300g butternut squash peeled and 2cm square diced
100g broccoli florets
50g cheddar cheese (optional)
1cm-thick slice of day-old bread, crusts removed
Butternut squash makes a velvety-smooth and slightly sweet puree, which compliments the stronger flavour of the broccoli. Both of these vegetables are packed full of nutrients, including vitamin A, essential for good eye health, and vitamin C, which boosts the immune system, says M&B cook Clare Walker.
Butternut squash is also a good source of energy-boosting B vitamins; it rarely causes an allergic reaction and is easy to digest. Broccoli can make your baby a bit windy and is more difficult to digest, so is best introduced after 8 months of age.
Steam the butternut squash, or boil it in the smallest possible amount of water, for 15 to 20 minutes, until almost tender.
Wash the broccoli well and add to the butternut squash. Continue steaming for another 8 minutes.
Drain and reserve any excess water.
Add the butter and cheese (if using) to the vegetables and blend or mash to required consistency. If necessary, add some of the reserved water.
To freeze, chill thoroughly then freeze in individual portions. It will keep for 3 months in the freezer.
To reheat, defrost thoroughly in the fridge for several hours and make sure it is piping hot before allowing it to cool sufficiently for your baby.
Preheat the oven to 150°C fan or 170°C conventional.
Cut bread into 2cm-wide strips.
Bake on a baking sheet for about 20 minutes or until dry and hard.
The rusks will keep in an airtight container for 3 days.