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ORGANIC CUISINE ... FOR BABY

The Brooklyn Paper
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Conscientious parents would love to prepare their babies’ meals from fresh, organic products, but the time-consuming number of steps involved make it prohibitive. Shazi Visram and Jessica Rolph (pictured) have the solution with their line of fresh, frozen baby meals, called HAPPYBABY, launched on May 14, 2006 - Mother’s Day.

Their trademark slogan, "Think Outside the Jar," says it all: the DUMBO company’s products are meant to be alternatives to highly processed, chemical-laden, jarred baby foods. Their method of fresh freezing captures not only produce’s vibrant colors but their nutrients as well, making the meals close to homemade.

Visram was interested in both health and sustainable, organic agriculture.

"I feel like I am doing my part in paving the way for healthier lives," she says. She also believes that if you feed children well early on, they develop a taste for good, quality food that will "keep their bodies on track for healthy, happy lives fueled by nutritious natural foods."

To further impact child welfare, some HAPPYBABY proceeds go to Project Peanut Butter, a nonprofit organization working to feed starving children in Malawi with peanut butter.

The meals come in the form of frozen cubes, 10 flavors in all. Six flavors are smooth, to feed babies ages six months and up, while four flavors are "a little chunky," for nine months and up. (Three cubes make one serving.)

Visram contends that baby food need not be bland. By putting a little extra something into each flavor, babies are introduced to different sensations at an early age. For example, Yes Peas contains mint, while the "palate-expanding flavor," Mama Grain, contains the nutty quinoa from Peru.

The organic ingredients include butternut squash, black beans, lentils, mango, spinach and apples, among others. The products of HAPPYBABY, which has offices at 25 Washington St., between Plymouth and Water streets, are United States Department of Agriculture-certified organic.

HAPPYBABY ($3.99) is available from www.Freshdirect.com. For more information, and suggestions for combining flavors or adding ingredients, go to www.happybabyfood.com.

Roberta Roberti is a freelance writer and is awaiting the publication of her cookbook, "What? No Meat? Traditional Italian Cooking the Vegetarian Way."
Updated 4:00 pm, November 10, 2010
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