Home Made Baby Food – Sprouted Cereals:
A baby changed everything in my life. I was one lazy creature on this earth; either my mom or my mom-in-law (depending on whom I had visited) had to bring a glass of milk to where ever I had dropped myself. Now, it is a wonder that I work so much for my daughter; looking for every possible new things and choosing the best for her; no matter how much of my effort and energy it consumes. My patience in handling everything for my daughter has reached to great heights.
If I was the same lazy bum even now, I would have relied on the instant baby food that is so easily available in the market. God made me uncomfortable with the instant mixes and also active enough to prepare these sprouted cereals.
Prepare Your Own Baby Food of Sprouted Cereals
I have restricted to just ragi, wheat and green gram and some almonds. You can add more ingredients depending on how comfortable your baby is with all these. You know your baby best. 🙂
Sprouting is a very easy technique which involves soaking the cereals in water for a certain period of time, then draining, and storing in a closed container overnight for the sprouts to appear. This is later on exposed to sunlight for drying. (I am not explaining much of this technique here, else the explanation will never end.). Crushing these dried cereals all together into a fine powder gives the perfect baby food powder.
Method of Preparation of Baby Food
- Take some powdered mixture of the cereals. (You know your baby’s appetite.)
- Add enough water and boil over low flame. Keep stirring
- While boiling, add crystal sugar or jagery or salt, whichever you feel is best for your baby.
- Stop the flame once you are satisfied that the powder is boiled considerably and notices that the mixture forms a swallow able pap.
- Once the boiled pap cools down, add formula milk or cow’s milk or butter milk (depending upon the baby’s age.)
A Plan of Sprouted Cereals for Infants
Yes, I learnt to plan for months ahead :). I never messed up with the scheduled plan I had done for my daughter. Note that my daughter is 21 months old right now. I introduced these cereals to her when she was 4.5 months old.
Ragi & Wheat for Babies – 4.5 Months
I used powdered mixture of equal amount of sprouted ragi and sprouted wheat.
Began with once a day. After about 15 days, made the feed twice a day. Added tiny pieces of crystal sugar along with the mixture while boiling. Once the preparation cooled down, I used to add some formula milk too for the added taste.
Ragi, Wheat & Sprouted Green Gram – 10 Months
I added sprouted green gram along with ragi and wheat. Of course equal amounts of all three. I replaced crystal sugar with small piece of jagery while boiling the mixture. Fed me daughter thrice a day.
Ragi, Wheat & Almonds – 12 Months Old
I added 7 to 8 almonds too while crushing other items. And I cancelled all the crystal sugar and jagery, instead I used some salt while preparing. Salt and milk do not go well. So no adding of formula milk too.
Now that my daughter is grown to have rice, chapathi soaked in milk, dosa, idli, upma; I have not stuck to thrice a day feeding of this cereal mixture. But, I give her this baby food at least once a day. (No time restriction as such). Recently I have started adding some butter milk and I observe she likes this new taste.
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Sprouted cereals are the most recommended food for infants and toddlers. Since the cereals are dried under sunlight, it can be stored in air tight containers for long without any problem. No refrigeration is required. You could also opt to heat it for few minutes in a dry pan before storing. I powder them with the dry mixer jar as and when I need.
This is readily available too from the MannaFoods brand. Ragi Rich, the first food for bonnie babies. For the very first time I had bought Ragi Rich. Then the package contents showed so many sprouted images, I decided to make my own.
(If at all you need the details of sprouting of the ingredients individually, let me know. I will be glad to prepare and explain all over)