'Cooking for baby' records my experiences with feeding our little girl, Abhi, who loves variety in food, just like me ! Finding newer food options to keep her interested has been a challenge - sometimes exasperating but more often, exciting!

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Friday, July 2, 2010

Wheat milk porridge

8 months and above

Wheat milk porridge is extremely delicious and I give it as a special treat to little Abhi. I do not make it frequently because it takes a little extra time. Definitely worth the effort, do try this for your baby.

I've used broken wheat (burghul) belonging to the Sambha variety which is dark brown, high in protien and nutrients. You can also use whole wheat grains for this but make sure the soaking time is increased to overnight.

Pic 1 : Broken wheat soaked, drained, and ready to be ground

Broken wheat - 1 tablespoon
Jaggery syrup - 1 teaspoon
Cardamom - 2 or 3 grains from a pod
Fresh coconut milk - 2 or 3 teaspoons
Water - a cup or more if required

Soak broken wheat for 1 or 2 hours. Pulverize to smooth paste adding a little warm water and the cardamom. Drape a thin muslin cloth/ cheese cloth/ light cotton cloth over the mouth of a vessal. Secure the cloth around the vessal with a string or rubber band. Strain the wheat paste through this. Coax out the milk by stirring with a spoon. Cover the cloth and vessal with a lid allow the milk to slowly trickle out (15 minutes or so). Finally, remove the string and twist cloth to squeeze out all the milk (refer picture 3).The white whey you get thus is wheat milk.

Pic 2: The filtering process

Pic 3: Squeezing out the milk completely

Transfer the wheat milk into a thick bottomed vessal. Mix in a cup of water. On slow flame allow to simmer for about 10 minutes stirring all the while (the stirring bit is important or else the milk congeals unevenly and burns). Add more water if mixture becomes too thick. When you see the milk taking on a glazy look, add in the jaggery syrup and coconut milk. Stir for a couple more minutes and take off flame.

Pic 4: Wheat milk porridge

To extract coconut milk
I do not use readymade coconut milk, organic or otherwise, in baby food. Extracting the small quantity of milk required for your little one is quite easy. Here is how:

Grated or shaved coconut - 2 tablespoons
Warm water - 2 teaspoons

Put the coconut and water in a processor/mixie and grind for a couple of minutes. Place a sieve or very thin muslin over a vessel. Take out the coconut mixure by hand, hold over sieve and use your hands to squeeze out the milk.

Nutrition information

Wheat - rich in Vitamin B6, iron, folate, zinc, manganese, phospherous etc. Wheat is also said to maintain good haemoglobin levels and to prevent childhood asthma.

Jaggery - iron rich

Coconut milk - a delicious source of healthy omega 3 fats and calcium

wheatberry on Foodista