I love fish, whether it's sashimi, fish and chips or steamed garoupa, hence I've been considering to start introducing fish to my baby's diet since she turned 6months old. However, due to my baby's eczema condition, sparked by her allergy to cows milk, I decided to put it off until her eczema becomes more under control, since fish is considered one of the top foods which babies are likely to develop allergies for.
Choosing and deciding which fish to give to your baby is also a tedious task. I have been researching and reading numerous baby forums and websites on the topic and finally decided that her first fish will be white promfret for the following reasons:
1. It is one of the fishes that do not retain high levels of mercury
2. Easy to buy, clean and steam (steaming the fish with ginger and a dash of ponzu keeps it tasty but also allows me to feed baby non-flavored fish-meat, since I do not want her consuming any salt or sugar before she turns 1 year old)
3. Easy to remove the fish-meat from the fish without too much fuss with bones.
4. I love a steamed promfret myself so I can eat the rest of the fish left behind by baby so that the nutrients end up in the breast milk I supplement her later
Luckily for me, my baby loved the fish! I think she liked it even more than chicken!!!
Things to note when giving your baby fish: always monitor for signs of allergy when feeding the fish. Look out for any swelling, rashes, fever or wheezing. Stop feeding immediately if you think it is causing an allergic reaction! Introduce 1 new fish each time and do not feed many varieties over 3 days. You will need time to monitor her reaction to each new food so a 3 day window is recommended.
I personally fed her the fish on it's own, then mixed it in her porridge when she liked it and didn't show any allergic symptoms. I also chose to feed her the softest part of the fish and in very small pieces but did not blend it since I wanted her to be able to chew and enjoy the texture of the fish. I did not freeze or store any leftover fish for subsequent feeds as I know fish start smelling and tasting fishy once it is no longer fresh. I'd rather cook a new fresh fish again next time rather than defrost cooked fish as I think fresh seafood is the best tasting and less worry around food poisoning and any harmful bacteria (since I'm not exactly the expert at food preparation and handling).