Thinking about the ways to give Kerala banana to your little one?
Worried about your little one rejecting the Kerala banana mash?
Don’t be. Today I present to you the 13 Kerala banana recipes for babies, toddlers and kids.
Born and brought up in Kerala, I had never seen the usage of long golden/yellow bananas. The green colored robusta, kerala banana, a reddish-pink variety known as chenkadali and the poovan, elaichi or elakki bananas are the only ones I had seen there.
During my childhood days, the marriage reception party was quite simple. The menu consisted of 1 laddu/ jalebi in a paper packet, a spicy mixture again in a small paper packet, 1 fried banana fritter and a robusta banana (green peeled long variety) all served in a paper plate. I have fond memories of taking back home the packets of mixture, laddu and robusta banana served to me.
At that time, robusta variety was considered a luxury that would be served only during marriage receptions where as kerala bananas were available for each and every occasion.
Now that I am in Mumbai, all those memories get refreshed with each of my visits to the Malayalee store here to buy kerala bananas for my daughter.
Kerala bananas also known as nenthran or nenthra bale when combined with ghee is excellent for weight gain in babies. You can also read about Top 15 Foods for Weight Gain in Babies and Kids
The beauty of kerala bananas is that they will never cause you cold or cough. It’s a sure shot food given to women in Kerala right from pregnancy.
It is also given to babies and kids throughout their life in one form or the other like raw banana powder porridge, banana fritters, steamed bananas to name a few.
You can also read about the 10 Things to Know About Raw Banana Powder Porridge.
13 Kerala banana recipes for babies and toddlers:
I had given Kerala banana mash and raw banana powder porridge to Anshika till she was 1.
The growing girl doesn’t accept the porridges or banana mash anymore. She is more prone to her version of healthy foods these days (read chocolates and cakes).
If your kid is like mine, who doesn’t accept the kerala banana as it is, try out these healthy kerala banana recipes or nendran banana recipes for babies/ kids.
1. Pazham nurukku or Steamed kerala banana with jaggery
Steamed banana pieces with jaggery known as pazham nuruku is ideal breakfast for toddlers of 1 year and above. Again it forms an integral part of Onam sadya in Kerala.
Cut 1 unpeeled kerala banana into 4 to 5 pieces and steam it in an idli cooker or steamer with jaggery for 8 to 10 minutes. Serve warm.
2. Kerala Banana Mash or nenthrapazha kurukku
Ok it’s a wee bit different from the banana mash we have mentioned earlier in the post.
Steam 1 kerala banana. Remove the black seeds inside. Mash it with a fork or blend into a puree consistency.
Heat a kadai with a tablespoon of ghee and add jaggery or sugar to it. Let it melt completely. Add the blended banana puree. Cook till the banana-jaggery mixture is cooked and forms a thick consistency.
Yummy kerala banana puree or nenthrapazha kurukku is ready.
This is ideal for babies of 8 months and above if you are using jaggery. However if the banana is sweet, then you may omit the jaggery completely.
Steam 2 not-so-ripe kerala bananas. Remove the black seeds inside and mash well.
Heat a kadai with ghee. Stir-fry cashew nuts, raisins, freshly grated coconut. Mix sugar and cardamom powder to this mix. Remove from stove and let the mixture cool well.
Apply ghee on both palms. Divide the mashed banana into small evenly sized balls.
Stuff the filling into the mashed banana and make a cylindrical shape with ends sealed as shown in the picture.
Deep fry the unnakayas till golden and serve them hot.
Traditionally scrambled eggs are also used as filling in the unnakaya recipe.
4. Nenthrapazha pradhaman or Kerala banana kheer
This kheer is made during auspicious occasions in Kerala like Onam, vishu, birthdays etc.
Here the nenthrapazha kurukku is made and the second (thin) milk of coconut is added on medium flame. Once the rawness of coconut milk is gone, add in the first thick milk of coconut and cardamom powder. Garnish with cashews and raisins that is roasted in ghee.
This kheer or kerala banana payasam is quite heavy. It is ideal for toddlers of 2 years and above.
5. Nenthrapazha puttu or Ethapazha puttu:
‘Puttu’ is the staple breakfast of South Kerala. Here the roasted rice flour and coconut is decked in layers and steam cooked in a vessel called ‘puttu kutti’.
To make nenthrapazha puttu, chop peeled bananas finely and keep aside. Roast 1 cup of rice flour till it emanates an aroma. Let it cool.
Add rice flour and salt in a bowl. You can use water or coconut water a little by little to make a crumbled mixture. Make sure that no lumps are formed in the semi-wet mixture.
Take the puttu kutti and fill in different layers of crumbled wet rice flour, fresh grated coconut and chopped bananas. The steam from the boiling water in the pot comes out through the ‘kutti’ after 8 to 10 minutes. It’s an indicator that the puttu is well cooked. Serve warm with ghee.
Nenthrapazha puttu is excellent for toddlers of 1 year and above.
6. Ghee roasted bananas
Cut kerala bananas into round slices of about 1 inch thickness.
Heat ghee in a kadai and add the banana slices. Once it starts changing color, add the sugar on top of it and sauté till the sugar caramelizes on the banana slices.
Ghee roasted bananas can be served as breakfast or evening snack for your baby if he is of age 1 year and above.
7. Pazham pori or kerala banana fritters
Visit a street food corner in Kerala during the evening time. Pazham pori, ethakappam or banana fritters is an important item among the many deep fried evening snacks there.
‘Pazham’ means banana and ‘pori’ is frying. So it’s basically ‘fried banana’ coated with a batter.
Pazham pori is traditionally made using maida as the coating. But here we can make it using atta or whole-wheat flour, as it’s the healthiest option.
Slice banana into thin wafer pieces. Make a batter using of 1/2-cup atta, 1-tablespoon rice flour, 2-tablespoon sugar, and a pinch of salt with water. The batter should be thicker than the idli batter.
Dip the slices in this batter and deep fry in hot oil. Drain the excess oil and serve hot to your toddler as an evening snack.
Banana fritters are an excellent snack for toddlers of 1 year and above.
8. Oats and banana unniyappam
Dry roast oats for a few minutes. Grind into a fine powder. Mash the ripe bananas and add to the oats mixture adding cooled boiled milk as required.
Melt jaggery and add to this mixture. Prepare a batter.
Pour a ladle of the batter into a dumpling tava and cook it well by turning sides. Once browned, take it off and drain the excess oil.
Serve it to babies of 11 months and above.
9. Kerala banana halwa
Steam the unpeeled bananas in a steamer or idli cooker. Once steamed well, remove the black seeds and blend to a fine paste along with milk and sugar.
Heat ghee in a kadai. Fry the dry fruits (cashews and raisins) and keep aside. In the same tawa, add the blended mixture and cook on low flame till the mixture thickens by stirring continuously.
The right consistency of the halwa is attained when a little bit of it when taken in between your thumb and forefinger doesn’t stick.
To this add the cardamom powder and mix well.
Take a greased pan and transfer the mixture. Spread it evenly. Garnish with the fried cashews and kismis. Once cooled, cut into desired shape.
You can also use raw banana powder to make halwa in the above way mentioned.
10. Kerala banana cake
Here is a kerala banana cake for toddlers and kids.
Blend 1 banana, 2 whole eggs, 7 tablespoons of powdered sugar and ½ teaspoon cardamom powder to a fine puree. Grease a thick-bottomed saucepan and pour the mixture. Keep cooking the mixture undisturbed on low flame.
Check if the cake has cooked by inserting a knife into it. If it comes clean, banana cake is ready to be cut and served.
Kerala banana cake can be given to toddlers of 1 year and above.
11. Nenthrapazha pulissery:
This pulissery can be served as a side dish to roti, rice and even dosa for toddlers of 1 year and above. It is slightly sweet and tangy in taste.
Cut 2 nenthrapazham into large pieces. Boil it with turmeric powder, pepper powder and salt in a little water for about 10 minutes.
Grind coconut and green chilies into a fine paste. Add it to the cooked banana. Add 1/2 cup of water and let it boil.
Whisk the curd and add to the mixture while keeping the flame on low. Simmer till it starts foaming. Never allow it to boil, as the curd will disintegrate.
Make a tadka of mustard seeds, curry leaves, a pinch of fenugreek seeds and one red chilly. Pour over the curry.
12. Nenthrapazha patthiris
Nenthrapazha patthris are usually made during Ramzan.
My daughter loved these patthiris though she hates the kerala bananas. I felt so happy that she didn’t know the main ingredient cleverly sneaked in by me and ate as if it’s a new favorite of hers.
If you have overripe bananas at home, this is a must do recipe.
Mash 2 ripe bananas with hand. Add 1-cup rice flour to this. Knead dough out of this with salt and water. You can also add sugar to this mixture.
Heat oil. Dip both your hands in cold water and make flattened balls out of the dough. Deep fry till golden.
Kerala banana patthiris make an excellent evening snack.
13. Kerala Banana Dosa
Boil or steam bananas. Peel the skin. Mash and mix it with dosa batter and grind the mixture in a mixie to get a pureed consistency batter. Make dosas with this batter.
Hope this article on kerala banana recipes for babies and kids gave ideas on how to give kerala bananas in different forms.
Is your little one fond of kerala bananas or is he/she like mine who hates it?
Are there any other kerala banana recipes that you have tried? Do share with me in comments please.