When Tilly Beazeley had her son eight years ago, she figured there had to be a simple and easy way to make healthy food for weaning. And out of that idea The Wean Machine (£19.99) was born.
It is a fairly simple device actually. Working a lot like a garlic press, you put food in it and, well, press. You can use it on your own food, so there's no need to cook separate meals. Now that's something I like the sound of.
According to the website it is BPA, Phthalate and PVC Free.
I gave The Wean Machine to Emily, to try out with her 8 month old baby. To start with, Emily did what I probably would have done. Took the Wean Machine out of the box and used it without reading the instructions. Or rather, tried to use it.
"It was a little bit daunting trying to figure it out, until I realised it was just kind of like a large yellow garlic press. I had a fiddle and then realised that I had better read the instructions to make sure I didn’t break it before it even had a chance to squish some food!"
Although it doesn't say on the website what you get exactly with this product, Emily told us that it came with three sizes of grid for various consistencies of food. "I used the one with the largest holes as I am trying to get baby to eat lumpier food."
She had a little trouble when it came to swapping from one grid to another. "I had a problem the first time I did this, as I didn’t realise there was a little notch, and I was trying to put the grid on the wrong way round. On further inspection, I noticed the notch and was able to add the new grid with ease. If only I’d read those instructions in the first place…"
Overall, Emily found that The Wean Machine was really easy to use. "I popped the cooked veggies in the little bowl, and squished them up well." She first tried it with potato, parsnip, sweet potato, carrot and broccoli. However she did have a little bit of trouble with the last two vegetables. "I hadn’t cooked the carrots to death, so they were a little harder to press through the squishing grid, as was the broccoli."
She also found that when the food was pressed through the grid, there was a little bit left in the food holder. You’ll have experienced the same when you use a garlic press – there’s always a little bit left in the bottom that hasn’t managed to go through the grid. But this didn't go to waste. "I was able to scrape out the little bit of food in there, and just use it in the dinners as normal. It was pretty well squished up."
According to the manufacturer, The Wean Machine is easily sterilised and 'top-shelf dishwasher safe'. It is not suitable for microwave sterilisation. Cleaning The Wean Machine was a concern that Emily had, but she needn't have worried as it turned out. "I was simply able to rinse it under hot soapy water, and it was fine."
Emily's overall verdict was a positive one. She liked how useful and portable it is. "I haven't yet taken it to a restaurant with me, but I will be trying that soon. Sometimes I want to take a banana for baby's lunch, and on occasion I've brought a little bowl and a fork with me for mashing. The Wean Machine is totally handy – I can just bring it instead."
You can buy a Wean Machine Grills And Spoon pack, to add to your Wean Machine, for £4.99. The site also sells a book called What Am I Eating, which it describes as "new fun way to educate and share the joy of eating healthy fresh food. Beautiful images with simple, pure and quick recipes. Fun facts too!"