Prunes: No longer just for your grandmother.Posted: April 4, 2011
When I think prunes, I think Granny. She always used to keep them around, along with prune juice, and when I was a child she would talk to me in a little too much detail about WHY she needed to eat them regularly (hee hee…regular). I miss her dearly and think about her all the time. And it’s not the big events in my life she was part of that I remember the most, it’s all the little things, like prunes, and her tendency to talk about her GI tract, that made her the amazing/crazy/remarkable woman that she was. So this prune boil is dedicated to you Granny, in all seriousness. I know you’re watching me with pride as I cook for your great grandson.
As an adult, I actually like prunes. In moderation. Like, three or four a week, max. They are deliciously sweet and incredibly good for you. Full of potassium and fiber and antioxidants. “Cooking for Baby” thinks so too, as it’s one of the fruits to introduce after 6 months.
Speaking of “Cooking for Baby”, we have now successfully eaten all of the recommended 4-6 months foods with the exception of barley and millet. Millet, because it’s not at my local grocery store and I haven’t made it to Whole Foods in a while, and barley because I just haven’t gotten around to cooking it yet. That’s what I’ll write about next, introducing new grains. Simon has now eaten: rice, oatmeal, zucchini, butternut squash, sweet potato, peas, avocado, pear, apple, banana and carrots. Whether or not he wants to eat these on any given night is a crapshoot, but he’s not allergic and has enthusiastically eaten significant quantities of each in the past. Now that he is turning 6 months (OH MY GOD WHERE DID THE TIME GO?!?) I am moving into the next chapter, 7-9 months.
I was pleasantly surprised to find these preservative free prunes in the regular grocery store. I think they’re new.
I first put the prunes in a pot and put enough water in the pot to cover them. I brought them to a boil, lowered the heat, and let them simmer for about 5 minutes until I could just slide a fork into the prunes.
I then took them off the heat and let them cool for about twenty minutes. At this point they look like a bunch of brown turds in brown water. See:
I’m right, right? Yum….
So I took the prunes out with a slotted spoon and dropped them in the blender and gave it a whirl. I needed to add a bit of the cooking liquid to loosen up the puree. I ended up with this:
…an ugly, spotted, purplish-brown puree that I poured into an ice cube tray. What you cant get from the photos though is that my whole kitchen was filled with this warm, sweet, delicious aroma, kind of like molasses, that I stood around inhaling in deep breaths as it boiled. And despite the fact that it resembled…well…YOU know…it was actually DELICIOUS! OK, so I taste everything before I feed it to Simon (duh), and when I dipped my finger in this doubtful looking puree and hesitantly put it in my mouth I was astonished by the mild, sweet flavor. I mean, REALLY good! Note: if you really dislike prunes, it still tasted like prunes. But if you’re open to something new and have never tried prunes, I’d give it a shot. I also think the puree I kept defrosted in the refrigerator to feed to him that night tasted even better once it was cold.
As far as introducing them to Simon goes, I’m taking it slowly to avoid the, ahem, negative effects of prunes. He had about a teaspoon mixed into his butternut squash/oatmeal combo last night, and everything was fine today, so we’ll try a bit more tonight.
I also froze the leftover boiling liquid into cubes. This can be mixed into his juice, etc, whenever he starts drinking it at a later date. It also tastes a HELL of a lot better than the prune juice you buy at the store (YUCK!). I like prunes, but prune bottled prune juice….uugggh. So waste not, want not, we have 4 prune juice cubes in the freezer now!