You begin by making purees, a few at a time. Divide each into potions and freeze them for use in the recipes.
For apples, berries, cantaloupe, cherries and pineapple, just wash, cut the fruit and puree in a food processor or blender for about 2 minutes. (Instead of fresh berries, cherries, or pineapple, you can use frozen or canned without syrup.)
For avocados and bananas, all that is necessary to make the purees is to mash them well until they are smooth and then puree in a food processor or blender for about 2 minutes.
For beets, leave them whole, wrap them in foil and roast at 400°F (200°C) for 1 hour or until they can be pierced with the tip of a sharp knife. Peel and puree in a food processor or blender for about 2 minutes.
Sweet potatoes can be prepared just like beets or steamed. Broccoli, cauliflower, carrots, peas, bell peppers, spinach and zucchini and summer squash can all be steamed too. Prepare each of these veggies as listed below and steam them for the appropriate length of time. When cooked, puree them in a food processor or blender for 2 minutes or until smooth and creamy (add a few teaspoons of water if necessary to get the right texture).
- Cut broccoli in florets and steam for 6-7 minutes, only until bright green (olive green is over-cooked).
- Cut cauliflower into florets and discard the core. Steam for 8-10 minutes.
- Peel, trim, and cut carrots into 3 inch (7.5cm) chunks and steam for 10-12 minutes.
- Just steam frozen peas for 2 minutes and only 1/2-1 minute for thawed peas.
- Cut bell peppers in half, remove the stem, seeds, and white membrane. Steam for 10-12 minutes.
- For baby spinach there is no preparation needed before steaming. For mature spinach, fold the leaves in half lengthwise with the stem outside. Then strip the stem off the leaf. Steam for 30-40 seconds, or cook in a skillet with 1 tablespoon (15 cc) of water for about 90 seconds, or just until wilted.
- Zucchini and summer squash just need the ends trimmed off and cut into 1 inch (2.5cm) pieces. Steam for 6-8 minutes.
All of these veggies can be cooked in a microwave oven with a little water and covered loosely with microwave-safe plastic wrap or lid or waxed paper. Since every microwave is different, you will need to experiment with the length of time for cooking each vegetable.
Let the warm purees cool and package them in either 1/4 cup (60cc) or 1/2 cup (120cc) portions. These can be refrigerated in small sandwich bags to use within a few days or frozen in freezer bags for longer storage. Be sure to label each bag with the fruit or vegetable, the amount, and the date. Use the oldest first.
When ready to use, thaw frozen purees in a microwave or bowl of hot water until soft. Snip the corner of the bag and squeeze out this instant nutrition boost to any of these recipes or to store-bought sauces.