Lentils are nutritious but children show least interest in eating regular home cooked food on daily basis. The ideal way would be to incorporate an element that children love within a common recipe and emphasizing on the fusion. Children love pasta and pasta being made from durum wheat is nutritious too. This lentil soup with pasta is a healthy and tasty complete meal option for your little one.
INGREDIENTS (250 ml cup used)
- Pasta (fusili, penne or any other variety that your child loves) – ¾ cup
- Lentil – ¼ cup (Whole Masoor dal or combination of Toor, Yellow Moong and Masoor dal)
- Onion – 1 small, chopped
- Tomato – 2 medium, chopped
- Ghee – 1 teaspoon
- Olive oil or refined oil – 1 tablespoon
- Water – as required
For tempering and garnish
- Cumin seeds – 1 teaspoon
- Turmeric powder – ¼ teaspoon
- Dried mango powder – 1 teaspoon
- Green chilly – 1, de-seeded and finely chopped
- Ginger – 1 teaspoon, freshly grated
- Garlic – 3 cloves, pounded
- Coriander powder – 1 teaspoon
- Sugar – 1 teaspoon
- Asafoetida – a pinch
- Dried fenugreek leaves – 1 teaspoon
- Coriander leaves – ¼ cup, finely chopped
- Lemon – 1, juice freshly squeezed
METHOD OF PREPARATION
- In a large pan heat water and add the pasta. Let them boil till they soften. Pasta should always be cooked to “al dente” (firm to the bite). Drain water and toss them lightly in olive oil, and dried herbs mixture (rosemary, thyme, oregano). Keep the tossed pasta aside.
- Pressure cook the dal to in adequate water with turmeric power and salt. Once the steam escapes, mash the dal coarsely.
- Heat oil in a large cooking pot and add the cumin seeds. Once they begin to crackle, add the asafoetida, giner, garlic, green chilly and sauté for a minute or so.
- Add the onions and sauté them till they turn translucent.
- Add the tomatoes and cook on medium heat until they turn soft and mushy.
- Next, add the boiled dal, dried mango powder, coriander powder, sugar and enough water for soupy consistency. Let the mixture simmer for 4 to 5 minutes on low flame.
- Add the pasta to the soup and bring it to a boil.
- Add the lemon juice, coriander leaves and let the soup simmer on low flame for 2 to 3 minutes.
- Let the soup rest for 5 minutes or so, before serving.
- Masoor dal is a rich source of protein essential for the overall growth and development of your baby. For vegetarian families, lentils are a good source of plant protein. 100 grams of Masoor dal provides 346 calories and is a great source of protein.
- 100 grams of uncooked pasta has 288 calories, 47 IU of vitamin A, 176 mcg of folate, 15 mg of calcium, 46 mg of magnesium and 163 mg of phosphorus.