Welcome to the year 2016 friends! If you’re reading this I take it you’ve made it through the holidays and Santa’s fulfillment of your children’s dreams. Or maybe you weren’t privy to the secret repartee Billy had with mall Santa so your good intentions fell a little short of the perfect Christmas morning?
Like me, did you eat a little too much, celebrate a little too much, and had any form of household schedule go by the wayside with kid’s (and your own) bedtimes and meal times all over the map? Was your house like the “Wild Wild West” as my husband hails our’s during the holidays…anything goes?
Don’t worry, even the Wild Wild West evolved into a place less barbarian over time, and so do our homes after the holidays. So now it’s back to reality. Reality is good. Reality keeps us grounded. Just make sure your reality is of your own choosing and you’re home free.
I choose to forget that we’re facing a harsh couple more months of winter and the cold, darkness that goes with it. It’s January and February, the middle of the arctic season without all the bells and whistles of the holidays to keep us distracted, so settle in friends. No more Christmas carols, first snow or sparkles. But there will still be shiny red hearts in February so stay strong.
Let’s try to go out of our way to incorporate some bright and fun island fruits into baby’s and our own snack and meal times at this time of year to help transport ourselves to brighter days as we hold on for the warmth of spring and summer.
Papayas are exactly what the doctor ordered! When you slice through the center of this beautiful fruit it reveals the most stunning shade of rosey pink flesh that will put a smile on your face in the darkest of days.
Papayas have a thin, non-edible skin. The fruit has a mild sweet flavour and its texture is similar to a cantaloupe but softer. You can tell a papaya is ripe if it feels as soft, or softer than a ripe avocado when applying light finger pressure, and the skin is amber or orange in colour. Make sure to choose a nicely ripened papaya for this baby food puree. If it doesn’t seem ripe enough after you’ve brought it home you can always put it into a brown paper bag outside of the fridge to speed up the ripening process if you like. This is true for mangoes as well. Papayas are an excellent source of vitamin C and a good source of potassium, vitamin A and fiber.
If you’ve never prepared one before here is a little video to help guide you through peeling, seeding and chopping this baby in no time.
Papaya Banana Puree (aka “Transport me to a warm island in the dead of winter please puree”)
- 1 ripe Papaya
- Mashed banana to add to puree just before serving
- Peel and seed papaya, then chop into small pieces.
- Add fruit to a food processor, blender or large bowl to use a hand blender to puree.
- Puree to a smooth thin consistency. Feel free to add a little bit of water to the mix if the puree isn’t thin enough.
- The papaya puree can be transferred to freezing trays to be used within 3 months, or to a food storage container in the fridge to be used within 48 hours.
- When you’re ready to serve to baby, stir in a bit of freshly mashed banana to the puree for an over the top tropical experience…or maybe just a bit of added texture and sweetness.
Makes - Approx. 8 Servings (1 serving = 2 tbsps.)
Note: You can also freeze some chopped papaya to use in a smoothie for some added tropical goodness for yourself or the rest of the fam.
I wish you all the best for the upcoming year and I’m looking forward to sharing more baby food recipes, tips and tricks with you with a few laughs along the way! Keep smiling, cooking and choosing your best reality so whenever you have to go back to work, or get back to your routine after a fun holiday you welcome it with open arms.