Fibre rich & nutritious, 'kurukku' or porridge is excellent for weight gain in infants

Feeding baby
Representative image: Shutterstock/wrangler

Millets are fibrous than many other grains that are often consumed as staples. Moreover, they are storehouse of protein, potassium and minerals too. As millets contain iron, people with anaemia should include them in their regular diet. Millets have the ability to prevent atherosclerosis or stiffening of the blood vessels that carry oxygen and nutrients from the heart to the rest of the body. As it is less fatty and easily digestible, millets are excellent food for infants and adults alike. They help in reducing the blood sugar level and cholesterol while improving the growth of bones and preventing anaemia in babies.

Millet porridge for infants

Babies could be introduced to solid food as soon as they turn six months old. By that time, their salivary glands begin to function in order to aid digestion. In case the mother is not able to produce enough breast milk, then it is safe to start feeding porridges that are easy to digest at three months. Porridges could be given until the child turns one when he/she starts eating regular food. However, tasty and nutritious porridges could be included in their diet until three years if the child is interested in trying all kinds of food.

Millets and plantain powder are the best to make porridges. These are loaded with calcium and iron which makes the bones and teeth stronger. Plantain powder contain healthy fibres that aid digestion. Besides, it is an excellent food item that helps in weight gain. Adding Amukkuram or Indian ginseng powder in the porridge is excellent for children who are under weight. Besides, jungle geranium, almonds, liquorice and sweet flag too could be added to pack in that extra nutrition. As per ayurveda, these ingredients would help in brain development. An ayurvedic porridge made with Nardostachys Jatamansi, curry leaves, wild turmeric, long pepper, gooseberry, Indian sarapilla and sweet flag is excellent to boost intelligence. Brahmi or bacopa monnieri is tempered in milk and added into this porridge as the final step to increase its potency.

Ragi kurukku

In states like Karnataka, millets - especially ragi - and arrowroot (koova) are part of their staple diet. They include tasty porridge made with millets at least once in their daily meal. It is excellent to keep away exhaustion and provide energy and strength to the body. However, porridges aren’t usually enjoyed by grown ups here as it is often labelled a nutritious food for infants. Instead, they consume dishes like idli and dosa made with millet powder. Nutrition experts vouch for the incredible health benefits of millets that could be enjoyed by both infants and adults alike. Here is how to easily make millet porridge at home. The porridge is slightly sweet and is easily digestible too

Ragi kurukku
Ragi kurukku. Photo: Asha Rajanarayanan


2 glasses whole ragi (finger millet)

4 glasses water

150 gm jaggery

1 glass milk (optional)


Soak the whole millets in water for at least an hour

Grind them in a mixer jar by adding enough water

Strain the mixture

Cook this millet liquid on simmer

Add jaggery

When the porridge begins to thicken add milk

Cook until it reaches the right consistency

Enjoy the millet porridge as a refreshing evening snack or a mid-day meal.

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