My son's 1st birthday is coming up in 2 weeks and my wife and I are having a little disagreement. He's been 100% paleo since birth, completely breast fed until 7 months and then added liver, ground beef, egg yolks, fruit, startches, etc. We are having a family gathering for him and my wife feels he needs the "first birthday cupcake experience." You know the one where you get all these cut pictures with your child shoveling icing and cake all over his face. We did it with our oldest son, however, we were not Paleo then.
I would prefer just to make him some Paleo Pudding (avocado, banana, cocoa) and put a candle on it but she wants a cupcake. She's willing to compromise with a Gluten Free Cupcake but we can't bake to save our lives and I am afraid of the amount and type of sugar a local baker will add to it. Should I just chill and compromise with a gluten free cupcake from a baker or should I stick to my guns?
Stick to your guns...there's plenty of paleo options out there. If your child has only been eating this way then why introduce "fluffy white death" (that's what we call sugars, flours, etc. in our house) when it's not needed? The baby isn't going to care. After raising three kids and going through the whole "first birthday" thing with all three i've realized that as long as the child has boxes to play with, (from the presents), people to ooh and ahh over them, give them attention and hold them when they're tired, THAT is what makes a child happy. That cupcake that Melissa posted is cuter than any "traditional" cupcake i've seen (and I work at a gluten free bakery) and would make a lovely picture opportunity. Remember what the party is for...to remember your childs first birthday with friends, family and good times. Focus on THAT....not on food. You've got him off on a great start, GOOD FOR YOU! Don't let societal peer pressure and what is deemed as "birthday tradition" throw you off that track. You're amazing parents for giving him the start he's gotten already. What a great way to show others how to do it right. You're excellant examples of showing others what kids SHOULD be eating. I hope this doesn't sound preachy, it's not meant to be...just think about it. I hope, that whatever you decide, that this day will be amazing and the memories will bring you joy in the years to come.
If you have a food processor, you can make a raw "cupcake" with nuts and dates, like this woman does. A cheat I've done is you buy a chocolate larabar, split it in two and squish it into a mini-cupcake pan (with liners or use a silicon pan). Then you ice it with coconut butter mixed with honey. Voila...a cupcake of sorts. Here is one that blogger made, which is more fancier than my version.
But honestly, any baker worth their salt will do custom orders. Maybe if you shop around you can find someone who will work with you to find a recipe you like. I'd particularly look on the internet. I have a lot of friends who do low-sugar custom baked goods in the NYC area and they don't have shops, but they take orders over the internet.
on my daughter's first, I lost out on the cake argument, so I just pushed for as traditional recipe as we could find; real butter, cream cheese frosting, etc. Baby didn't even touch it. She wasn't exposed to sweets, and the stress of the party made her not even like the stuff.
There a lot of less-than-lethal options out there for a good compromise. It's a rare occurrence, and providing no allergies may be nothing more than a temporary sugar buzz. The cranky fit following would be enough to reinforce your reasons to raise kids on real food.
The kid will be jumping off the walls but its his first bday - chill out :) However, I found this great gluten free/sugar free carrot cupcake recipe. It has liquid stevia but its the bday!
I don't bake either (can't) so I asked my mom to make them when my kid was little. Or you can ask a friend or neighbor? People are willing to do anything for a baby's 1st bday!
Were I in your position, I would stick to my guns. Until faulty societal norms/expectations are done away with, things like this will remain "an issue".
We made amazing cupcake style muffins with rice flour. Here is the pic of how they turned out. You can use maple syrup, raw honey, or stevia or a combination of those. For 'frosting' there ain't nothing like straight heavy cream whipped up with a pinch of vanilla for flavor.
This combo won't taste like the hyper sweet store bought mix with nasty hydrogenated frosting, but the kids should have never known about those options anyways. I saw let's alter our children's expectations when it comes to this stuff.
Edit: We modified the recipe from the back of the package:
For "Liquid", we used cream.
Sweetener: substitute raw honey and stevia mix. You could use some sugar too. It's not much anyway.
Replace Canola with Coconut oil.
He's only one year old. Who are the cupcakes for? Him or the adults? What is his favorite food? Why not celebrate with that.
Edit: My child & grandchild never had any trouble smearing anything smearable at that age. I have great pics of DGC wearing a frozen strawberry pop (just blended strawberries - VERY red and messy).
Although of course, it's good to keep your marriage intact also.
Well, when my daughter turned 1, I had never heard of Paleo and would not have dreamed of giving her cake. She'd never had it. Was her first experience with whipped cream however. I just filled a cupcake holder with fresh whipped cream. If you are permitting full fat dairy from 1 on, you could try this to satisfy the guests and cameras.
but be prepared; my daughter didn't like hers. I guess I should have expressed and whipped my milk.
And just why do his new memories have to pertain to somebody else's old memories? Convince your wife that he deserves something fresh, new and creative, not recycled memories.
MEMORIES ARE SO IMPORTANT! In our household, you know what a milkshake is? You cup your breasts, shake em up and down and sing milk-shake, milk-shake. This is certainly a better memory and food association for my daughter than a sugary drink in a cup.
These memories do not fade quickly (maybe never). My daughter is only 6, but can't pass up a chance to shake up a boob if its hanging loose while I get dressed.
Pity I did not know about Paleo then or I would have stuck to my guns. Not fair to the kiddies to back track and remove the bad habits we allow. I am still back tracking.
If you teach him a party has to have a cake, then every year you are in the same predicament. And in the end, it's really nothing special. It's the same thing every Tom, Dick and Janet is getting.
Coconut flour is a great alternative to regular flour or even "potato starch" or "rice flour" ingredients that you find in many gluten free recipes. Here is a pretty clean recipe-
I would keep it as clean as possible or he may feel sick to his stomach since his body isn't used to grains and white sugar!
I say do it. The pictures are priceless. We had cake for our son's first birhtday - got the great photos - he ate a smidge. This past weekend was his second birthday - I got him a gluten and dairy free cake - again took pictures, but this time he ate maybe 2 bites and was off playing again and eating watermelon.
In my opinion I think it's better to give them the option and have them choose what they want rather than not supplying the option at all. I think you'd be surprised with what the choice is (especially since they're little paleo kids so their sweet taste buds must be just like ours) But that's just my two cents.