I thought since Buttercup was doing so well with her cereal I'd try some other small finger foods. I'd made a moroccan dish that called for beans and raisins so I pulled out a few of each and put them on Buttercup's tray for her. I gave the beans a little pinch first to soften up the skins, but the raisins were already soft from being cooked.
I was so impressed with how well Buttercup did! She hasn't mastered her pincer grasp skill, but I have noticed with her breakfast cereal that she has devised her own method of getting small food items into her mouth: she rakes them into the part of her fist by her thumb then shoves that part of her hand in her mouth while simultaneously opening her fingers. That is what she did with these teeny foods, as well. She enjoyed both of these new foods.
I can see both beans and raisins becoming good staples for Buttercup in the future. And beans are the magical fruit, after all...
PROS: good nutrition, no preparation!
CONS: baby must be able to handle small items