"My mother puts a little salt in the rice."
Translation:Minha mãe coloca pouco sal no arroz.
Hmm, I think that the English sentence is wrong. It should be "My mother puts little salt in the rice". The "A" should not be there. If the "A" were to be there then I think that there should be something like "BIT OF" right next to it instead, for example: My mother puts a little BIT OF salt in the rice. But in that case the Portuguese phrase would have to be "Minha mãe coloca UM pouco DE sal no arroz." instead.
Anyway, I just thought that I should share my insight. I have already reported the English sentence as unnatural by the way.
I hope I have helped!
I disagree. Putting little salt in something sounds more general and could be understood more with context, however when someone says they put a little salt in something, it sounds more direct and referring more to an action that is presently taking place, or took place recently