Will was born last summer and this meant I started weaning him in January- the 25th of January to be exact. Someone bought us a baby record book and I have thanked them so many times as I have written so much down that I would otherwise have forgotten in my sleep-deprived new Mum fog! I loved the process of introducing him to food, both as purees and finger foods, but I really struggled with fruit. Winter fruit in Britain is awful, or I should say winter fruit in Britain that babies can eat is awful! I tried, on a number of occasions to buy melons or strawberries but buying these fruits out of season is a futile exercise – they tasted of swede! It seemed that the only fruits on his menu for the first month or two were apples, pears and dried fruits such as figs, prunes and apricots.
The other problem with winter fruit is that its not that suitable to eat as finger food. On numerous occasions I bought pears that actually went off before they became soft enough for my little one to gum, and raw apples were definitely not going to be suitable. Inspiration finally struck when I was making a crumble for a family lunch. It occurred to me that aside from at the sugar that most crumbles are filled with, it was a pretty baby-friendly pudding. I decided to deconstruct it and these apple crumble bites were the outcome.
The apple is baked and therefore soft enough for young babies to gum or chew, whilst the crumble coating is sugar free yet delicious and turns the humble apple chunk into a really tasty pudding or snack. These have now become a staple make in my kitchen. I offer them to Will on their own, or as an edible spoon with a yoghurt or fruit puree dip. My husband and I enjoy them with yoghurt and maple syrup, on top of rice pudding (amazing) or even with a bowl of warm custard! They are lovely warm or cold and keep well in the fridge for 48 hours.
The ingredients you need are limited, they are fast to make and healthy. They also increase the nutrient and calorie content of fruit for your little one- always good as they need plenty to keep them growing!
- 2 Tbsps rolled oats
- 2 Tbsp ground almonds
- 1 tsp cinnamon (or to taste, you could also use ginger)
- 2 apples
- Peel and core 2 apples and chop each apple into 6 chunks
- Place in an oven tray and pop in a preheated oven at 180c
- In a small bowl combine the oats, ground almonds and cinnamon
- After 5 minutes pull the apple out of the oven- it should be warmed through and ever so slightly damp, this will ensure the dry ingredients stick to it.
- Ensuring the apple isn’t too hot to touch, coat each slice in the dry ingredients and place on a lined baking tray or a cupcake tray.
- Bake at 180c for 15 minutes until the apple feels soft and the crumble coating is golden.
Now that summer fruit is available I have been making these less. But I made them again the other day as the weather has turned really damp and grey here and we were all in need of something cozy for brunch. I fell in love with them all over again and had to share them with you.
What are your favourite ways to use apples? I’d love to hear!