On many nights, I stay up way too late trawling through cooking websites. I’m always on the hunt for easy and delicious recipes for my family. With a toddler and baby in the house, I have had to change my cooking style. Before having kids kids, eating dinner at 9pm was not uncommon, and I relished spending 1-2 hours in the kitchen creating something. Now? Dinner needs to be ready at 6:30pm to feed my hungry toddler and I need simpler, fast recipes to satisfy the entire family.
One night, I happened upon the Yummy Mummy Kitchen blog and it was love at first recipe! Author Marina Delio shares delicious, healthy, and easy recipes on her blog and I was excited to get her cookbook for more of the same.
To be clear, this is not a cookbook on how to look like a “Yummy Mummy.” Rather, Marina describes a Yummy Mummy as: “a loving and dedicated mother who embodies a healthy lifestyle, while not losing a sense of the person she was before having kids.”
The cookbook is divided into several chapters, including appetizers & snacks, soups, salads and vegetables, meatless mains, seafood mains, dessert, breakfast, and a few meat-based dishes. All recipes are designed to be healthy and kid-friendly, but still delicious and worthy for entertaining adults.
Recipes I’ve tried so far:
– Cheesy Broccoli Brown Rice Poppers – a great toddler snack that pops a whole grain, protein, and vegetable in one bite. Mine did not come out as pretty as Marina’s, but they sure were tasty!
– Baked Spinach and Artichoke Dip – delicious! It was devoured for lunch with crackers and veggies
– Broccoli Antioxidant Salad – a sweet, creamy, and healthy salad. I enjoyed it but my toddler, who usually loves broccoli, picked out the grapes and avocado to munch on. I will definitely try again with this one, though!
– Roasted green beans and cherry tomatoes – so simple, but roasting these veggies takes them to a new level. My husband really loved this one.
– Cheesy stuffed zucchini – another lunch dish – creamy and yummy
– Peanut butter and jelly granola bars – So decadent tasting, but also made with oats and flaxseeds
– Chocolate almond smoothie – my son goes crazy for this. It tastes like a milkshake but uses milk and almond butter.
– California egg sandwiches – egg, avocado, cheese on a toasted English muffin – a lovely breakfast bite.
And there are many more delicious recipes to try, like: Grilled shrimp in avocado boats, balsamic strawberry bruschetta, easy peasy fresh pea soup, and 15-minute mascarpone fettucine with salmon, just to name a few.
However, my absolute favourite idea from this book is the “Refrigerator Salad Bar for Toddlers.” Prepare a bunch of great “salad bar” ingredients in advance in a container and pull it out for an easy on the fly lunch or snack. It’s a great way to introduce some new foods amongst favourites, and it gives toddlers a sense of independence since they can choose what to eat from the selections. Salad bar ingredients could include a chopped hardboiled egg, steamed lentils, steamed peas, grape tomatoes, cheese cubes, and blueberries. The options are endless.
Throughout the book, Marina shares her own “Life Tips” on ideas to introduce new foods or ways to maintain that Yummy Mummy lifestyle between being a mom yet still maintaining some self-care. There’s also a section on easy party menus and tips on getting your kids to enjoy vegetables.
At the heart of this book is a tribute to the original Yummy Mummy in Marina’s life, her grandmother. There are some great personal stories, in the book, as well as beautiful pictures of the food plus Marina and her two beautiful daughters.
The Yummy Mummy Kitchen is a cookbook full of ideas and recipes for healthy and balanced food for the entire family. It’s in regular rotation in my house and a great resource. You can purchase the book, or the Vancouver Public Library has a few copies for you to check out too.
Disclosure: I requested and received a complimentary review copy of this book. All opinions are my own.