My son, all of 6 years, completely spoilt, but the one man who makes my heart skip a beat, with his ‘I love you mum’, is an extremely picky eater. The challenge here lies in the fact that I do not credit myself as being a great cook. Yet, I need to ensure that my child gets tasty, wholesome food every day.
Fortunately, a couple of my friends can work magic in the kitchen; and then there is the internet☺, one of the largest reservoirs of information in the present times. The trick here is to whip up a meal that is both yummy and healthy (we, mums… know this). Food is obviously delicious if it appeals to our taste buds. Yet, if I take my son as an example, the food that he would most definitely eat without an iota of persuasion, should also look and smell divine.
**1.** **Chapattis are nutritious** and easy to prepare.
• Make rolls with fillings like cottage cheese, sautéed vegetables, chicken and egg.
• You can use scrambled egg with onions and garlic; steamed and sautéed chicken with onions, garlic and some green pepper.
**2 Idlis are extremely delicious**
• With some readymade batter and an idli maker, yummy idlis are ready in a jiffy.
• My son prefers it with tomato chutney, which is easy to prepare
• Sauté about 2 cloves of garlic in 1 tbsp of oil (olive).
• Cook about 1 cup of chopped tomatoes with it, add some salt and pepper, blend it (once cool)
• Sauté some mustard seeds and curry leaves in ½ tbsp of oil and pour it over the blended mix. The chutney is ready.
**3. Pancakes** are easy to prepare.
• You get the ‘ready to make’ mix.
• Prepare them like ‘cheela’ (refer to the next recipe)
• Serve with honey.
**4** My son loves my **oats cheela**
• I use about 200 gm oats (powdered), 50 gm besan (gram flour), 2 onions, finely chopped, 2 cloves of garlic (paste), and some finely chopped coriander, salt and jeera powder.
• Combine all the ingredients in a bowl. Add some water to make a paste
• Cook it like a pancake
• Dhaniya pudina chatni is an ideal accompaniment. You need about a cup each of chopped coriander and mint leaves, 1 tbsp ginger paste, juice of half a lemon and salt
• Grind them together in a blender and the chutney is ready.
**5** I love to make **cheese and corn pizzas** with slices of bread
• We need about 3 slices of bread, 1 chopped onion, ½ a cup grated cheese, a cup of steamed corn and salt
• Toast the bread and cut it into triangular pieces (6)
• Sauté the onions and the corn, add the cheese and salt to taste
• Butter the bread, spread the sautéed mix on each of the pieces, and microwave for a couple of minutes. Pizza time kids!
**6** ‘Desi’ version of **pasta**
• Cook the pasta in water, with a pinch of salt and a hint of oil
• Once cooked, drain the water and run the pasta through some cold water and put it aside
• Next sauté one chopped onion, 2 finally chopped garlic cloves and 1 tomato in some olive oil
• Then add vegetables to it. You can choose what your child likes. I opt for some chopped carrot, broccoli and corn
• Once the veggies are done, add the cooked pasta to it (I prefer to add only salt to it)
• Once done, garnish it with some grated cheese and coriander.
**7** **Sandwiches** are easy to make, too. You can grill them or prepare regular ones with cucumber, tomato and cheese.
The list is endless. I have made my life in the kitchen easier, by chalking out a weekly menu; I follow it totally. So mums, let your creative juices flow. Have fun cooking and your kids will have fun eating☺.
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