Toddlers, our mini-mes, are eternally busy, just like tiny bees. They are going through important phases of cognitive, social and emotional development. While they take to move on to hit the milestones of walking, running, and an exceptional number of sports activities, they need excellent nourishment.
Feeding toddlers can be quite a challenge. To pack in nutrition in the small portions they consume, to make the meals taste good and appealing to picky eaters, and to be quick and easy to make for busy moms, the perfect meals need constant planning and deliberation.
Here’s one such meal that packs it all in, Porridge.
A look at the nutrition in porridge
- Bulgur contains fiber, iron and B vitamins;
- Chia, the ancient Mayan word for “strength” packs a nutritional punch;
- Sesame seeds are an excellent source of calcium;
- Dates, apricots, raisins are great naturally sweet alternatives to sugar and contain vital vitamins and minerals;
- Goji berries contain high amounts of antioxidants, Vitamin A and C;
- Cinnamon, cloves and cardamom are highly delicious spices and have anti-inflammatory properties.
As an alternative to bulgur, one can use barley, quinoa or rice or a combination of these. They taste different and your loved ones will enjoy the variety.
- Bulgur – 1/3rd cup
- Chia seeds – 1 tablespoon
- Sesame seeds – 1 teaspoon
- Dried apricots – 4
- Dried dates – 4
- Raisins, cranberries, goji berries – few of each
- Cinnamon stick – 1 inch
- Cardamom – 1
- Clove – 1
- Milk – as needed. You can use any kind of milk: cow’s, soy, almond, rice, oat milk, etc.
- Wash the bulgur/ barley/ quinoa/ rice and put it in a container or directly into the pressure cooker (if using a small size cooker, for e.g. 2 liter capacity).
- Add in the rest of the ingredients and add enough water to cover all the ingredients (normally about 4 times the quantity of bulgur used).
- Pressure cook for about 5 minutes (to be timed after the pressure builds up). Barley needs longer to cook, i.e. about 7-10 minutes without pre-soaking.
- Cool and take out the cinnamon stick, clove and cardamom. Grind to a purée with milk. One can use a mix of milk and water to adjust to the consistency of your little one’s liking.
If your little ones are not fussy about experimenting with different textures, then instead of a purée, one can make it like a regular porridge. Not just my toddler twins, but also my 7-year-old likes to eat this as a breakfast porridge.
With this recipe, it’s easy to include superfoods like quinoa, chia and goji berries in our daily diet. Do give it a try.
Disclaimer: Opinions and methods expressed are solely of the writer. Namaste Switzerland does not undertake any obligation or liability which may arise from the content.