Noodles is the ‘go to’ food in many Nigerian families and many busy mums resort to it as the fastest cooking (wrong perception i say…lots of recipes here for you) food to serve their children or put in their lunchbox. It can be so bad that children don’t even know the name of any other food because their breakfast, lunch and dinner revolves around ‘indomie’…the most popular brand. I don’t have anything against giving noodles to kids except that style of serving it to them just ‘boiled’ plain with the sachet contents.
Noodles is a staple food in most Asian countries and is eaten by both kids and adults. It is of the same family with spaghetti and other pastas which are all made of wheat flour, however noodles has some other added other ingredients like oil, salt and thickeners that helps bind it together. They also come with sachets of seasoning powder which contains extra salt and sugar, as well as other taste enhancers which i am personally not comfortable with.
So, while i will accept noodles on its own as a food for kids, the sachet seasoning that comes with it is definitely a no-no for me. If i am making noodles, i do away with that sachet seasoning and instead use tomato stew or sauce to make it tasty. I also add other garnishings to make it extra nutritious and more filling for the growing child…the packaging of all the various brands of noodles have some sort of healthy garnishings on them as well and it should be a good pointer to you that it is best eaten that way.
How to Make Noodles for my Kids
Ultimately, you know what vegetables your child enjoys more, whilst it is also good to encourage him/her to try others too. So use vegetables like carrots, peas, sweetcorn, broccoli, cauliflower, cucumber or green leafy veggies like ugu, greens or efo (a little scent leaf to enhance flavour) to make their noodles. Also include proteins like fish, chicken, beef, beans, eggs so that they get all the nutritional benefits for their development.
There are various ways of making noodles and here is the easiest, straightforward and no-hassles way of making a moist yummy indomie meal for your child.
- Packet of noodles
- Green peas and carrots (diced)
- 1-2 tablespoon of tomato stew
- 1½ cups chicken, beef or fish stock or water
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- Put stock or water in pot and bring to boil.
- Add the stew, noodles and carrots.
- Stir and allow to cook for 3-5 minutes till soft. Ensure there is still at least a quarter of liquid left in the pot. It will be soaked up by the noodles and give it a moist texture as against a dry one.
- Add the peas, stir and bring down to retain freshness. The heat from the pot will cook them well.