Practical Eating

Joni Surette Nelson Makes Ratatouille for Babies

Ratatouille! (via Joni Surette Nelson)

[The Love Challenge's Love Belly Feat asks to to prepare and enjoy One Wild Meal. Obvious takes on this include oysters, kumquats, get the idea. But another perhaps less obvious option: Prepare a special meal for your baby. Not your metaphorical baby. Your actual baby. Nieces, nephews, friends' babies, neighbors' babies...all legit options. And just because you're not personally eating the meal doesn't mean you won't enjoy it. Gurgling is a very satisfying thank you -the Eds.]

Joni Surette Nelson is the creator of the blog, "Feeding Little Foodies," and leads workshops on preparing fresh and nutritious meals for babies in Los Angeles.

Why homemade baby food? It's fresh, delicious, nutritious, wholesome, and made with love. And once I rolled up my sleeves, peeled a piece of produce or two, and gave that processor a whirl, I was shockingly surprised by how easy, fun, cheap and delicious making my own baby food was. And once I had developed my own little system, I couldn't imagine feeding my baby anything else.

What do you tell moms or dads who think they don’t have time to prepare their own baby food? The real key to success is finding a cooking/freezing rhythm that works for you and your family. Once every two weeks, I prepare baby food for about an hour to an hour and a half and when I’m done I have enough of a freezer stockpile to last for about two weeks. At the end of two weeks, I’d do it all over again. That’s it—one to one and a half hours every two weeks. 

What are the 3 most exotic babyfood dishes you’ve prepared?  Pureed vegetable curry, Vietnamese Pho, and kimchi pancakes.

Wanna share a recipe? One pot ratatouille!


Years and years ago, I found a food grinder that my mom and dad sometimes used to make our baby food.  It warmed my heart to know that our folks didn't always just feed us out of a jar.

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