Moms, meet your new best friend. I was lucky enough to meet Katie Workman last week at a charity event. Who is Katie Workman, you ask? She’s the author of the new Mom 100 Cookbook which offers 100 recipes every Mom needs in her back pocket. If you struggle like I do to get a healthy family dinner on the table every night, this cookbook will become your “go-to” source for inspiration. In the book, she provides not only simple recipes but also solutions for those dilemmas Moms face when cooking for picky eaters (big and little).
I got to help Katie with her cooking demonstration while she shared helpful cooking tips. She made two of the recipes from the book which we got to sample and they were fantastic – the Broiled Miso Cod Fingers and the Sauteed Spring Vegetables. I’ve already made both recipes for my kids and they not only ate them, but LIKED them.
I love to cook, especially on the weekends where I have time to enjoy it. But being forced to get good meals on the table on nights when I’m dogged tired just causes me angst. (I love that word.) So, I purchased two copies of The Mom 100 Cookbook, one for me and one for you, to see how it could help.
Here were the highlights for me:
1. Variety. Do you ever find that you get in a rut when cooking dinner? Do the kids say “Aw, spaghetti AGAIN?” I definitely go through periods where I don’t want to think about dinner and I just fall back on 2 or 3 easy dishes. This gets boring! It does not make family dinner time fun. The book provides a variety of dishes with different flavors so I can easily expand my repertoire. From Cheddar and Cauliflower Soup to Cheesy Chicken Enchiladas to Soy-Ginger Flank Steak to Parmesan Turkey Meat Loaf, the recipes will make you look like Super Mom.
2. Little Helpers. Katie provides a little sidebar note on every recipe that says how the kids can help out with the recipe. Perfect! As you know, I’m a huge component of cooking with the kids. It not only teaches them a life skill (so my son doesn’t eat microwave burritos over the sink when he grows up), but it gives us a chance to talk in the kitchen. I have found that if I get the kids involved in planning the menu and cooking the recipe, they are more likely to eat it. The book also hassome good tips on how to get your kids to eat more things.
3. Fork in the Road. For most recipes, Katie calls out a “fork in the road” where you put aside some of the dish to appease those picky eaters. (Not where you say, “Forget this!” and order in pizza.) Then, you can continue on with the recipe adding more exotic or flavorful ingredients. I have doing this for awhile for my kids and wish I had come up with a cool name for it. For example, my daughter doesn’t like Mexican food and my son doesn’t like cheese. But I love i! So, when I make enchiladas I leave the enchilada sauce off a few for my daughter and I leave the cheese off a few for my son. That way we all get what we want but I didn’t have to make a whole new dish for the picky eaters.
4. Make Aheads. You are a Mom. You’re busy. Need I say more? So, the cookbook does us a favor and indicates where some parts of the recipe can be made ahead of time. Prep some of the food on Sunday and use it through the week when you are tired and don’t have a lot of time to get dinner on the table.
5. Mixed Company Recipes. I love to entertain. We try to have friends and family over for dinner at least once a month and kids are usually invited. So, when I cook, I need to impress the adults with my cooking skills yet still have the kids eat it and not feed it to the dog. The Mom 100 Cookbook features a whole section on Mixed Company Recipes that should appeal to both adults and kids. So, the party is on!
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