Thursday, December 13, 2012

Adventures in solids: Carrots & Sweet potato

After trying green beans, squash and oatmeal I decided to give carrots a try, then apples and sweet potato. I will put up a separate post about the apples.  Both the carrots and sweet potato purees were pretty straight forward and uneventful which is why I decided to blog about both of them in one post.

With both carrots & sweet potato I had the option of baking them in the oven, which is probably the best way of cooking them as all the nutrients are retained that way. However I sometimes don't have the patience for cooking in the oven and don't have a large enough steamer to steam them all, so I decided to boil them in a tiny bit of water.  I prepped them by peeling and washing them and then putting them in a pan to boil.  Carrots contain nitrates which can be released into the water when boiled, so I made sure to pour away all the water once they were cooked and not use the water to thin the puree. With other veggies its okay to save the stock water you cooked them in and use that to thin the puree, but it is not recommended for carrots.  For this reason my carrot puree was extremely thick!! I could have added regular water but for some reason this completely escaped my mind at the time.  Instead I added the tiny bit of breast milk that I had available but it didn't make much of a difference. The puree was so thick it was hard to get it in to the ice cube tray, I definitely should have added more breast milk to it, to get it a bit thinner but I felt too lazy at the time to get out the breast pump.  I was quite surprised at how bright and orange it was, it stained the tray for a while as well as her spoons and bowls.  If I hadn't made this puree myself I would have been convinced that some food coloring was added to it!

Carrot puree ready to be frozen

The sweet potato was much the same, I peeled and boiled it but since this was two weeks after making the carrot puree, I had learnt my lesson and I used a bit of the stock water to thin it, so it wasn't too thick. It turned out really smooth and creamy, so I decided not to add any breast milk to it.  The only thing is that it was really hard to get out of the ice cube trays once it was frozen. Most likely because I overfilled the trays this time.  The sweet potato puree actually tasted really good and she loved eating it, as did I!


The confusing thing about sweet potato is how a lot of people call them yams. When I went out to buy these the sign said "yams" but I knew darn well that these were sweet potatoes. I guess here in America the term yam is used interchangeably with sweet potato which is really confusing for some of us! I later found an explanation about this on wholesomebabyfood. A yam is actually a completely different root tuber, I know this for a fact because we have yams locally grown all over west Africa where I have my roots {pun intended}  The photo below shows the difference between the two.

Yam on the left and sweet potato on the right



  1. weird that they get called yams. is it maybe a North American thing?

    Love the adventures in your solid foods!

  2. Thanks Marian, I think it is an american thing to call them yams!