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Baby Love: Healthy, Easy, Delicious Meals for Your Baby and Toddler Hardcover – August 31, 2010

4.4 out of 5 stars 99 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

About the Author

NORAH O'DONNELL is chief Washington correspondent and anchor for MSNBC, an Emmy Award--winning correspondent for NBC, and a contributing correspondent for NBC's Today Show. She has served as White House correspondent for NBC News, reporting for Nightly News, Today, and MSNBC.

GEOFF TRACY graduated first in his class from the Culinary Institute of America. He opened his first two restaurants before the age of thirty. He currently owns and operates five successful restaurants in the nation's capital. In 2008 Tracy was awarded the Albert Uster Chef of the Year Award. He is best known as Chef Geoff.

Both authors are graduates of Georgetown University. As a married couple, they live in Washington, D.C., with their three young children.

Excerpt. © Reprinted by permission. All rights reserved.

Baby Love - Chapter 1Getting Started

Babies are ready to begin eating solid foods at four to six months of age. At this time almost all babies can learn to eat from a spoon. Most start with rice cereal mixed with breast milk or formula.

If all is going well, check with your pediatrician about beginning to feed your munchkin simple pureed fruits or vegetables. Some pediatricians recommend you start with vegetables first to avoid developing a sweet tooth. However, the American Academy of Pediatrics states that “there is no evidence that your baby will develop a dislike for vegetables if fruit is given first. Babies are born with a preference for sweets, and the order of introducing foods does not change this.”

New foods should be introduced one at a time. Wait at least two to three days before starting another to make sure your child is not allergic. Watch for any allergic reactions such as diarrhea, rash, or vomiting. Once, our son, Henry, broke out in a facial rash. We called the doctor, who suggested it might be the tomatoes in the Bolognese! Sometimes infants don’t like the acidity in tomatoes. The lesson: stop the food and then check with your doctor about the reaction.

We also made the decision to introduce new foods at breakfast or lunchtime rather than at dinnertime. In case the twins got a tummyache or gas at least it was during the day. You don’t want a gassy baby keeping you up all night!

Within a few months of starting purees, your baby should be enjoying all sorts of fruits, vegetables, and meats. You know the saying, “Variety is the spice of life!” There is no better time to introduce these healthy foods.

BABY LOVE. Copyright © 2010 by Norah O’Donnell and Chef Geoff Tracy. All rights reserved.


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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 160 pages
  • Publisher: St. Martin's Griffin (August 31, 2010)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0312621922
  • ISBN-13: 978-0312621926
  • Product Dimensions: 8.3 x 0.6 x 8.3 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.4 pounds
  • Average Customer Review: 4.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (99 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #383,460 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Hardcover Vine Customer Review of Free Product ( What's this? )
Once upon a time I was a 20-year-old stay-at-home mommy terrified of raising my baby wrong. Cloth diapers meant horrid diaper rash. Not breastfeeding was a mortal sin. Feeding your baby the same foods you ate meant they might have a fatal allergic reaction. Fast forward ten years and while my first born is certainly not malnourished... he's not the best eater. Sniff a jar of baby veggies and you might be able to guess why.

The idea of making my own baby food from scratch was one I knew I wanted to do before I was even pregnant with baby #2. A book I purchased about feeding toddlers when #1 was little has lingered in my cookbook collection for years. The first few sections focused on baby food & purees so I knew it was possible. I researched making my own baby food a lot before the time came and while I did go with boxed baby cereals (for the sake of time) at first... my wee one only ever eats the other packaged stuff when we pack it for those times when going home and thawing out cubes of pears isn't efficient. THAT is what I loved about BABY LOVE.

Norah and Geoff have a very realistic attitude toward making baby food. It's not as time consuming as you'd think and they break down how cost effective it really is. Finally seeing the math really made me happy to be taking the time and making the effort to prep my baby's food. In these budget concious times when organic food is the ideal it's nice to know I can give the baby what is not only healthiest, but what keeps some money around for the college fund too.

Yes, some of these recipes are very, very basic. For someone who already knows what they are doing these might seem a little too "duh". I disagree. Some of the methods I had previously used for prepping foods produced less palate pleasing purees in comparison.
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Format: Hardcover
I bought this book as a gift for my daughter who just had her second child. She made about half of the food for her first child, something that saved money and allowed her to better control the quality and overall nutritional value of the food her child was eating. For those reasons and because she also enjoyed doing it, she was interested in trying to make all of the food for this child, or at least a larger percentage of it.

Since she was already pretty comfortable with the ins and outs of preparing fruits and vegetables, I was looking for a book that would provide interesting recipes for other food groups AND that had a number of recipes that would also suit her toddler, or could be easily adapted to do so. Many of the recipes in this book seemed to fit that mold. My daughter has just started using it and, to date, seems pleased with the recipes. She has found a number that work for her toddler and that she and her husband enjoy as well.

She did say, though, that the claim "Learn how to make two weeks worth of Baby Love meals in less than one hour per week" included in the book description must be for people who are either more adept in the kitchen than she is or who don't have a toddler "assisting" them. Or possibly both. :)

She thought this was a good addition to the baby cookbooks she already had, but felt it wasn't comprehensive enough to be the only book on the subject on hand for parents who are serious about making most of their child's food. She suggested readers might want to consider checking out the following books as well:
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Format: Hardcover Vine Customer Review of Free Product ( What's this? )
What's to love about BABY LOVE? Well, plenty. Except, like most books written by celebrities (which I didn't realize when I ordered it from Amazon) one is left wondering how someone who is SOOOOOO busy finds time to cook all this kids food from scratch. Quite frankly, I'm a stay-at-home-mom for now and find it hard to keep up with 2 toddlers and a baby by myself all day despite better-than-average time management skills. Nevermind the fact that one of the authors here is a professional chef with the skills to match. Baby food would seem like child's play.

Here's what I love...

They assume you know nothing. The introduction of the book covers the basics of food safety, preparation, storage, cooling, etc. They give some realistic time estimates and break down the cost of store-bought food versus homemade baby food, though I doubt that being a TV anchor and the owner of 5 restaurants that cost was the primary motivator here.

Here's a breakdown:
Getting started
Baby's stages (development/taste)
Nutrition/foods to avoid/good starters
Page 11 - cost analysis of homemade vs. store bought brands
15-34 Prep, storage, working safely - lots of info, but not overdone
Not too bad, so far. You can get through the introduction in about a half hour if you're not taking notes.
From here on the rest of the 132 pages are recipes.

First, the basics.

Baby options during the first 6 - 8 months are very limited. There isn't much room for creativity.
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