Saturday, July 28, 2012

Baby Kale Mash - CSA Kale Baby Food Puree

After three weeks straight getting Kale in our CSA box, and not doing anything with it, I was getting desperate. So I sorted out the Dino Kale and larger green and purple leaves for Honey Kale Chips, and turned the rest into baby mash!

The recipe is fairly simple. Wash, cut, microwave, mash.
After rinsing the leaves and leaving the water on them, I mostly separated the stems, but I chopped them small and tossed them back in with the leaves to cook. (I only did a quick rinse, since my Kale was all organic. I didn't feel I needed to scrub each leaf or anything. Just wash off the dirt and slugs or whatever!)
I'm not sure how much I had overall, but my ceramic crock pot crock was pretty full. I had to press it down to get the plate on top to microwave. 7 minutes per pound of Kale, so I just did 7 minutes.

After it was steamed, I tossed it all (with any remaining water from the pot - it's filled with vitamins that leeched out of the leaves) into my food processor, and churned it up.
You can see how chunky and fibrous it is
Since I had over two bunches worth, I chopped, cooked, and mashed up most of the green Kale first, then portioned it out into the freezer tray. Then I did the purple Kale that hadn't been used for Kale chips in a second batch.
The bottom row looks a little different. It's the purple/green mix
The bunches were nowhere near comparable in size to one another, so I'm not sure if what I used for mash would be the equivalent to two bunches at the grocery, or three. Either way, it made over 30 ounces (21 1-ounce freezer portions, roughly another 8 ounces for the smoothies, and still a little Take-N-Toss bowl full of extras.)

The Kale Mash wasn't as mashery as the Bok Choy. Much more fibrous and less of a creamy texture. Baby E liked the flavor, but had a hard time eating it. I mixed it with some store-bought puree and it was a little easier for her to swallow. She ended up spitting most of it back up though, as far as we could tell. She was urping it up for a while after. So I'll save it for a month and try her on it again.

In the meantime, I used roughly a cup or more of the puree in some fruit smoothies. I didn't even have to rinse out the Cuisinart! I just scooped out as much as would fit in a freezer tray, and kept the rest in the food processor and added the smoothie ingredients. I also added some to pureed squash and some curry spices to try her on soon...

You can also just make this - cooked or not - and puree it up and freeze into cubes to have on-hand to toss into smoothies or tomato sauce to add some extra nutrients. (For baby you want cooked. They shouldn't have uncooked greens until after 10 months, or when your pediatrician recommends.)


  1. What do you do for smoothies for them to eat? I know that you portion them out and freeze them, but what after? Do you give them to your girls as-is? Defrost them a little? Or do you use them for the ice in smoothies and blend them with other stuff?

    1. Depends. I toss a few into the food processor with the fruit and yogurt for smoothies, but my processor hates ice. And frozen bananas. So I have to pulse and pause for a while, until they thaw enough to make my processor happy.

      For the baby, I'd mix a cube of this with a few cubes of squash or peas or blueberries or cherry, and add seasoning (cinnamon for apple, pumpkin or sweet potato, mint or cumin for peas, and turmeric, paprika and/or cumin for the other savory veggies.)(Ratio 1 kale to 2-3 other. Sometimes I'd mix it up with oatmeal or some of our food I'd whizzed up and frozen for her too.)


Go ahead! Tell me how awesome I am. Or ask a question. Whatever.

(Please note that I had to disable Anonymous comments. Too many spam comments coming through the filters.)