Here's how to make easily a basic Italian dish more healthy and more nutrient rich for children. In Bari children eat lots and lots of pasta, often with only the basic tomato sauce. They add some parmesan cheese which is very rich in calcium and some vitamins but that's about it. My pasta for my kid includes whole wheat pasta ( which causes shivering for the majority of South Italians) instead of the white one.
For the sauce I've used fresh tomatoes, zucchini and garlic. After cooking I add the best quality olive oil (produced in Bitonto 15 km from our home), chia and sesame seeds and some fresh basilica.
Chia seeds contain calcium, iron, magnesium, omega 3 fatty acids,
phosphorus and manganese.
They're also good sources of protein and dietary fiber.
Sesame seeds instead are an excellent source of copper and a very good source of manganese, calcium, magnesium, iron, phosphorus, vitamin B1, zinc, molybdenum, selenium and dietary fiber.
I've taken some time to study a bit about good sources of calcium because my daughter won't drink a drop of cow's milk. She never did after breast feeding.
She just doesn't like the taste. This is interesting because my stomach doesn't tolerate cow's milk and so I haven't used it for years. Could it be that my eating habits are transferred to my kid ?
She gets her calcium from natural yoghurt that she often eats with a drop of honey in the morning. Other calcium sources are various cheeses, tofu and seeds.
So far these "extra ingredients" go only to my daughter's plate (and my own of course),
I still need to convince my stubborn M.