You’ve met the lil’ connoisseur before! This little guy loves yummy mom-made food and now insists that he eat it all on his own…

 

So his super mommy has come up with a bunch of new concoctions that are perfect for his tiny fingers. And here I am, sharing all those toddler finger food recipes that my sister, Deepti, makes especially for him. I hope her simple and incredibly easy ideas will inspire you to try them for your lil’ connoisseur!

 

(The babyfood recipes posted here are for toddlers over 12 months of age. Please note that some ingredients may not be suitable for your baby. Use your discretion to substitute ingredients in the recipes below)

 

Savory Mini French Toast

1 large egg

1 tbsp mild cheddar cheese, grated

1 spring onion, only white and light green parts, minced

salt

a pinch of fine ground black pepper (optional)

a pinch of cayenne pepper (optional)

1 spring of cilantro, minced

1 slice bread, you favorite kind, edges trimmed and discarded and cut in 4 squares

1 tbsp butter, for frying

In a shallow bowl, beat the egg and season with salt , pepper and cayenne pepper. Add the minced spring onion, chilantro, cheese and mix well.

Soak the bread squares in the egg mixture for a couple of mins on one side and then flip and let it soak for another min or two.

In the meantime, preheat a flat pan over medium high heat. Drop a tbsp of butter on the pan and when it melts, place the soaked bread squares on to the hot pan and  cook until golden brown, approximately 2 to 3 mins per side. Remove from pan and cool for a couple mins. Serve with ketchup or potato hash browns.

Red & Green Idlis

(Flavored Rice & Split Black Lentil Cakes)

Here’s a great idea to flavor your kids’ food and sneak in some healthy vegetables. Simply add vegetable purées to homemade or store-bought idli batter (available at all Indian stores) and see your how kids gobble up colorful idlis!

Here are a couple of ideas –

1. Boil a handful of each – baby spinach leaves and broccoli florets along with a smashed garlic clove , salt and black pepper. Once cooked, let it cool and then purée in a blender and add to the batter.
2. Boil together 1 small red bell peppers, 1 medium carrot and a tomato along with a smashed garlic clove, salt and black pepper. Once cooked, let it cool and then purée in a blender. Pass it through a sieve to remove red pepper and tomato skins  and then add to the batter.

Cook idlis as usual and serve warm – room temperature to your kids.

Veggie Oatmeal & Rice Patties

Makes about 4-5 2-inch diameter patties

 1/4 cup frozen mixed vegetables, thawed (including corn, peas, carrots, etc)

1 small potato, peeled and diced

1/4 cup, cooked rice

1/4 cup prepared oatmeal cereal for babies

1-2 tbsp mild cheddar cheese, grated

1-2 tbsp bread crumbs

a couple pinches garlic powder

a pinch of cayenne powder (optional)

a pinch of garam masala or ground cumin (optional)

salt

1-2 tbsp butter/oil, for frying

Boil the vegetables and potatoes, till the potatoes are tender. Drain water and mash.

Add the cooked rice and cooked oatmeal along with cheese, bread crumbs, garlic powder, pinch of cayenne pepper, salt and cumin powder or garam masala and mix well. Divide into equal parts and form them into patties. Let them rest in refrigerator for 10-15 mins if possible.

Preheat a flat pan over medium heat. Melt butter or heat oil. Transfer patties to the pan and cook on both sides till golden brown. Serve warm or at room temperature with ketchup or straight up.

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