Doorbell rings feebly
Mummy runs towards the door in slow-mo, with the excitement of a bollywood ‘Ma..’
Bunty gazes blankly at his mummy’s eager and animated face.
Mummy: Come, come inside the house. How was school? What did you do today? Did all your friends come?
Bunty drags himself inside the house, or maybe his bag does that for him.
Mummy: I got you some new story books today….this series that you really like to read!
Bunty is unable to match up to the enthusiasm of his mummy. He keeps the bag down with a ‘thud’, and heads to his room.
Mummy is bestowed with a sixth sense. She checks Bunty’s bag. Her worst horrors have come alive, it seems. With a teary eye she stares at the tiffin that is still full of the meal that she packed in the morning. Sniffs
Not every home is this melodramatic, I am sure, but tiffin woes haunt most of us. Here are some tiffin ideas that you already know about…all I am doing is adding a little twist to it to make sure the boxes are licked clean!
Dal chilla pizza wrap: A traditional dal chilla will suddenly find itself riding high on the stock-market of flavour, in this form. All you need to do is create a pizza filling to do the magic. The filing comprises of grated cheese, tomato sauce, finely chopped vegetables such as capsicum, onion, boiled corn etc. Just mix the ingredients together and add in a bit of pepper. Now as you make a dal chilla or a lentil pancake, drop in the filling in the centre and roll the chilla like a wrap. Voila! Your delicious, nutritious and worthy-of-a-grand-salute dal chilla pizza wrap is ready to go.
Roasted mini idlis: Some investment may be needed here. Do buy a mini idli stand (trust me, you wont regret this!). Make bite sized idlis just as you make the normal ones. Once the idlis are scooped out from the stand, let them rest till they cool off. Meanwhile, heat some “desi ghee” or clarified butter in a pan. Add in oregano, chilli flakes or whatever seasoning your kid prefers and roast it for a few seconds only. Off goes the idlis into the pan. This is when you can turn off the gas. Gently toss them with a spatula. And before you realise, you just made a ‘best friend’ for your child out of an idli! Well done indeed!
Make your own pasta: Kids love a ‘live pasta station’ at parties, so why not give them one of theirs? But lets follow a little trick here to make sure that they don’t skip the ‘add vegetables’ part. Boil an assortment of vegetables (preferably pick varied coloured veggies). Once it cools down, puree them in a mixer. Now in a pan, add some olive oil followed by tomato puree or ketchup. Next, add in a bit of this vegetable puree and season it as per your taste. The strong color of tomato puree will not let your kid know what all goodness has gone into his food. And there! You have the most camouflaged yet nutritions potion ready for your loved one! Now all you need to do is, arrange the tiffin like a pasta station; boiled pasta, the sauce, grated cheese —all kept in separate compartments. You could keep some sachets of seasoning as well. Let the kids have fun!
Parantha discs: Lets rock-n-roll with our good old parantha! Take two small discs of flour and stuff in the filling of your child’s choice. Seal the parantha by pressing the edges and cook these discs just like you would cook a paratha, but with generous helping of ghee, till they look nice and crispy. Serve with green chutney or cheese spread.
Do drop in your comments or any other ideas to make interesting meals for kids. I am sure the mommies in the forum would love to hear it!!
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