Fresh Start

There’s a problem with baby food, and the solution is growing in your own back yard.

By Katie Walker

Photography by John Lee


Roasted salmon and a vegetable-based risotto is a wonderful combination.The irony is that many of the reasons new parents have for not making their own baby food are actually reasons to do it. Time is often the first complaint, followed quickly by money. However, just a half-hour of steaming and blending can result in 20 baby-sized servings that can be frozen and reheated later. And when food that the baby can eat is incorporated into the family meal, as Florence recommends, it adds minimal time to cooking that is already in progress.

Gardeners know that the cost of growing produce is tiny compared to purchasing the same items in a grocery store. The same goes for baby food. One of Florence’s first recipes is a simple Sweet Potato Puree. The pound of sweet potatoes that Florence uses to make four 4-ounce servings costs less than a dollar. To buy four 4-ounce jars of name-brand sweet potato puree, at $.59 each, costs $2.36. With babies consuming about five to seven jars of food per day, the numbers quickly add up. And the good news for parents who garden? They’ll save even more.

Florence sums it up best when he says, “As a chef and father of three, cooking for my children means more than just going through the motions of getting dinner on the table. It’s about forging the foundation for a healthy relationship with food that will last for the rest of their lives.”

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