Saturday, 27 November 2010

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The Incredible Chicken Oatmeal Porridge/Kylling/鸡肉粥[jī ròu zhōu]


Some sources say to serve from 6 months, some say form 7 months, still others say from 8 months, I prefer to serve it to J after the other vegetables, grains and beans have been established, which is from around 7+ months.

If there is only one single meat I would choose to introduce to J, it would be the Incredible Chicken due to its affordability, high nourishing and tonic attributes believed by the Chinese.

Directions:
1. Cut 75g of boneless chicken thigh or half chicken breast into small pieces

2. Boil chicken in a pot with a scant amount of boiling water enough to cover chicken (or approx. 150ml) under medium heat for 5 minutes or until chicken is tender

3. Sprinkle of chopped leek - white portion (optional, it enhances the savory taste of the chicken porridge)

4. Drain chicken and leek, and puree with blender with a little of the stock left from the pot (to get a powdery texture)* or mince it with a knife and fork (my friend Lan from my mother's group taught me this to retain the chicken texture for older babies)

* Recent research has shown that the iron from very finely ground meat is much more readily absorbed by your baby's body. I use a small mini Korean brand blender named Shimono, to minimize wastage, plus this blender is incredibly cheap. My mum bought it from Singapore and gave it to me.

5. Add chicken and leek back to the pot and add 2 tablespoons of oatmeal

6. Stir for 2 minutes or until oatmeal are cooked under low fire

7. Add in 2 teaspoons of olive oil (for baby's brain development)

Overall cooking time including preparation time: 10 - 15 mins.

Storage:
1. Cool down, pour into ice cube tray and freeze

2. Once frozen, knock the cubes out and store them in freezer bags (make up to 1 ice cube tray, can store up to 8 weeks, however, it is preferable to use the cubes within 1 month. Meats are more unstable when frozen so it is best to use meat purées as soon as possible.)

Tip: Also ideal to mix with carrot puree.

Nutritional Value:
Chicken is rich in protein, heme iron, calcium, potassium, niacin and phosphorus (which help release the energy from protein, fats and carbohydrates during the process of metabolism), vitamin B6 and selenium, a powerful anti-oxidant.

IMPORTANT note:
1. Meat is a high protein food - and very large amounts of protein may put a lot of strain on your baby's immature kidneys. Therefore, it is best to offer regular, small quantities of meat mixed into another food (pureed vegetables, for example).

2. Buying organic, free range chicken or the Malaysia kampong chicken (no more kampong left in Singapore :-() for use if possible as free range chickens are allowed to roam outside and are raised without hormones or antibiotics. In addition, their feed is organically grown.

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Additional Comments:
When I first came to Denmark, I found it strange that the Danes eat their porridge sweet with butter, cinnamon and sugar. However, my hubby found it strange that I eat savory porridge with chicken, pork and vegetables! Interesting cultural differences! So I am determined to teach J to appreciate both sweet and savory porridge (you never know who he is going to marry when he grows up!).

The Chinese love their porridge or congee with chicken, fish, pork or century eyes. The Chinese porridge/congee is made of white rice, which is not so healthy or nutritious compared to brown rice or oatmeal. However, to make congee with brown rice would take too long a time, and furthermore brown rice doesn’t achieve the same consistency like congee made from white rice. Then my mother discovered the oatmeal – it achieves the same consistency in much lesser time than Chinese congee made from white rice and tastes as good as the Chinese congee too! She serves it to my father. You can make this for adults too. I love oatmeal porridge and I eat it myself. J already loves oatmeal with banana or corn (sweet), and he is now starting oatmeal with chicken.

References:
www.homemade-baby-food-recipes.com/introducing-chicken-to-baby.html#ixzz0Tq5USwPP

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