Week 1: Our Indian cooking is rarely complete without spices. Let your baby feel the flavor of being born in India. :) At the same time be careful not to over do things. Start with mostly starchy things, sweet or with little salt. You can introduce her to some flavors like cardamom (ilaichi) or cumin (jeera). Just a tiny miny pinch of it, so she knows what it’s like ;)
- Sooji kheer (semolina porridge): Simply heat 1/4 spoon of ghee(or butter) in a pan and roast a spoonful of sooji(semolina) with it. Add water, a pinch of ilaichi powder (cardamom) and sugar to taste.
- Cardamom is a cooling spice and is very good for fighting the heat. (Oh, Delhi summers!!!)
- If the place where you live has cold climate, you can try a tiny string of kesar (saffron). This is a warm spice and is also thought to be very good for skin and complexion.
- I am avoiding milk for now. Since my baby has had formula feed before and not the regular milk. So I am playing safe. For those of you who are already used to giving cow’s / buffalo’s milk to babies can even add milk to the kheer.
- Semi-solid Rice: Clean and grind some rice to the consistency of sooji . Do not add water. Store it dry. Use this just like sooji above.
- If you wish to make a salty version, substitute salt for sugar, cumin or black pepper for cardamom and avoid milk. You can cool it a little and add some curd (dahi) or butter-milk (chhanch).
- Mashed banana. Simple.
- Mashed boiled potato with slight salt and just a touch of red chilly powder.
Once fully cooked you can either mash the veg piece or simply remove it out. The rice would have absorbed most of the nutrition from it.
- If you are a non-vegetarian you can try adding a piece of some meat or fish. (Warning: Since I am a vegetarian myself I cannot personally vouch for this tip. Do consult your baby’s doctor.)
- Daal + Rice. Just the way we elders eat. But the pieces of tomato etc mashed well or ground in a mixer.
- Mashed mango pulp. Or apple.
- Soup: Simply cook few pieces of veggies together. Either strain the stew or purée when fully done. In a pan heat some butter, add a pinch of black pepper powder, salt and the stew. Bring it to one boil. Cool it sufficiently and let your baby savor it.
Happy food-times to you and your little bundle of joy. :)
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