Why organic? Because we like to keep things simple. Babies are busy growing, and many of their systems aren’t fully developed yet. Because of this, it makes good sense to give them only the purest, safest foods we can find and avoid adding anything unnecessary.
5 simple reasons organic is best for babies:
- No artificial chemical fertilisers
- No nasty food additives
- Use of pesticides is restricted
- Routine use of drugs is prohibited
- GM crops and ingredients are banned
This “queen of greens” is a relative of cabbage, and it more than lives up to its nickname – in fact, it's one of the healthiest, most nutrient-dense veggies on the planet! Kale belongs to the brassica family of plants (along with other nutritional stars like broccoli and cabbage). It's a source of vitamins K and A, iron and calcium, and also contains dozens of phytonutrients – all of which have earned it a starring role in our new recipes!
Iron is particularly important during weaning, because babies' bodies and bones are growing fast, and by the time they reach 6 months old, the natural stores of iron they had at birth are beginning to run low. Serving a food that's high in vitamin C like strawberries along with the kale will help your baby absorb more of the iron it offers.
Many of the organic blueberries we use in our recipes are technically bilberries – wild European blueberries - which are handpicked on forested farms in Poland, then pureed quickly before they can lose any of their flavour or nutrition. Bilberries are even richer in colour, flavour and antioxidants than the farmed blueberries you get in the supermarket – but whichever sort you choose, these little purple packages have some of the highest antioxidant levels of any fruit, so it’s worth keeping as much of that delicious goodness as we possibly can!
We love all kinds of berries here at Plum! After all, what's not to like? In addition to being ridiculously delicious, strawberries offer plenty of vitamin C, as well as an impressive number of antioxidants. In fact, just 100 grams of strawberries (that’s about ten berries) contains more than 100% of the day’s vitamin C for an adult! Our berries soak up the sun on organic farms in Spain (lucky little things).
We often sneak a few raspberries into our recipes as well, because they pack at least nine different antioxidants, plus another shot of vitamin C, into those little bumpy skins.” Raspberries have one of the highest values of any fruit on the ORAC scale, which measures the antioxidant capacity of different foods. Ours come from the cooler climates of Serbia and Poland, which gives them a complex, delicious berry flavour.
Ultra-nutritious grains and seeds like wholegrain rice, millet, quinoa, buckwheat, barley and amaranth have been treasured staple foods around the world for thousands of years, and for good reason! They are a great source of slow-release energy, and they give our recipes a good dose of everything from B vitamins to calcium, magnesium, iron and vitamin E. Amaranth and quinoa are also protein powerhouses – they contain more than twice the protein of rice, and they're some of the only plant foods that offer a “complete” protein that contains all the amino acids our bodies need.
While we usually associate carrots with the color orange, carrots actually come in a host of other colors as well, including white, yellow, red and purple. (In fact, purple, yellow and red carrots were the only colors of carrots cultivated before the 15th or 16th century!) All carrots are terrific sources of vitamin A, which is important for normal vision and supports the immune system – but we chose purple carrots for our new recipes, because in addition to looking amazing, they're also rich sources of powerful antioxidants called anthocyanins.