Hi dear mommies,
I am so glad to present you the very first recipe in the toddler diet series. As you might have read in my previous post, the recipes that I will be adding to this series will be reviewed based on its nutritional content by Dr. Frieda Fontaine, NDTR. I added this feature to this blog because I believe it is a fellow mom’s responsibility to keep other mommies informed about the food we offer to our precious little ones.
The first ever recipe in this series is Spinach- Lentil Soup, which is one of our favorites. My toddler likes it very much because of the variety of flavors present in it. This is a very simple recipe and you need just a few basic ingredients and can be prepared within 30 minutes. Okay, now lets check out the ingredients and procedure.
Spinach – Lentil soup Ingredients :
Prep time : 10 mins Cooking time : 20 mins Serves : 3 people
- Yellow Lentils – 1 cup
- Red onion (chopped into thin slices) – 1
- Garlic cloves – 8 to 10
- Tomatoes (finely chopped) – 1
- Carrots (finely chopped) – 1
- Cumin powder – 1 Teaspoon
- Spinach (finely chopped) – 1 cup
- Beet spinach (finely chopped) -1/2 cup
- Butter – 1 tablespoon
- Bay leaves – 1
- Salt – as required
- Pepper – as required
- Coriander leaves (finely chopped) – 1/2 cup
- Turmeric powder – 1 Teaspoon
- Cook yellow lentils in a large pan or a pressure cooker.
- Simultaneously, heat another large pan and add butter, chopped onions, bay leaf and fry till onions become translucent.
- Now add the garlic cloves, tomatoes and carrots and fry for few minutes.
- Add water, required salt and allow it to boil in low flame.
- Keep the cooked lentils in a separate pan and to that, add the vegetables and allow to cook together for few minutes.
- Add salt, turmeric powder, cumin powder and when it is almost done, add the spinach leaves and stir well for 2 to 3 minutes.
- Add coriander leaves and pepper just before serving.
Dr. Freida Fontaine’s comments on Spinach – Lentil Soup :
The soup sounds delicious. It’s good enough for adults to eat too! Lentils are a great way to make sure your toddler is getting a good amount of fiber and vegetable protein. The vegetables provide vitamins and minerals that are essential to the growth and development of a toddler. I would recommend the soup be pureed, especially if the toddler is getting used to eating soup or pungent vegetables such as onions and garlic. Once the lentils and vegetables are tender, you can use a hand blender to puree it.
This also combines all the wonderful flavors together. The onion, garlic, and turmeric are great for a growing child’s immune system, especially in the winter when children (and parents) come down with the flu. The soup should be eaten within three to five days. You can also freeze it for several months without the soup losing its nutrient value. I would also emphasize that with this recipe (or any other recipe that introduces your toddler to new foods and flavors), should be given in small amounts.
It’s important to ensure your toddler tolerates it well before increasing portion sizes. Last, keep in mind that your toddler won’t fall in love with every recipe. Experimentation is key until you find what works.
Note : Dr. Frieda Fontaine, credentialed by the Commission on Dietetic Registration (CDR) as a Nutrition and Dietetic Technician, Registered (NDTR). She has experience as Dietary Director in skilled nursing facilities and she also works as a private Nutrition Counselor. To know everything about diet and nutrition and for expert tips and advice, follow her blog, Let’s discuss nutrition.
I hope this recipe will be loved by your toddlers too. Please do try and let me know in the comments how the soup came out! If you have any doubts, questions or feedback, you can leave them in the comments or you can write to firstname.lastname@example.org