I was thinking about all the recipes I normally use for my daughter, and I realized that the majority of my inspiration comes from one book. So, I thought I would give the author props and do a book review! I do not know or have any affiliation with her, and this is only coming from my opinion.
When my daughter was born, I received a tip from some mamas at diaperswappers.com regarding making your own baby food. They said to read the book, Super Baby Food by Ruth Yaron. So, I checked it out, and WHOA! It blew me away.
This book is basically everything you wanted to know that your grandmother did as a young mom and never got around to telling you. It is broken into 5 sections: Feeding Your Super Baby, Preparation and Storage of Super Baby Food, Toddler Recipes, Fun Stuff, and Reference and Appendices.
The first section goes over facts and info about feeding your baby month by month, what and when and how to introduce solids, and introduces the Super Baby Food diet, a diet based on only whole and natural foods. The second section discusses all the food groups as well as how to prepare all of these foods in bulk and store them to make it very easy to manage. Ruth explains many freezing methods of single servings of food, including the infamous ice cube tray method (freezing pureed foods in ice cube trays, then popping them out and storing them in a freezer container). She also stresses the importance of whole grains and making what she calls "super porridge," which, I will admit, as much as I tried to make it and get my baby to eat it, I just couldn't get it thin and smooth enough for her not to gag (but she did have a lot of gagging problems in the first year of life). The third section consists not only of toddler recipes, but of recipes my husband will eat as well! Only if he doesn't know what is in them, of course. :-) The fourth section describes many different arts and crafts and frugal projects to do with your toddler with materials right at home. There are some pretty creative ideas in there that I would have never thought to make! The last section is a great list of references that I keep coming back to time and time again. Ruth includes a complete list of fruits and veggies, how to tell when they are fresh, the best way to prepare them, etc...This section also includes a baby nutrient table and measurement equivalents, green cleaning products, etc...
If you haven't already bought this book, and you are looking for good reference material to have handy at home, buy this book. Granted, there were some things in the book that failed for me, and there are some ideas that I just can't see myself doing (like making my own sticker glue for stickers). But the benefits of this book FAR exceed expectations.
Not only that, but there is now a Super Baby Food website. Check it out if you are interested!