* Prices may differ from that shown
As an older Mum - I was nearly 40 when Millie was born - I seemed to have hundreds of friends who already had children and who were desperate to bestow new-Mum gifts and (welcome) advice. This is how I came to own and use these lidded plastic storage trays. They were given to us by a friend who made all of her baby food, ensuring that it was both organic and nutritious.
Designed to freeze and store breast milk and baby purees, these white storage trays really are simply fancy ice-cube trays with a lovely green lid. They are sold in a package of two trays and two lids. Currently (May 2013) they are available from Amazon and Ebay for approximately £15.
The idea is that a caregiver spends some time doing batch cooking of food for a young child, and then freezes that food in portions that can be defrosted in small portions at a later date.
My husband and I found that the trays are of very good quality and are easy to use. There are 24 compartments that each hold one fluid ounce (approximately 30ml); in theory one cube per one meal.
The lid is design to prevent freezer burn and to keep freezer odours out of the baby's food. It also enables the trays to be stacked. The lid detaches and reattaches easily but not so easily that it comes off in the freezer or when lightly knocked. The frozen blocks of soft, mummy-made food usually come out of the trays fairly easily. On the odd occasion I have needed to run some hot water over the outside of the tray in order to defrost the edge of the base of the frozen food cubes. I then gently knock or bang the base of the filled storage tray on the kitchen counter. Using this method ensured that I was always able to get the frozen food out of the tray.
If you are familiar with other reviews I have written, you may have noted that we practiced baby led weaning with our daughter. So, we used these storage trays to freeze different meat "sauces" or soft food items that then formed part of our daughter's meals. Think bolognaise sauce, rice pudding and sweet potato.
After six months of use the trays started becoming stained. It's difficult to know if this impacted on the flavour of any foods; certainly there have been no red stains transferred to the rice pudding.
I often think that there are organisations out there that seem to jump on the "new Mum, new baby" bandwagon. What's different about this item is that it is marketed as being made in the USA from biodegradable plastic, which biodegrades 10% in 6 months. They are also BP-A and phthalate-free.
I believe that this package of lidded trays is a very useful but expensive item. My husband and I are both very happy to recommend and even buy this as a new-parent "luxury" gift.
*** My top tip: freeze food in these trays, then once frozen transfer the individual cubes into a larger storage container that is then placed in the freezer.