Friday, November 28, 2008

Sweet Potatoes or Squash (variations)

Sweet potatoes are an easy dish to prepare, make variations of, and freeze/store. It is also one of the less messy ones to feed, especially for toddlers learning to self feed.

You can bake sweet potatoes in the oven, but I generally just punch a few holes in them with a fork and pop in the microwave (on a plate). I use the potato setting which usually senses when the potato is done, although it is usually a few minutes short of being truly done.

The sweet potatoes stay pretty hot for a while, so it is best to let them cool for a little bit before trying to remove the skin. Usually I can just peel off the skin, but you can also scoop out the sweet potato with a spoon.

I mash the sweet potato with any of the following -
- ginger powder (fantastic for digestion, and it tastes great), cinnamon, nutmeg, etc.
- butter
- oranges (you can use mandarin oranges if that is easier)
- apples (cooked, or applesauce)
My most popular recipe is to add organic butter and some ginger - and that includes for myself and my husband, not just the little one!

I generally always just mash with a fork and I'm set to go, although if you use cooked apples you may want to mince or mash, depending on what your child can chew. If you feel the potatoes need to be watered down, you can add water, but I prefer fruit juice. Then it's right into small jars or bowls for storing in the freezer.

You can also use squashes instead of sweet potatoes - such as acorn squash, butternut, etc. Cascadian Farms makes a box of frozen winter squash that is great for a quick meal - I simply thaw/heat (I take it out of the plastic and put it in a glass bowl), and add some spices, and my little girl loves it!

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