I have an incredibly fussy eater in my house. Regardless of what I cook, as I carefully place my creation in front of her at the dinner table with a mixture of anticipation, dread and a rather optimistic sliver of hope, she will take one look, turn up her nose and say “I don’t like it.” I’ve heard all the advice from parents of great eaters, but the truth is my daughter just isn’t into trying new foods no matter what I do. There are very few staples I have to rely on for weeknight meals and to date I have been sorely lacking in the inspiration, skills and recipes to juggle the task of cooking for a fussy eater, a ravenous six year old and two tired parents who are constantly on a mission to improve our diet.
Enter Tiny Bites Cooking School.
With classes in the city and Brookvale, Tiny Bites courses are aimed at Mums and Dads with small children, with a focus on promoting home cooking within the context of a whole week’s dietary needs. The menus are designed by the Founder of Tiny Bites Cooking School, Allison Murray, accredited paediatric dietician Kristine Lobley and chef Vicky Harris. While the course is hands on, there was plenty of time for discussion and questions, and a good portion of the three hours was devoted to imparting general wisdom about childhood eating habits and nutritional guidelines. The unique combination of no fuss family recipes and kid friendly tips has already paid off in our household, with the ‘Cheat’s Chicken and Vegetable Pie’ being a particular hit and eliciting licked clean plates from the whole family – even Little Miss Fussy.
The week following has brought with it a new confidence, new ideas and a deeper commitment to healthy meals over pre packaged snacks. As with so many of the best things in life, the menus are full of healthier takes on simple traditional classics which are guaranteed to please fussy eaters and are appropriate for all members of the household to enjoy. Seven different dishes were created in the kitchen, with complementary instruction in how to vary each one for personal tastes and preferences, including how to account for vegetarian family members. And each meal was surprisingly simple to prepare.
For parents lacking in ideas, confidence in the kitchen or culinary skills, Tiny Bites is a life saver and comes with the added bonus of a fridge full of meals for the week to come and a solid base of family friendly recipes. Best of all, each class comes with 6 months membership to the Tiny Bites Cooking online community, so parents will continue to be supported after the class.
The downside? No leftovers.
For more information, visit the Tiny Bites Facebook site at www.facebook.com/tinybitescooking or find Tiny Bites on Instagram @tinybitescooking.