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Posts tagged ‘nutmeg’

Parsnip Yogurt Mezze – Baby-led Weaning

This baby-led weaning recipe is simply delicious, flavoursome and perfect for babies from the age of 7 months – once first tastes and flavours have been accepted, and baby is comfortable with finger foods.

With four unique flavours blended together – nutmeg, garlic, black pepper and yogurt, this mezze will be a real treat. Similar to Greek tzatziki, this gorgeous, creamy, calcium-rich mezze will add lots of aromatic flavour to some soft finger foods. Very soft pitta (helps if you slice in it half to make it super thin), or very soft bread.

Total prep and cooking time: 15 mins
Makes 13 ice-cubes

1 tbsp olive oil
¼ tsp minced garlic
1 parsnip – washed, peeled, cored, chopped
1 sweet apple – washed, peeled, cored, chopped
1 tbsp full-fat Greek yogurt
Pinch of ground nutmeg
Pinch of ground black pepper

Heat the olive oil in a saucepan, add the garlic, parsnip and apple and sauté on low heat for a few minutes, then add 2 tablespoons of water and let the apple and parsnip steam (covered) for 5–8 minutes (depending on the thickness of the pieces) until they are both tender.

Once tender, pop into a food processor (or use a handheld blender) and blend until smooth. Add the yogurt, nutmeg and black pepper and combine well. Spread thinly over a very soft pitta slice (once your child has mastered soft finger foods) and cut into strips for your little one. Add more or less to a pitta slice depending on your little one’s taste buds.


This recipe is taken from The Flavour-led Weaning Cookbook, available to order now from all good bookshops including Amazon.co.uk, WHSmith and Waterstones. Also available from Amazon.com.

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Top 5 Spices to Combat Teething Pains – Part 2

In Part 1 I highlighted my Top 5 Spices which all possess their own unique properties to help combat teething pains. Some of which are widely used within dentistry!

However in Part 2, I wanted to share a simple, yummy recipe with you which not only has oodles of taste (courtesy of the flavour enhancing spices), it also uses a combination of spices from my Top 5 to help towards providing some pain relief for your little one.  So give this one a go!

Spicy Sweet Potato Fries (V) — Stage 2: 7 months plus

finger food sweet potato fries

 

If your poor little one is teething, this tasty snack may help to sooth those uncomfortable symptoms. The nutmeg not only provides a warm, spicy taste to complement the sweet potato, it also contains the compound ‘eugenol’, which is used as a natural medicine to treat toothaches. Combined with the powerful analgesic properties of cinnamon, this is a wonderful snack to combat teething pains.

SuperFoods included: olive oil, sweet potato
SuperSpices included: cinnamon, nutmeg

Total preparation and cooking time: 25mins
Makes 2 servings

½ tbsp olive oil
¼ tsp ground cinnamon
Pinch of ground nutmeg
1 small sweet potato — peeled, washed, cut into 2” sticks

Pre-heat the oven to 200C/400F/gas 6.

In a bowl add the oil, cinnamon, nutmeg and stir. Add the potato sticks to the bowl and give it a good toss to coat them with the seasoning. Lay them flat on a foil-covered baking tray and place on the middle shelf. Bake for 20-25mins or until tender, turning over half way. Allow cooling before serving to baby.

Hardcover front coverYou can find more delicious weaning and finger food recipes in Easy Indian SuperMeals for Babies, Toddlers and the Family available to buy now from Amazon, Waterstones or my online shop for signed copies.

Top 5 Spices to Combat Teething Pains – Part 1

baby

Being a mother I totally understand how difficult it is when your little one starts teething. It can be very distressing to see your little one in so much pain! I remember feeling completely helpless and wished that I could take the pain away, not to mention the sleepless nights that follow… (I was on autopilot for the next year!)

So the very next day I went on a BIG TEETHING SHOPPING SPREE!

  • Teething toys
  • Teething gels
  • Teething granules
  • Children’s medicines

You name it, I tried it… anything to provide some sort of comfort or pain relief for my little one.

Although I used all of these methods (not all at the same time!) usually a combination of them i.e. teething toy and teething gel, I still wanted to do more. So I turned my attention to spices.

Being from Indian origin meant that I already cooked with spices, but spices can be used for more than adding flavour to meals, they have also been used for their medicinal properties for generations, and many of them have been proven to contain natural analgesic properties to help combat pain.

After a period of months researching aromatic spices and their natural health benefits, I began to understand which spices would be of most benefit to my little one, and began including various combinations within my little one’s meals in the hope that they would provide an extra little boost of pain relief (in addition to the traditional methods I had spent a fortune on). Every little helps right?!

So here are my TOP 5 SPICES TO COMBAT TEETHING PAINS:

Cloves

1. Cloves – dried flower buds of a tropical tree. They contain the compound ‘eugenol’, a powerful oil widely used within dentistry for natural oral pain relief. It is also used to add flavour to sweet and savoury cuisines worldwide.

Nutmeg
2. Nutmeg – another spice which contains the oil eugenol. It offers a warm and spicy taste to meals and  compliments both sweet and savoury dishes.

Cardamom pods
3. Cardamom – a flavourful spice commonly used within Indian cookery. Its analgesic properties can help to reduce pain in teeth and gums. It is also believed to cleanse the mouth for good oral hygiene.

Cinnamon

4. Cinnamon– A warm, fragrant spice with a hint of sweetness. Great for cooking with, baking with or sprinkling onto fruit – apples and bananas. Contains a natural analgesic property to soothe pains.

Black Peppercorns
5. Black Pepper
– a common seasoning found in virtually every household. It too contains analgesic properties to help relieve pain in teeth and gums, and is believed to promote strong teeth.

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A comprehensive list of resources, references and links to support the above statements can be found within Indian SuperMeals: Baby & Toddler Cookbook.
Indian SuperMeals: Baby & Toddler Cookbook is available to buy now for your smartphone, tablet or desktop from Amazon.co.ukAutharium.com, iTunes/ iBooks, Waterstones.com, WHSmith.co.uk and other online retailers. Prices vary.

Also available to buy from Amazon.com.

 

Important: None of the above spices should be applied directly to soft oral tissue; they should all be used within cooking. Spices are suitable for babies from 7 months onwards.

References

Ahmed, ZJ. 2012. Indian SuperMeals: Baby & Toddler Cookbook. London: Autharium

Baby Photo Credit: Mommy Page