12 month old and working part-time.

    Also, the recipes call for taking time to make food look "cute" and eye-catching, even recipes for older babies and young toddlers. Children that young don't care that the veggies are shaped like animals, flowers, etc. The presentation called for in the recipes is over the top.

    Lastly, some of the recipes call for foods and spices that I wouldn't think to give a young toddler.

    Overall, this book has unique receipes, but the recipes are not as simple, quick and easy as they could/should be. I wouldn't recommend buying this book. Instead, think of some of the other less complicated cook books. ...more info
  • If you have an extra two hours a day and love to cook then...
    This book is for people who love to cook and have lots of time on their hands to do it. The book was not for me, too much work and not enough payoff.
    I found a few good idea's and yes, a few good recipes but beware before you buy it, it is not for beginners.
    ...more info
  • Great book, great recipes!
    I got this book prior to our son being born with the hope that I would be making all his food. I've now been doing so using this book and her Top 100 Purees for the last 5 months. I primarily use this book since we got past the most basic purees. I have made more than half of the recipes up through the 9-12 month section and every one of them has turned out great. There has only been one beef recipe that our son doesn't seem to care much for. I have to say too that I have tasted every recipe I've made and they are all delicious. I don't see how you could go wrong with it. I usually make a double or triple batch of each and freeze portions because the servings are typically small but when you buy the ingredients you usually have much more than they call for.

    I have one other book that was given to me and is written by a gourmet couple. I tried two of their recipes and they were both a disaster. One I could salvage and the other I had to just throw away. You really can't go wrong with this book. The recipes are easy and the food is great and nutritious. I use a hand mixer to puree and it works well. Enjoy and have fun! Your babies will love it and will grow up with an appetite for all kinds of good food instead of just junk!...more info
  • Great Book
    As a first time Mom, I though this book provided a lot of basic ideas and some creative options. I would definitely recommend this book for any parent....more info
  • help for the cooking challenged
    I really like this cookbook. I know my infant needs good nutrition, and now have a great resource to use. The book does use some "new" foods for my family, but now that we have stocked the kitchen it is a snap to try new healthy fun food. My son, 15 months, loves these recipes. They are not the quickest meals in the world, but if you enjoy preparing good food for mealtime, this will be a useful book for you....more info
  • ready to go
    Hope this will be helpful in feeding my new grandson this fall. Looks great and explains everything without being preachy....more info
  • The best baby gift I received...
    I had this book on my wish list when my daughter was born and was thrilled to get one as a gift. As a first time parent, I had no clue what I was doing and was exceptionally paranoid about knowing what was OK to feed my baby and when. This book alleviated a great deal of uncertainty for me.

    The recipes are practical and delicious. I followed her advice about freezing food in ice cube trays and saved a lot of time and money doing so. Homemade baby food is so reasonable and healthy. My daughter is 4 now and a great eater. I attribute a great deal of it to the variety and fun this book helped me to create. We still use it frequently and many of the ideas have become second nature to me. Additionally, it has become my standard gift to all new parents. Definitely worth it. ...more info
  • Good layout, tasty recipes
    This is an attractive, easy-to-read recipe book, with a good mixture of fun, easy and interesting recipes...more info
  • Best Book and Gift ever
    I have given this book to SEVERAL moms and posted to my mothers club email list about it. It is colorful, inviting and just fun to look through and read. No high pressure or preachiness. Just great, enticing photos and recipes that take you from the first spoonful to nutrition for your pre-teen. (My son is not that old yet but this book will grow with him and me.)...more info
  • Everything has tasted good!
    I've made several of the recipes for my 10 month old. He has liked every one of them. They aren't too difficult to make, and the ingredients are simple. I can go to the store without a list, and generally remember what I need to get for a recipe....more info
  • Great Tool for Feeding Babies & Kids
    I haven't had an opportunity to use the recipes in this book yet but I love the informational sections of the book that discuss picky eaters, when to start feeding your baby solid foods, what types of nutrients your babies and kids need to stay healthy and the like. This book is broken into sections that range from the first foods offered to babies starting the foray into solid foods to kids ages 3 to 7. With recipes that are nutritious and have visual appeal, you'll be able to find something to satisfy even the toughest food critics in the house....more info
  • First Meals
    This book was just what I was looking for! Great, easy, tasty recipes. My one year old has enjoyed the recipes I've made from this book, a nice change from the usual. Wonderful advice about the different stages and how to get picky eaters to eat their veggies! Would highly recommend to moms and dads who are looking to provide a healthy alternative to store-bought pre-packaged foods. ...more info
  • Excellent!
    My pediatritian recommended this book, and although I'm using a lot of Earth's Best, I have tried a couple of recipes and my daughter loves them. The only thing I didn't like is that it doesn't specify when you should give them each food (specifically) ,it just says starting at "17 weeks"....more info
  • My baby SCREAMED for more of this recipe!
    This book is very well organized and written. There's so much more than baby & kid appropriate recipes. The author literally teaches you what foods to feed children at which stages. This is my 3rd baby and I wish I had had the book for the other 2.

    On our first recipe, my baby literally screamed for more and then clapped because he liked it so much! We couldn't get it in fast enough. Portions were for a 9 - 12 month baby so I easily tripled and fed all 3 kids.

    I have only used it from 9 months on so I have not tried to make the smaller baby appropriate food. From 9 months on, the recipes were not difficult. I felt good about what I fed my kids and it was pretty easy!

    I feel good about what I fed my kids for dinner and it was so easy! ...more info
  • A fantastic and comprehensive book
    As a mother of 5, I can tell you I truly appreciate the variety of recipes and suggestions for feeding a baby. I am a gourmet cook and I spend a great deal of time preparing my family's meals. I look forward to using the many recipes and suggestions for my new daughter....more info
  • WONDERFUL: If you are nutrition-conscious and like to cook!
    This book isn't for everyone, but is WONDERFUL for our little girl and our family. My husband and I are determined to raise our daughter eating a WIDE variety of healthy foods... not a picky eater like so many children today.
    The recipes are fairly simple. She does have some foods common to England, but I found making substitutions to be easy. The foods/recipes are nutritious and yet appealing to our daughter. She has loved each of the recipes thus far, with the exception of one... this had fish and this was her first time to try fish. Nevertheless, we will keep trying and I believe she will be liking this dish soon as well.
    I highly recommend this book to anyone who wants to provide nutritious, wholesome foods to their child/children. Loving to cook helps as well!...more info
  • Baby Loves the food
    This is a good book if you have time to make your baby's food. My daughter has loved every receipe (sp?) I have tried so far. I love to cook, and consider myself a pretty good cook, but I found some of the receipe's a little tricky. For example, I did not know how to peel a tomatoe or roast a bell pepper. Had I read through the directions first I would have purchased pre roasted bell pepper's instead of attempting to roast my own. Even with these small errors on my part, the food has turned out really good. I really appreciate the menue idea's which I am trying to follow for my daughter. I only wish the author had enclosed nutritional information....more info
  • for the budding family nutritionist
    With my newborn, I was determined and felt responsible to become the informed nutritionist for our family. This book helped me understand the benefits of ingredient combinations in recipes and meal planning. I now have a greater understanding of how to maximize vitamin and mineral absorption. With that said, this book can be very intimidating if you are a busy mom with only minutes to get hungry mouths fed. Treat the "art" of the recipes as something to do if you have time to spare. Focus instead on the recipe content and being creative with combinations. Also, being a "Dr. Sears" disciple, I necessarily needed to defer certain recipes to a later time due to the recipe containing ingredients not recommended for that age range by Dr Sears. This meant certain recipes recommended by Karmel for 6-9 mos, for example, needed to be deferred to 12 mos. I found myself spending 10-15 min per recipe cross-referencing ingredients for a particular recipe I wanted to make with what was recommended by Dr. Sears to ensure it would be appropriate for our little one. All in all, I recommend this book for the wealth of nutritional information and recipes provided. ...more info
  • Good for each baby
    This cook book as good advice and ideas for making homemade baby food. Each time I had a baby I reviewed it. There's recipes from 4 months to 5 years+. Some are simple and some are gourmet....more info
  • Good information
    I received this book as a gift when my first child was born. It has some really great information. I feel I have saved money and my children have had healthier food to eat. I recently purchased this for my brother for their first child. I love the tip about freezing the baby food in ice cube trays. My children love the homemade baby food more then the store purchased food. The only thing that this food does not do is travel well on trips. Then I go back to store purchased food; much to my children's disgust....more info
  • Love it!!
    This cookbook is great!! Easy to read and also the recipes seem to go over great with my daughter!! I would tell everyone who is going to make baby food to get this book! ...more info
  • Baby likes food!
    My baby has already eaten and enjoyed quite a few recipes in this book. I am not a good cook by any means, nor do I enjoy cooking much. However, these recipes are relatively simple, and the ingredients are easy to find. Most of the recipes give alternative options, so your choices rarely get boring. I've had other baby cookbooks, but this one is our favorite....more info
  • Great ideas, but tons of work
    I was excited to get this book, fearing that because of hectic schedules, we were relying on too many pre-processed foods for my 1 1/2 year old son. This book was a great idea source, it helped me to realize all the possibilities I had in feeding him and that there were things he was old enough to try that I hadn't thought of. I have so far tried three of the recipes though, and I have to say, they aren't for people who don't want to spend the better part of their days in the kitchen. The prep times and cooking times, I found way off. I spent about 2 hours and 45 minutes on a dish that claimed to take 35 minutes total, and I'm no novice cook, I swear. They are absurdly time consuming. My son liked 2 out of 3 that I've tried, and my husband loved them too, they are great recipes. Besides the amount of time and effort these recipes call for, I'm also not thrilled with the fact that the majority of these call for frying. I thought we were all pretty clear that frying wasn't healthy? But it does taste good and I guess that the overload of veggies is making up for it? Anyway I recommend it with the warning that most of these are not fast and easy. But they are loaded with all kinds of healthy foods that I wouldn't have otherwise introduced to him. So overall it's a great guide, even if I'll be modifying the recipes from now on to cut out time and maybe the frying part. ...more info
  • Terrible baby cook book for busy moms!
    This book was given to me as a gift, and as an extremely busy and exhausted mom with 2 infants, I was immediately put off with the images of the food prepared. Here's a list of what most busy moms do not have time for:

    * Bread cut out with cookie cutters omitting crust
    * Hard vegetables and cheeses cut out with cookie cutters
    * Julienned vegetables made for wiskers and tails for animal shapes
    * Faces and feet added to multiple dishes using fresh vegetables, etc.
    * Toothpicks added to Jell-O Boats with triangular wax paper (what mom gives their toddlers toothpicks?). Text says put on child's plate, then remove the toothpick sail. Please, what a waste of time and kids do not like things given and then taken away immediately.

    This author, who appears to have written quite a few books, doesn't seem to know pediatric standards on when to introduce certain foods to babies. Many of the dishes for under 12 months include cow's milk, citrus, strawberries, orange juice, etc, that are known to cause terrible allergic reactions in kids and can cause a lifetime allergic condition if introduced too early.

    For example:
    * Pediatricians advise no cow's milk until 12 months of age, but many recipes are in the book calling for cups of cow's milk such as in the Creamy Chicken & Broccoli dish for ages 9-12 months, Flaked Cod with Tomatoes & Zucchini, Filet of Fish Mornay with vegetables, as well as numerous other dishes before age of 12 months. The book even tells you to give cow's milk at 6 months in the recipe Flounder in Leek & Cheese sauce. Also Flounder is known to often have small bones. I would not give my 6 month old such a dish!
    * Raspberries and strawberries are recommended in this book before age 12 months as well, which are foods NOT recommended by Pediatricians until over a year of age. They are known to often cause severe allergies and rashes.
    * Raisins for a 9 month old? - potential choking hazard recommended in the Fruity Baby Muesli. Not a good idea. My kids, at 9 months of age, would have gagged on this dish for sure.
    * Tablespoons of whole butter (with no suggestion of perhaps a butter substitute) in just about every other dish.
    * Lentils for a 6 month old in the Lentil & Vegetable puree recipe? Babies have enough digestion problems, then give them these kind of beans too?
    * Strawberries for a 6 month old in Peach, Apple and Strawberry Puree? Pediatricians say wait until 12 months, or even 18 months before offering a baby strawberries, blackberries or raspberries or citrus of any kind (oranges, grapefruits, etc).
    * Egg yokes are featured on page 53, Ages 9-12 months, and our pediatrician said no to egg yokes or egg whites until at least 1 year of age.

    This book isn't all bad. If you have abundant time away from your infant/toddler, or if your infant sleeps a lot, then many of the recipes are ok, but babies/toddlers probably will reject many of them, like the busy dishes with too many ingredients mixed together in sauces. Also, my kids liked being introduced foods separately that are finger friendly (not sticky), so they can recognize and even talk about them. From my experience, an 18 month old does not like plates of numerous mixed-up foods like the Sweet & Sour Vegetable Stir Fry. I sometimes mix up to 3 items in a dish, but no more (like chicken, broccoli & carrots over a bed of rice).

    Personally, I didn't find this book helpful at all as a mom with an infant and a toddler, although a lot of effort went into it. The author should have worked with pediatric standards and experienced moms, and perhaps the results would have been more helpful. I do like the Egg-Fried Rice dish, although the shrimp made my 3 year old throw up (think allergic). I learned from our part-time nanny, who is married to a chef, that it's faster and easier to make fried rice by browning uncooked rice in a pan, then add the onions, thin pieces of sliced ham, carrots, etc, then add water, then simmer (cook scrambled egg in separate pan). Our kids love our nanny's recipe for fried rice and much faster.

    Also, the layout of the book is also confusing with essential information hidden in a preface or random spots, recipes overlapping or running onto another page, and pictures scattered about. I like recipe books that dedicate a 2-page spread to a single recipe (with no overlap), and include a section at the top that lists the ingredients, then the total prep & cook time, suggestions for what to prepare in advance to accompany the dish, and lastly suggestions for substitutions. This book is laid out more like an editorial magazine for someone to sit and read while on the sofa or while getting a pedicure, and not for a busy mom or dad who needs to run into the kitchen and make something fast and healthy for their child.

    In summary, this baby/toddler recipe book is for a mom who has the luxury of telling her professional chef on staff which recipes to make without concern for allergies, choking hazards, or what children actually like to eat.
    ...more info
  • Great Book
    I love this book! Modsuzi must have really been tired from not cooking for her children when she wrote her review. Obviously, you don't give a baby foods that your pediatrician says are not recommended. A few ingredients that should not be introduced until one year are included in the 9-12 months section. Call me crazy but that seems perfectly logical to me, but then I actually think and cook for my kids at the same time - and without a nanny too. Go figure!...more info
  • OK, but not practical for picky eaters
    The ideas in here were interesting and creative..but my kids have been willing to eat about 10% of the recipes I've made. They also aren't for people short on time. I have triplets and some of the recipes take more time than I have. If you have kids that want to try lots of things, and you have lots of time it's a great book..but for me it's something I pick up when I actually have some extra time - not every day....more info

 

 
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