Tuesday, 30 June 2015


Check out my Pinterest page by clicking on the image below for more ideas - there are so many amazing blogs and recipes out there! 

The Simplest Sweet Potato Mash

When I'm running out of time, but need a quick addition to a meal, I turn to the stock of sweet potatoes I keep in the fridge. 

Sweet potatoes are a staple in our house 

Why bother to peel and boil them if you are making mashed sweet potato? Just take one small potato, prick several holes in the skin and place in the microwave. I find a small sweet potato can be cooked in as little as 2-3 minutes. 

Once cooked, cut in half (careful - it will be hot!) and scoop the flesh out into a bowl. I add a small dollop of dairy free spread and 30mls of my baby's regular milk-replacement formula and mix to a smooth consistency, (you could also used expressed milk or a non-dairy alternative such as Oatly milk). Let cool and serve!

Don't forget that this isn't only suitable for baby - you can make the same for yourself. Just replace the spread and milk with whatever versions you want. 

Dairy free finger foods

Baby led weaning is very popular at the moment. The philosophy centres around babies weaning at their own pace, and having food from the family's plate. Not such a bad idea, right? It means less cooking for you as you can just siphon things off of your plate and on to baby's. 
Not T - just a stock photo from pixabay.com! 

I don't always find this practical however. When we're out to eat, I can't always trust that our food will be made to the same strict dietary requirements that I do at home, so I tend to bring food for T with me wherever we go. 

Some babies aren't very keen on feeding themselves, whilst others scream at the sight of a spoon. I mix and match spoon-feeding and finger foods for T, as I find that this is the right balance for us. 

Sunday, 28 June 2015

Bus Bar

Yesterday, our local park held a proms afternoon. I thought that this double decker bus bar was fantastic and had to share!

Dairy free picnic for T, Prosecco for me - everyone's a winner!

Homemade hummus

I always used to buy hummus in the bucketload. Once I learned how easy it was to make, I never buy it now. 

Quick and east ingredients - for you and for baby 

This recipe is not suitable if your child has a sesame allergy as tahini is made from sesame seeds. 

Saturday, 27 June 2015

Dairy free flapjacks

T has yet to try the delight of these, but I made them quite a bit when I was still breastfeeding him and was following a dairy free diet. 


250g porrdige oats
125g dairy free spread
125g light brown soft sugar
2 tbsp golden syrup


  1. Melt the dairy free spread in a saucepan, then add the sugar and golden syrup and stir until all is melted through. 
  2. Pour the melted sugar mix into a bowl with the porridge oats and combine. 
  3. Tip the combined mixture into a baking tin and press flat. 
  4. Bake in the oven for 20mins at 200 Celsius. 

These make are a great energy source for you, or are suitable for an older child as a yummy treat. 

Friday, 26 June 2015

Fruit & Vegetable Shop

Things are looking amazing in my local fruit and vegetable shop right now. I think I need to start looking for some new recipe ideas...

Heritage tomatoes, round courgettes, globe artichokes and more...

Thursday, 25 June 2015

Two dish batch cooking

Because of T's cow's milk allergy, I cook a lot of his meals from scratch so that I know exactly what is in them. 

To make things easier, I batch cook, but I also make more than one dish at once, especially if they have similar ingredients. 

Here, I'll show you a quick and easy way to make one-pot beef bolognese, and cottage pie with minimal fuss. 

Dairy free Chocolate & Nut cookies

Have a look at this Jamie Oliver recipe here.

Obviously not suitable if you or your child has a nut allergy, but I made them and they were great! 

Unfortunately T was a little too young at the time to help eat them...

Gone in minutes! 

What about soy-based formula?

There are many articles out on the web that talk about soy milk and babies. I'll try to explain a bit behind the science of it all. 

We are told that soy-based formula is unsuitable for most infants, but why?

If your baby has been prescribed a soy based formula, please do not discontinue it, and discuss any concerns with your doctor

Wednesday, 24 June 2015

Products: Salt Free Stock Cubes

Babies under 1 year should have no more than 1g of salt in their diet. These stock cubes from boots are fantastic as they contain NO salt. 

As I cook a lot of Little T's meals from scratch, I can be sure that he's getting well under the daily limit with these stock cubes. 

See the link here which talks about daily salt limits for babies (NHS website) 

TOP TIP - if you don't need a whole cube (each cube makes 500mls stock) then just cut the cube into 4 and adjust your liquid amounts appropriately! 

1 cube - 500mls boiling water. 
1/2 cube - 250mls
1/4 cube - 125mls

I use these in everything!

These stock cubes come available in vegetable, chicken and beef. I find that I use the vegetable ones the most. 

Check out my other recommendations in Products!

Cross-stitching habit

Ok, so not really at all related to dairy free, but I have to share these cute little cross stitches I made for T's nursery. I found the patterns on Pinterest and adapted them to fit the embroidery hoops that I own. 

I suppost it won't be long until T grows up and replaces them with tractors and dinosaurs! 

Cross stitch lion, giraffe and owl 

Tuesday, 23 June 2015

What is Cows' Milk Allergy?

Cows milk allergy (CMA) (sometimes termed Cows milk protein intolerance) along with other food allergies, appears to be on the increase. It's not entirely clear why, but it means that up to 7.5% of children can have an adverse reactions with cow's milk. It is also more common in families where one or more individuals are "atopic" - that is, have problems such as asthma, eczema, or hay fever. 

Butternut Squash with red lentils

A quick dish that's full of hidden veggies and high in protein. 

Makes 1-2 portions 

Some cupboard essentials 

50g red lentils, 
50g grated butternut squash, 
1 small carrot, grated. 
250mls salt free organic vegetable stock, 
1 tbsp organic rapeseed oil. 

Diary Keeping

I keep a diary of all of T's food and milk intake. Partly because this pleases my anaesthetic sense of record keeping while I am on maternity leave, secondly because it allows me to spot patterns in T's habits. 

My Dairy diary! 

It's recommended that the minimum milk intake from 6 months is 600ml (1 pint) every day. Some days T doesn't quite manage that amount, so I know I can top him up with extra milk substitute formula in porridge, rice pudding or pasta and creamy tomato sauce

See my other ideas for getting more milk into your baby,  (to follow!)

If your baby is consistently taking less than 300mls daily, contact your Dietician for further advice. 

"Creamy" Tomato Pasta Sauce

I use this pasta sauce as a base for so many other dishes. Why not try it for yourself?


1 tbsp organic rapeseed or olive oil. 
1 small courgette, grated. 
1 medium carrot, peeled and grated. 
1 small white onion, finely chopped. 
400g tin tomatoes, preferably organic
1/2 low salt vegetable stock cube (see here)
100mls water 
100ml milk equivalent: milk replacement formula, oat- or almond-based milk

Opt for fresh, seasonal veggies where possible. 

Optional substitutions or extras:
100g grated butternut squash
1 small finely diced red pepper
1 Garlic clove 


1.  Place the onion in a heavy bottomed saucepan and fry in the oil until soft. 
2. Mix in the grated courgette and carrot and continue to fry on a medium heat. 
3. Once sweated down, mix in the tin of tomatoes, and stock cube and add the water
4. Cover and simmer for approximately 20-30mins. 
5. Once the sauce has reduced down, add in 6 scoops of milk replacement formula, or  enough plant-based milk to make the sauce the desired consistency. 
6. Allow to cool before serving

Blend as age appropriate for your baby. Older babies can have it as it is. 

Can be frozen. I divide it into ice cube trays to allow easy portioning. 

Serving ideas:

Defrost and mixed with pasta for a simple lunch

Mix in with cooked couscous for an easy lunch time dish. 

Use as the base for beef bolognese or tuna pasta stars

Also makes a great tomato base for older children to get hidden veggies into them! 

See more of my dairy free recipes. 

Monday, 22 June 2015

Dairy Substitutes - Cashew nut butter

Cashew nut butter has been fantastic for my little one. T absolutely loves the stuff. 

Peanut butter can be controversial, some advise avoiding it where nut allergies run in the family. Often, however, it can come with additives including sugar and salt which you want to avoid in babies. 

T loves nut butter spread on toast or rice cakes, spread onto sticks of apple and pear, or smeared on banana. 

Cashew nut butter - not on any commission to sell! 

First strawberry of the season

Thought I'd add my photo of the first strawberry of the season!
 Very impressed as I can rarely grow anything. 

The beginning

Back in November, when my son was born, I was elated. 

Everyone arrives, with gifts, food and hopeful wishes that he will be a "good baby".

What is a good baby? It's one that contentedly mewls when hungry; one that feeds peacefully and sleeps as though kissed by the breath of angels. 

Well, T was none of these. 

It became swiftly apparent over coffee mornings with NCT pals, whose babies would suckle beatifically at their Madonna-like breast, that my wailing, inconsolable, purple-faced offspring was "difficult". 

And, oh God, he was difficult. 

There was the never ending colic, the on-off, on-off and back again whilst breastfeeding, the failure to ever be put down, or sleep. How he would wake within seconds of being slipped oh-so-quietly into his moses basket. How he would vomit. And vomit. And vomit. How his tiny body would shake and quiver because he was so constipated, and how his poor little tummy would become hard and you could see his discomfort in the days leading up to a poo. Oh, and more vomit. Vomit over patches of vomit on my clothes. Dribbles of vomit I'm ashamed to say I let the dog lick because I was too tired to clean them up. 

Despite all of this, I plodded along. Bleary-eyed and sleep-deprived, my husband and I accepted our lot: accepted that this was "just the way he was" and continued mixing gaviscon into sterilised pots to syringe into him at breastfeeds. My respite was the one bottle of bedtime formula that allowed me to get a continuous 3 or 4 hours' sleep before the night onslaught began again. 

We carried on like this until T was 4.5months old. When his weight gain stalled, we finally had our eyes opened that something was up. Something was really up. 

As a doctor, I began researching, turning my diagnostic ear towards books and the internet. And then it clicked: one throw-away comment at the [weekly] GP visits I'd been making. "Sometimes giving up dairy helps," said my GP as I was leaving one day, "Some of these babies have dairy allergies." At the time, I'd not given it much thought, but the more I read, the more it made sense. 

And so we both went dairy fee. 

The change was nothing short of a miracle. 

Within a week, he was a baby transformed. Happy, gurgling, contented, and sleeping. Almost.

And here begins our journey. 

A much happier baby now we're dairy free