Getting the tools and ingredients out to cook for your child at every meal can be tiring, especially when the portion you’re cooking is smaller than your fist. The simple solution, of course, would be to cook by bulk. But, how do you handle your child’s food storage? Here are a few tips.
1. Keeping solid food in the Refrigerator
The fridge is a wonderful invention for keeping stuff fresh, including last week’s tuna sandwich. It is also a great tool for preparing food in advance, as they won’t go bad quite as fast. You can either prepare your child’s food in small single servings, or have a big container where you can take the day’s portion out of. Single servings in containers will be easier to identify, as you can label them by date and recipe. If you’re using a big container, never leave your spoon inside, as it’ll collect bacteria. Use a clean spoon to take out the day’s portion.
Most pureed foods will last up to 48 hours in a fridge.
2. Freezing food in an ice cube tray
Freezing food helps preserve the food way longer than refrigeration. Plus, food storage through freezing allows you to better plan and portion food through a long period. Now, instead of just tossing whatever you’ve prepared into the freezer, you can use the ice cube tray. Unless you have a really old fridge or you somehow lost yours, most freezers have an ice cube tray. The benefits? Your little one’s food will be evenly portioned and easy to calculate and divide. Label some freezer bags, pop your puree ice cubes into the bags and keep them frozen until you need them at the next feeding time. Voila, you’re done!
3. Thawing food for Your Child
The next step in food storage is actually thawing it or warming it for your child to eat. You can place frozen food into a bowl, cover with cling wrap and place in the fridge overnight to melt.
If you’re short on time, one of the quickest ways to do this is the microwave. However, you’ll want to be careful, as microwaving food can create hot spots that you won’t notice. Microwaving also heats the food real fast, so it may become boiling soup instead of a warm puree. Stir and rotate the food; more importantly, ensure the food is at room temperature before serving.
You can also give the food a water bath. Place the bags of frozen cubes in warm water for it to thaw before putting in a bowl to serve.
Solid food storage isn’t too difficult; you just have to keep these tips in mind. Use the fridge for the short term, the freezer for the long term. Warm food carefully and always test the temperature before feeding.
If you need some puree recipes, download your own personalised CERELAC Recipe e-Booklet. It has lots of fun recipes and a meal plan for your child. Or watch Malaysian MasterChef Dr. Ezani create wonderful dishes for your child here.
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