Monday, January 2, 2012

Green Cabbage Scramble

Equally simple. Equally delicious. Equally nutritious as the Red Cabbage Scramble. I just added a pinch of Chilli Powder, turmeric and salt for some additional flavor.

Green Cabbage Scramble

Thursday, December 29, 2011

Carrot Stir Fry

Carrot is one of the few vegetables Lil Bee loves. However she does not like them raw so I try to incorporate it in her diet in other ways. Like in her rice porridge. Or her Pasta. Or just roast it in a little oil. Lil Bee also loves noodles so when she saw me grating the carrots, she thought it was noodles and wanted to try. Of course I jumped and fetched the spoon to make sure the moment did not pass.
This is a simple Carrot stir fry. I do not think it even warrants a recipe. Just a splash of oil, Mustard seeds are optional, add grated carrots and season with salt and pepper if required. Done.

Color Sorting 1

This is a fun activity I did today. I just sorted out all her toys by color and called them out. She is not old enough to say the colors other than blue but I get a feeling that pretty soon she will join me in sorting it out and naming the colors. Call me silly but I must add I had fun sorting !

Wednesday, December 21, 2011

Simple Mashed Potatoes

Simple Mashed Potatoes are the reason that I wish I were closer to home. My mother-in-law was my fairy godmother one day when I was lost wondering what to make for Lil Bee for her evening snack. She quickly put the potato in the microwave, added milk and butter and that was it. A hearty and tasty snack was ready.

You will need:
Half of a regular sized potato
1 tspn butter
1 to 2 Tbspn Milk
A pinch of salt
Pepper (optional)

Lets Begin:
-Wash and clean the potato. Place it in a microwave safe bowl and fill with water till potato is submerged. Be careful not to overfill with water as it may boil over.
-Microwave for 4 to 5 minutes. Check with a fork to see if potato is soft. Depending on the microwave power you may need to adjust your timing.
-Carefully peel the skin from the potato. While hot, add the butter.
-Mash well with a potato masher or the back of a spoon and ensure no lumps remain.
-Add salt. Add  milk slowly to get your desired consistency.

Tuesday, December 20, 2011

Nutritional Guide for Toddlers

At Lil Bee's 12 month physical, I expressed my concern about her decreasing appetite She is an active, happy child but I felt her eating habits had changed. Her pediatrician assured me, not in a way I was expecting, that this was normal. He said as the days go by she will start throwing tantrums, refuse to eat, start becoming picky, leading you to believe she is going to be anorexic soon. She is nearly 19 months now and I know I picked a great pediatrician because he was right on all counts.

Toddlers go through a development phase where they are more interested in exploring the world around them rather than eat veges from a plate. I try to ensure she has somewhat of a balanced diet even if she eats as she pleases. I use this chart as a guide and take it as a personal challenge. Of course I do not succeed in getting her to eat everything everyday but on the days she comes close, I feel a sense of achievement. You will understand what I am talking about if you have a picky toddler.

The chart ( from is intended for children between 2-3 years old. More information is available here.

Food Group Daily Amount for 2-Year-Olds Daily Amount for 3-Year-Olds Help With Servings
Grains 3 ounces, half from whole-grain sources 4-5 ounces, half from whole-grain sources One ounce equals: 1 slice of bread, 1 cup of ready-to-eat cereal, or ½ cup of cooked rice, cooked pasta, or cooked cereal.
Vegetables 1 cup 1½ cups Use measuring cups to check amounts. Serve veggies that are soft, cut in small pieces, and well cooked to prevent choking.
Fruits 1 cup 1 cup Use measuring cups to check amounts. An 8- to 9-inch banana equals 1 cup.
Milk 2 cups 2 cups One cup equals: 1 cup of milk or yogurt, 1½ ounces of natural cheese, or 2 ounces of processed cheese.
Meat & Beans 2 ounces 3-4 ounces One ounce equals: 1 ounce of meat, poultry or fish, ¼ cup cooked dry beans, or 1 egg.

Here is the link to the USDA recommended food pyramid. A nice one to put up on your refrigerator.

Please note that this is only a guide. I do not force feed or encourage the same. In some strange way toddlers eat what they want to and find hidden energy for everything they want to ! This is just a guide for me to make sure that I am providing her a balanced diet.

Sunday, December 18, 2011

Easy Playdough at Home

I never knew I could make playdough at home and when I realized I could, I never thought it would be this easy. All you have to do is mix the ingredients and heat it on the stove top, stirring continuously for three to four minutes or until you see the dough change consistency. You will notice that the dough stops sticking to the side of the pan and starts forming a ball. Take it out and knead till it is soft. Add your food colors and you are ready to play.

Just mix , warm and knead:

1/2 cup All Purpose Flour
1/2 cup water
1/4 cup Salt
2 Tbpsn Oil
1/2 tsp Baking Powder

Saturday, December 17, 2011

Trip to the Library

Storytime at the library is a fun activity to do with your little one. It usually is around 20 to 30 minutes, just enough to keep the busy bodies engaged before they dart off to find something else. With music, stories, rhymes, puppets..storytime has lot of variety to ensure 20 minutes of continuous entertainment.

After storytime I take Lil Bee to the children section where she enjoys picking out board books for the week.These days she is into identifying day to day things like flowers, cars, buckets and so on. She also pretends to sign out for the books, guess it makes her feel all grown up.

At home she goes through the books for a good 10 minutes on her own before asking me to join her. Research has found that the human brain develops the most during the first five years of life. It is amazing to see how quickly they grasp words and concepts. I see her keenly listening  as I read and I know she has registered the way the word sounds even though she is unable to say it herself.

I sure hope libraries are around for a long time to come because I see bookshops closing down left, right and center. I used to love reading books as a kid and even now prefer to curl up with a book and hot tea instead of a tablet PC. There is something about turning a page that feels so right !