Phew! I’ve done this whole weaning before, I know it works. Still there are moments of doubt.
I persist, and most times a little food goes in, every few days finding something he genuinely is interested in. Like with all things baby, no two are the same – Dom ate noisy slurping fistfuls of porridge by this age, Theo passively watches us eat breakfast (it seems Dominic is my son when it comes to the most important meal of the day, and Theo firmly Mark’s).
Some days he ignores what’s in front of him, others he prefers the bowl to the contents. But today, at lunchtime he ate a whole mini burger, and some wholewheat pitta on the side. I squished it down a bit then he patiently scooped up pieces. He spent the longest time eating I’ve ever seen, returning to the plate again and again. I can see his methods improving too – a flat palm on the food, a fist clenched, then turned and opened flat against his mouth, or sometimes using his other hand to pick pieces out of the proffered palm.
I say burger – I mean kidney bean & walnut burger. Inspired by an online buddy I went searching for veggie burger recipes yesterday. My imminent return to work means we need to get more organised in terms of meal planning – this recipe makes the cut!
The blog I got these from – The ‘V’ Word – has excellent tips for making veggie burgers in general. Anyone who’s tried will know it can be difficult to get the consistency right and to stop them crumbling on the pan. Worth bookmarking for that section alone! Below is the recipe using my adjustments.
400g tin kidney beans, drained and rinsed
1 small red onion, shredded & squeezed dry
1 small carrot, grated
2 scallions, finely chopped
1/3 cup chopped walnuts – chop really finely for baby
1/2 tsp. black pepper, or to taste
1/2 tsp ground cumin
1/2 tsp ground coriander
Some cayenne pepper, to taste
1 Tbs. soya sauce
½ cup wholewheat bread crumbs
1 Tbs. rapeseed oil
Smash beans in a bowl with a fork until slightly chunky. Add the onion, carrot, scallions, walnuts, all the herbs & spices and soya sauce and mix well until all the ingredients are incorporated. Skip the nuts if you haven’t tried them with your little one yet and you have a family history of nut allergies. If not, go right ahead and put them in there. I picked larger bits out of T’s just because I forgot to chop them finely enough.
Add the bread crumbs little by little while mixing with your hands until you have the desired consistency. The mixture should feel firm and stick together well. Refrigerate the whole mixture in the bowl for at least 30 minutes.
Form the patties using your hands or a scone cutter. This made 4 medium and 4 kid size burgers (the recipe states it makes 4 large)
Heat the oil in a large non stick pan over medium-high heat. Add the patties and cook until browned on each side. Each side may need about 5 minutes. You may need to flip the burgers carefully several times to ensure the inside gets cooked while the outside doesn’t burn.
Serve in wholewheat pitta with some mashed avocado or your favourite burger toppings.