Spiced lentil coconut puree

Spiced lentil coconut puree | Me & The Moose. This homemade baby puree is a full meal for older babies, a hearty toddler snack in a pouch or as a dip with crackers and carrots, or thinned out with stock for a kid and grownup soup. #meandthemoose #soup #puree #lentils #coconut #chicken #uniquebabypuree #homemadebabyfood #proteinforkids

What a year it's been: There were some highs and some very low lows, but I'm feeling pretty grateful on this New Year's Day. I'm also glad that we have a do-over tomorrow because I already broke some of my resolutions, one of which was to post things in a more timely fashion...

I read a few years ago that eating lentils on January 1st is considered good luck in Italy and Brazil because the roundness of the lentils symbolizes money. Ha! We won't be eating any lentils this year because our Whole 30 started today, which will get its very own post tomorrow. But M will be eating them! This puree is delicious and based on one of my all-time favorite lentil soups. It includes a lot of different spices, so if you want to tone it down a bit, feel free to choose one or two. (Tumeric, thyme, and cinnamon are the heavy hitters, but if I had to choose one, I'd go with thyme. Or tumeric. It's hard to pick.)

This is a gigantic recipe, so if you don't plan to freeze all or part of it, make half. However, it freezes well and also tastes amazing thinned out with chicken stock as a pureed soup.

Spiced lentil coconut puree | Me & The Moose. This homemade baby puree is a full meal for older babies, a hearty toddler snack in a pouch or as a dip with crackers and carrots, or thinned out with stock for a kid and grownup soup. #meandthemoose #soup #puree #lentils #coconut #chicken #uniquebabypuree #homemadebabyfood #proteinforkids

Spiced lentil and coconut puree

Adapted from A Beautiful Plate (Seriously, make this soup)
1 large cooked sweet potato (about 10 oz)
1 cup dry Green lentils (about two cups cooked)
2.5 cups water
4 oz cooked chicken
1 cup coconut milk
1 cup water
1 tsp thyme
1/2 tsp turmeric
1/4 tsp coriander
1/2 tsp cinnamon
Pinch nutmeg
Pinch cloves

Preheat oven to 400. Wash, dry, and using a paring knife, poke lots of holes in a large sweet potato. Roast until tender, about 40 minutes. Alternatively, you can microwave your potato for 8-10 minutes on high covered with a wet paper towel. Here is a great guide to cooking times for different sweets and yams.

While the potatoes are cooking, sort and rinse the lentils. Combine lentils and water and bring to a boil over high heat. Reduce heat to low and simmer, covered, until water is absorbed and lentils are tender, about 35 minutes. Alternatively, you can cheat and use 2 cups of Trader Joe’s precooked lentils like I do sometimes.

When the lentils and sweet potatoes are cooked, combine them in the blender with 4 oz of cooked chicken. I use leftovers or a combination of light and dark meat from a rotisserie. Add the coconut milk, water, and spices and blend until you've reached your desired consistency. This tends to be a thick puree, so don’t be shy with adding water or stock later to thin it out a bit more.

Yield: 4.5 cups or 40 oz

Spiced lentil coconut puree | Me & The Moose. This homemade baby puree is a full meal for older babies, a hearty toddler snack in a pouch or as a dip with crackers and carrots, or thinned out with stock for a kid and grownup soup. #meandthemoose #soup #puree #lentils #coconut #chicken #uniquebabypuree #homemadebabyfood #proteinforkids

Candy corn popsicles

The colors of candy corn, but none of the preservatives. Candy corn popsicles | Me & the Moose #meandthemoose #candycorn #popsicles #puree #coconut #sweetpotato #pear #turmeric

These treats resemble candy corn in color, but not in taste. Because candy corn is disgusting.

The colors of candy corn, but none of the preservatives. Candy corn popsicles | Me & the Moose #meandthemoose #candycorn #popsicles #puree #coconut #sweetpotato #pear #turmeric

However, candy corn says "childhood autumn" for me like nothing else. Mostly because we didn't have cider donuts or pumpkin spice anything back then. Dark times.

The colors of candy corn, but none of the preservatives. Candy corn popsicles | Me & the Moose #meandthemoose #candycorn #popsicles #puree #coconut #sweetpotato #pear #turmeric

These fruit and vegetable purees/pops are packed with seasonal flavors while also being light and refreshing since it was 80 degrees in New York last week. Also, it's always teething season in our house, so these pops are a handy way to soothe the savage beast while also getting some vitamins and good fats into him. These purees are delicious on their own, but especially when combined.

Spices like cinnamon, coriander, ginger, and turmeric make these frozen candy corn-inspired treats so much better than the original. Candy corn popsicles | Me & the Moose #meandthemoose #candycorn #popsicles #puree #coconut #sweetpotato #pear

Banana, coconut milk, and cinnamon puree (White)

Whelp, I thought I was being creative here and then I found this puree on Baby Foodie when I was searching for a different recipe. Credit where it's due: I'm sure this puree was rattling around in my brain because I saw it there originally. It's great! The author recommends microwaving the banana, but I didn't and it was fine. It also froze well. I recommend doubling Baby Foodie's recipe and using the blender for these pops.

 

Sweet potato, coconut milk, and coriander puree (Orange)

Also from Baby Foodie, this combination was one of M's very favorites when he was still eating exclusively purees. For these pops, I used a ratio of 1 cup coconut milk to 1 sweet potato, which is significantly more liquid than is called for in the original recipe, but works in these pops. I used 1 large sweet potato, 1 cup coconut milk, and 1/4 tsp coriander.

 

Pear, apple, ginger, and turmeric puree (Yellow)

2 small or medium pears, peeled
1 large apple, peeled
1/8 tsp ground ginger
1/8 tsp turmeric

Peel the apple and pears, if desired (though if you leave the peel on, you may not get a uniform yellow color). In a steamer basket over boiling water, steam apple chunks for 5 minutes. Add pears and steam for 5 more minutes. Let cool slightly. Combine fruit and spices in a blender and process to desired consistency.

The colors of candy corn, but none of the preservatives. Candy corn popsicles | Me & the Moose #meandthemoose #candycorn #popsicles #puree #coconut #sweetpotato #pear #turmeric

Combine purees in a tall pop mold starting with the coconut, banana, and cinnamon puree. I was too lazy to freeze them in stages, but if you're more precise than I am, you could freeze the white puree for 30 minutes before adding the sweet potatoes to achieve a cleaner color barrier. But, meh.

Yield: 4 double pops (like those pictured) or 8 single pops
 

The colors of candy corn, but none of the preservatives. Candy corn popsicles | Me & the Moose #meandthemoose #candycorn #popsicles #puree #coconut #sweetpotato #pear #turmeric