Natural Mantra

10 Simple & Easy Recipes To Add Ragi To Your Child’s Diet

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In our fast moving lives and heavily advertised world, we have somehow begun to majorly consume just 2-3 varieties of grains which is “Wheat, Rice and Dal or Pulses” as a part of our daily diet. When actually India is blessed with an ability to grow a huge variety of crops. Millets is one of those forgotten crops, whose nutrition value is simply unmatchable to whole wheat or rice. In this blog, we will just focus on “Ragi” or “Finger Millet” which is sort of gaining popularity these days because of it high calcium content. And therefore makes it a great option for kids.

As a child I remember my grandmother telling me stories of how she would make Ragi Mudde (in kannada) /Ragi Ball every day. The family would have this each morning and leave to school or work and would just not feel hungry for 5-6 hours. Its almost 10 times richer in calcium than rice or wheat. Its complex carbohydrates and fibre content makes the body spend a lot of calories just to digest it.

Despite its many many healthy benefits, Ragi is still absent on our plates and I hope to help you include Ragi in your family foods as regularly as possible through these simple & quick recipes:

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1. Sprouted Ragi Porridge

This is my all time favorite breakfast on days when I get up late and don’t have enough time to make an elaborate meal. I sometimes add 2-3 tsp of grounded dry fruits powder to make it more nutritious.

Cooking Time: 5 Mins
Servings – Makes about 2 cups, can serve 2 people
Ingredients
• Sprouted Ragi Flour or Plain Ragi Flour – 4 Tsp
• Water or Milk – 50-60 mL
• Powdered Jaggery or Dry Dates powder – 2 Tsp
• Elachi powder – A small pinch for flavor

Method:
• Take a broad bowl, add the ragi flour and cold water/milk and mix till all the lumps are gone.
• Add jaggery/dry dates powder, elaichi powder, dry fruits powder (optional).
• Cook on a medium flame for 5 mins.
• Ensure you continuously stir while cooking to ensure the porridge does not stick to the bowl and does not form lumps.
• The porridge will thicken and begin to boil.
• Keep aside to cool and serve warm.

If you’re wondering how you can get sprouted ragi powder to make the ragi porridge, check out our recipe for homemade sprouted ragi powder for babies. If you are super busy to make it yourself, don’t worry! You can buy 100% organic sprouted ragi flour , free from sugar, salt, milk powder chemicals, pesticides and added flavors, directly from our store.

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2. Ragi in Buttermilk

Our kids come back home from play and are super thirsty. Instead of offering a packed juice try giving them this tasty ragi butter milk.

Cooking Time: Less than 2 mins
Ingredients:
• Instant Ragi Flour (This Ragi flour will be pre-roasted and ready to eat)
• Butter Milk
• Salt to taste
• Oil, mustard seeds, Udad Dal, Curry Leaves for seasoning
Method:
• To a glass of buttermilk, add salt and 2 tsps of Instant Ragi flour and mix well to remove all lumps. Keep aside.
• Then heat a small pan, add oil, mustard seeds, udal dal, curry leaves and season it will till they begin to sputter.
• Add this delicious seasoning to the ragi butter milk and serve chilled.
You can buy 100% organic instant ragi flour , free from sugar, salt, milk powder chemicals, pesticides and added flavors, directly from our store.

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3. Sugar Free Ragi Laddoos

Mothers are always busy. We don’t like to spend too much time in the kitchen are always looking for quick & healthy recipes for our kids. So here is a 5 min ragi laddoo recipe that is super easy to make, even your expert grandmother will give you a pat on the back!

Cooking Time: 5 Mins

Ingredients:
• Instant Ragi powder or Ragi Huri Hittu (This is pre-roasted ragi powder and ready for consumption) – 1 cup/100g
• Fresh dates – 5-6 (You can substitute it with jaggery)
• Almonds, Better if they are roasted – 10 pieces
• Ghee/Coconut Oil – 3 Tsp
• Elachi or Cardamom powder – 2 pods

Method:
• Put all the ingredients in a blender and churn till everything is mixed well.
• You can add an extra 1-2 spoons of oil if you need them to bind/blend well.
• Take it out in a bowl and make them into small balls using your palm.
• Store them in room temperature. Consume before 4-5 days.
You can buy 100% organic instant ragi flour , free from sugar, salt, milk powder chemicals, pesticides and added flavors, directly from our store.

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4. Ragi Dosa – A gluten free dosa without rice

Sharing my mother’s innovation to make dosa without rice. Rice no doubt is a staple food of India, but it does come polished and refined these days that its final nutritional value is definitely lower than millets. So this is an inspiring recipe made with Kodo millet which substitutes the function of rice in dosa.

Soaking Time: 2-4 Hours
Preparation Time: 5 Mins
Ingredients for the batter:
• Kodo Millet – 1 Cup
• Ragi or Finger Millet – ½ Cup
• Channa Dal – 2 Tsps
• Udad Dal – 3/4th Cup

Method to make the batter:
• Wash and soak all ingredients for 2-4 hours.
• Don’t add too much water to soak, add just enough that a thin layer of water covers the grains. We don’t want to lose the vitamins and minerals by throwing away this water.
• Grind them to a fine paste and keep the batter to ferment overnight.

Method to make Ragi Dosa
• To begin with add some drinking water (less than 1 cup) if the batter is very thick
• Heat the pan, drizzle with oil and pour as we do for regular dosa.
• Cover the dosa with lid, so the steam heats up the layer facing the top.
• Drizzle some more oil and cook on a medium flame for 3-4 mins
• Serve warm with your favorite chutney or sambhar.

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5. Ragi Seviyaan 

Another recipe from Ragi that makes a super healthy breakfast filled with calcium. You can buy ready ragi seviyyan mostly available in south Indian stores in your locality. This recipe can be made within 10 mins, for either breakfast or an evening snack for your hungry toddlers.

Cooking Time: 10 Mins
Ingredients:
• Ragi Seviyyan – 1 Cup
• Fresh Grated Coconut – 2 Teaspoon
• Channa Dal – 1 Teaspoon
• Green Chilli – 1 diced in half
• Turmeric – 1 pinch
• Mustard Seeds, Curry Leaves, cold pressed oil of your choice for seasoning
Salt for Taste

Method:
• Soak Ragi Seviyyan in warm water for 2 mins. Drain water and keep aside.
• Start the seasoning in a broad pan, with mustard seeds, curry leaves, chillies.
• Add the channa dal and roast in oil till it turns slightly brown.
• Add a pinch of turmeric, soaked ragi seviyaan, salt and stir well.
• You need to cook for just 2-3 mins, add freshly grated coconut, mix and serve hot.

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6. Jaggery Ragi Cookies (Eggless and No Maida)

These fibre rich cookies are so easy to make and comes handy when your hungry kids come back from play, while travelling or even when you want to enjoy a healthy snack with your family with an evening tea or coffee!
This recipe uses no maida at all, can be made without sugar too and its simply delicious & crunchy!

Cooking time: 30 mins
Ingredients:
• Ragi or Finger Millet Flour – 1 cup
• Whole Wheat Flour – 1 Cup
• Cold Butter cut in pieces (Saltless) – 1 Cup
• Brown Sugar or Jaggery or Dates Powder – 1 Cup
• White Til or Sesame Seeds – 3 Tea spoons (optional)
• Vanilla Essence – 1 spoon or elaichi powder
• Milk or water – 3-4 Teaspoons

Instructions:
• Sieve ragi and wheat flour. Mix them well.
• Add all the remaining ingredients to make a tight dough. Dont add too much milk. It should be slightly harder than the chappati dough. Knead it for 5-10 mins
• Keep the dough in the fridge for 10 mins
• Make small balls and press them in your palm to make them flat and round. It can be about 3-4mm thick they will rise when baked.
• Preheat the oven at 180 degrees for 10 mins
• Bake these biscuits for 18 mins at 180 degrees
• They will still be soft once they are baked. Let them cool down for 15-20 mins and they will turn hard and crispy.

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7. Sugarfree – Ragi Chocolate & Coconut Blocks

Who does not like chocolate? And why do we always blame the kids for eating them  Btw, Cacao is healthy, manufacturers add lot of vegetable oil, sugar and milk powder to make it unhealthy and filled with calories. The raw cacao powder is actually full of minerals, vitamins and anti-oxidants. So, here is a super healthy dessert recipe for your kids, who wont even know about Ragi being added.

Cooking Time: 10 Mins

Ingredients:
• Instant Ragi/Nachni flour – 1 cup
• Grated Fresh Coconut – 1 cup
• Cacao powder – 2 Tsp
• Jaggery – ½ cup
Dry Dates Dates powder ½ cups
• Melted Ghee/Coconut Oil – ½ cups

Method:
• Take a heavy bottom pan, add 1 cup water, 2-3 Tsp of ghee/oil and bring to boil. Best to use a medium flame to allow gentle cooking.
• Add the jaggery and allow to melt and bring to boil.
• Add grated coconut, Instant Ragi flour, Cacao and dry dates powder to the melted jaggery and mix well.
• Stir continuously and keep adding ghee/oil little by little for the mixture to get together.
• Cook until the mixture starts to leave the side of the wok. Switch off the heat and pour the mixture into a greased tray.
• Using a knife, cut it into square blocks and leave it to cool.

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8. Ragi Rotti

Another traditional and popular dish in south India, especially Tamil Nadu and Karnataka. The roti will be slightly harder than the wheat chappati, so I would recommend feeding babies who have atleast 2-4 teeth to chew well.

Cooking Time: 10 mins
Ingredients:
• 3 cups ragi flour
• 2 cups hot water
• 1 teaspoon cumin seeds
• 1 medium red onion, chopped
• A few curry leaves chopped finely
• Salt to taste

Instructions:
• Boil the water and add to the flour. Add cumin, onion, curry leaves, and salt.
• Mix this all together and close the container for 10 minutes, so that the steam of the hot water softens the flour.
• Mix in a small amount of oil until the dough is soft.
• Grease a flat griddle with oil and spread the dough in a circular motion. Cover the pan and cook over medium heat for 2 to 3 minutes. Do not overcook, as the roti may get hard. Serve hot.

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9. Ragi Ball – The best natural Calcium Pill!

Post delivery, most moms complain of bone pains, where back pains and knee pains are very common. The common reason for these pains is calcium deficiency. When mother’s breastfeed their babies, a lot of calcium & protein from the mother’s body goes into the breast milk. When the mother consumes less calcium through her diet, the body simply is designed to pull out calcium from her bones to feed her baby, resulting in these bone aches.

Ragi being a power house of calcium, one way of naturally consuming a lot of calcium is to eat Ragi Balls or Ragi Mudde as it is called in south India. It’s a steamed ball of ragi, the size that you can hold in your palm. Have one ball every morning or afternoon with your favorite curry for a month, and you will have no signs of pains in your body. Eating a big portion is important for breast-feeding mothers is because they need to meet the calcium requirement for themselves and their baby. So do ensure you take at least 100g of Ragi powder to prepare your meal each time. The best part of this recipe is, it has a weight loss benefit to it  Eat more and Lose more body fat!

When your babies grow to 8+ months, you can even make mini balls for them which they can directly swallow.

Cooking Time : 15 mins

Ingredients:
• Ragi powder – 1 cup
• Cooking time – 10 mins
• Water – 1.5 cups

Method:
• The ratio of water to ragi powder is important in this recipe. It is 1:1.5 cups of Ragi:Water ratio, just incase you need to make 2 or more balls.
• First bring the water to boil. Then add the ragi powder and cook on a medium flame for 10 mins. Please don’t mix or stir. Just let it cook gently for 10 mins.
• Once cooked, take a thin long stirrer and mix well.
• Finally it should look and feel like the consistency of a wheat dough used for chappati, only slightly softer and more moist.
• In case you feel the mixture is still powdery and dry, add a little boiling water and mix, till you get a lump free dough. Shape it to a ball and enjoy hot with your favorite curry.

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10. Ragi Iddli – Best Monday Morning Breakfast!

Monday mornings are best when you get to have hot idli and sambhar! The gets better when you innovate and make it with Ragi.
I always try to add a handful of Ragi whenever possible, since its a power house of calcium! It has 10 times more calcium than wheat or rice.

Soaking Time: 2-3 Hours
Fermenting Time: 6-8 Hours
Cooking Time: 10 mins
Ingredients:
• Whole Ragi Grains – 1 Cup
• Kodo Millet – 1 Cup
• Rice – 1/2 Cup
• Udad Dal – 3/4th to 1 Cup
• Rice Flakes/Poha – 3 Tsp

Note: Add the Whole millet (Ragi/Kodo) it will bring in more fibre, minerals, anti-oxidants and phytochemicals. Kodo millet is added to substitute the role of rice.

Method:
• Wash and soak all the grains for 4-5 hours. Grind them together to make a smooth batter. Cover the batter with a lid and leave it to ferment for 8 hours.
• Grease the idli pan with oil, pour batter, steam for 10 minutes just like how you make regular idlis. Serve hot with chutney or sambhar!

Our kid’s are our future… So healthy kid’s means healthy future!!

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