If anything, with parenting my boy, I want to assure myself and my child that I am doing my best. When I eventually look back at his wonderful, chaotic and fun and deeply pleasurable childhood I want to know that I did my best. But it doesn’t have to be perfect, to be wonderful does it.
And that is why we have had a LOT of kale cooking in our home over the last three months. We have spent three months being cautious and gentle with my boy following him being unwell. I have come to think of gentler activities to keep his mind and body content and find ways to preoccupy his attention during conversations with doctors and also, I have learned ways to pump his little body with as much goodness through food, to help him along.
Kale, for all its vitamin C, Vitamin A, Vitamin K, iron properties seemed an obvious help but how to get into a 4-year old in decent quantities? I tried kale crisps, which seemed a hit but the initial enthusiasm wavered. We did better with kale khichdi and kale sneaked into pasta sauces although the clear winner has been kale thepla (spiced Gujarati influenced chapatti), for all their green goodness, portability, ease of independent eating for a child and also share-ability, because my child enjoys sharing his food with friends.
They do have a gorgeous colour and have a delicate aroma of the sea. I will be packing them for lunches at the zoo, park, farm and other sunny destinations this summer. The only downside is that to make them, much like parenting, is a little labour of love. They are worth it though, aren’t they?
Makes 14 chapattis
3-4 cloves of garlic, minced
2 cups of chappati flour
2-3 tbsp. vegetable oil
½ tsp. ground turmeric
A pinch of ajwain seeds
A small bowl of oil, for greasing the chappati
- Combine the water and the kale and process them into a kale juice, or at least a very fine texture of kale.
- Take a large, wide bowl (not one that is deep) and put the flour into the bowl. Create a well in the middle and pour in the oil.
- Rub the oil into the flour, so that its evenly blended into a fine crumb.
- Now add the salt, turmeric and ajwain seeds into the flour and ensure even distribution.
- Add the garlic and then the kale ‘juice’ and then knead the dough.
- Form 14 equally sized balls and then lightly flatten them.
- Heat a non-stick pan and roll the chapatti into thin circles before placing them individually on a pan. Once one side is cooked, drizzle oil onto it and then flip it over.