I was intimidated but it's turned out to be a very simple and satisfying process. I swear that the food I make for Chloe is 10x more appetizing than anything I've ever gotten out of a jar. The peas are an amazingly beautiful flourescent color. The fruits smell wonderful! Everything's organic. And now that she's moved on to more complex meals I find that I can pretty much puree anything that we have for dinner.
Chloe is having texture issues and will not self feed anything mushy or slimy. (Her vision therapist believes this has something to do with her vision impairment.) She only has two teeth so this leaves a limited amount of finger foods: crackers, cheerios, toast, broccoli, sweet potato fries...that's about it for now. She turned her nose up at: peas, carrots, scrambled egg, cheese, and bananas. I forsee pureed foods in my future for quite a while.
If you're interested in making baby food you must check out wholesomebabyfood.com. This website tells you anything and everything you may want to know about making baby food. When to introduce, how to prepare, how to puree, how to store and for how long, nutritional value (vitamins/minerals), why they're good for baby (eyes, brain, muscles), and recipes for almost any food you can think of.
Another misconception I had was that I would need special equipment for steaming and pureeing baby food. There are lots of baby food makers out there and I considered many. In the end, I just couldn't bring myself to spend $100 on a tool that would be good for just a few months (little did I know how long Chloe would be on purees). I went with the $7 steamer basket, my blender, and these freezer cubes that I LOVE. Guess what. They work just fine and that's really all you need. I baked some of the fruits/veggies at the beginning, too. The food processor is also a good tool, if you have it, but you can get by with just a blender. I rarely use the food processor because it chops really well but sometimes I have a hard time getting the smooth texture that Chloe likes for most of her foods (this may be user error since I'm not a huge food processor, anyway).
In preparation for our upcoming Mexico trip (I'll blog about that later) Dave bought me this mini food processor so I can make baby food for Chloe while we're at the resort. I'm crazy about it! I can mix up small amounts of food in a breeze and it's such a small appliance that it doesn't take up much room in the dishwasher. The double blades are nice, too, because sometimes thicker foods get "stuck" in my blender. You know, the bottom stuff keeps blending but I didn't create a vortex so the stuff at the top just sits there and never moves down to the blade. This one doesn't seem to have that problem.
My final misconception was the time committment. It's really not that bad. I can't say for sure how much time I spend making baby food. It varies. I think I probably spent 1.5 to 2 hours a week max at the beginning. Now I probably spend 1 hour a week max. I make up a couple batches of fruit cubes to mix with yogurt for breakfast and those two batches will last me a couple of weeks. A batch of veggies and beans will last me a couple of weeks, as well. And now that Chloe's eating a lot of our meals it's just a matter of scooping her serving into the blender and whizzing it up really quickly as I'm serving our own meals.
So if you're interested in making baby food I say, "Give it a try!" You'll probably love it!