Ragi or finger millet is rich in calcium, iron and protein. Besides being nutritious it's also gluten-free, making it an ideal choice for weaning food. It is a popular grain widely eaten in parts of rural Karnataka. Ragi has higher amount of fiber than other millet varieties. This makes the glycemic index of ragi low, which means, it helps in maintaining the blood sugar level.
- 250 gms whole grain ragi / finger millet
- 1 cup water or milk
- 1/2 teaspoon Ghee
To make sprouted ragi powder :
- Soak ragi for 12 hours.
- Drain it and leave it in a cloth or a strainer.
- Allow it to sprout for another 12 hrs.
- Roast the ragi in a hot wok till the ragi is completely dry. Alternately, spread it on a baking tray and place it in a pre-heated oven at 175 Deg C for 10 - 15 mins (or till it's crisp). Stir it once in between.
- Once dry, powder it in a mixer jar and pass it through a muslin cloth to sieve out the skin. This powder can now be stored in an air tight container.
To make ragi paste :
- When you need to feed the baby, mix 3 teaspoons of powder in a cup of water/ milk and make a paste.
- Turn on the heat. Let this mix simmer on low heat for a few minutes, stirring continuously. Ensure there are no lumps.
- Once you smell a nice aroma of ragi and get a silky texture, turn off the heat.
- Add ghee and serve warm to the baby.
- Please mix in more ragi powder to alter the consistency of the paste as you like.
- You can also use milk instead of water while feeding an older baby (please check with your doctor before starting milk).
- If you find sieving the powder in Step 5 too tedious, you can try skipping it. You need to make sure that the powder is fine ground and the baby is able to swallow the porridge made, easily. Sieving however, is still the better option.