Baby Food Around the World
There has been much debate over what should be a child’s first solid meal. Fresh fruits and vegetables? Finely chopped well-cooked meats? Homemade purées and porridges? As it turns out, the answer depends on where in the world you live. Here in the United States, mothers tend to breastfeed for up to six months before introducing their babies to iron-fortified single-grain cereals. But babies' diets in other countries are steeped in tradition and comprised of much different fare.
In Kenya, babies are given sweet potatoes early on to help combat the vitamin A deficiency in their diet. In Jamaica, infants will receive an appetizer of fruit and honey before being served their morning milk. And in Japan, a baby’s first solid food feast is a celebratory event called Okuizome (first eating), a ritual in which the parents present their child with an elaborate spread — fish, sticky rice, octopus, and pickled vegetables — and a biting stone to help promote the growth of strong teeth. Ironically, the little one doesn’t eat the food, as the cultural practice is more symbolic and promise of good health and abundance.
We at The Daily Meal decided to take a look at what baby food looks like in countries all around the world. From khichdi in India to chili powder in Mexico, here is our list of 10 first foods that babies around the world go "goo goo gaga" over.