Some information about tofu for you to consider…
- In some countries and cultures tofu has been part of the diet for many years.
- A nutritious food, tofu is a good source of iron, protein and calcium.
- It is also very versatile – it can be eaten raw, or cooked in various ways, including being added to grain dishes and soups.
- Tofu may serve as a substitute for meats, due to its nutritional content.
- There are three types of tofu: soft, firm, and silken. Of the three, firm tofu is highest in iron and protein and second highest in calcium.
But be aware…
- Tofu is soybean curd made using unfermented soy – and soy products in general are the subject of much discussion and disagreement: some studies prove the health benefits of tofu, some show that it is harmful.
- You should always consult your baby’s paediatrician about specific foods for your baby, especially those that may pose an allergy risk – and certainly don’t give tofu to your baby if he or she has an allergy to soy, or if there is any family history of soy allergy.
- If you decide to give your baby tofu, it is usually offered from the age of about 8 months – as a more complex protein food (like meat and egg yolk) it is sometimes more difficult for an immature system to digest.
Buying, storing, and preparing tofu for your baby…
- If possible always buy organic and non-genetically modified (non-GMO) tofu.
- Remove the tofu from its packaging, drain the water, and blot the tofu dry with a paper towel. Blend, mash, or slice it into small cubes as needed for your recipe.
- Tofu may be stored in a refrigerator for up to 7 days.
- Store it in a container of water that is airtight, changing the water every 1/2 days.
- Tofu may be frozen, but it will become quite spongy in texture and may turn dark in colour.
- Thaw frozen tofu at room temperature – do not use a microwave.
Tofu is great if your baby is learning to use a spoon, as it clings to the spoon well…
- Blend tofu with wheat germ and a banana, or other fruit such as apple, strawberries, blueberries or pears.
- Use silken tofu with fruit, yogurt, and fruit juice to create smoothies for your baby.
- Put cubes of tofu into soups or broth – before seasoning – then remove the cubes and give them to your baby.
- Use it as an alternative to meats in soups.
- Cube tofu and fry it gently in olive oil – add any seasonings that your baby enjoys.
- Mash tofu with cottage cheese, avocado or with hummus.
- Add any seasonings that baby enjoys and use in chunks as finger food, or mash to make a sandwich spread.
- Cut soft or firm tofu into bite-sized cubes, dust with wheat germ, or well-crushed Cheerios or crackers, and serve as finger food.
- Make tofu ‘burgers’- mash tofu with bread crumbs or baby cereal, cooked, finely chopped onion or vegetable puree (depending on your baby’s age), and your baby’s favourite seasonings.
This information presented to you acts as a guide which contains researched information only and is not intended to replace advice from a qualified health professional.
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