Have you ever wondered how to make your own baby food? I found myself thinking the same thing last week when we started Sofia on solids. Some people will tell you to wait til at least 6 months, and if your baby has been content on breastmilk or formula alone, then I also think it's best to wait. Sofia, though, is about four and a half months old and was already tugging and biting at my boob, trying to hold her own bottle, staring longingly into our eyes as we ate our people-food and waking up in the middle of the night (when she's slept the night through since 4 weeks). We knew something was going on. Luckily, we got the OK from our awesome doctor to start solid food and I just so happened to have this amazing book from my cousin Jill.
We started Sofia with a simple, organic short grain rice (she hated it), so we have slowly been introducing simple purees. Slowly being the key word, here; you're always going to want to wait around 3-4 days between introducing new foods to double check there are no allergies. Another trick I found was to mix a food I knew she liked with the rice cereal to help her learn to like the taste of it. Now, we mix her rice cereal with bananas and it's like she has loved it all along. I have a recipe for the banana-rice cereal too, but let's start with the sweet potato. Here we go.
You'll want to start off with one medium sized sweet potato, unless you're cooking in bulk for the week. One medium potato yields around 7 individual servings. I purchased my potatoes from the farmers market up in Andersonville, but anywhere you can find great organic for a good price is completely up to you!
Wash and scrub your potatoes vigorously for a few minutes and poke some holes around them. I usually run them under the water one more time after I've poked holes because the extra water inside creates steam and helps them cook easier.
Preheat your oven to 400º and wrap your potato in foil. Put the potato (or potatoes) on the bottom rack and let sit for around an hour. Once done, unwrap the foil and scoop out the potato (no skins!) into a blender with a little hot water, breastmilk, or whichever baby-safe liquid you'd prefer. The final step is to puree to a consistency your baby is comfortable with.