On the eve of the official publication of the new edition of The Tickle Fingers Toddler Cookbook, I am in a reflective mood. When I first started writing recipes to cook with my two, I could never have imagined I would be sitting four years later looking at a professionally published cookbook about to hit the shelves.
My eldest's first time cooking aged 13 months. This chocolate fork biscuit recipe remains my go-to recipe for a quick, sweet treat to cook with toddlers. In fact, here is my youngest making them in 2012:
A few months later, here is my eldest aged 15 months making an easy chocolate cake. Note the precarious balancing at the worktop and glass cookware. I quickly realised I was adding unnecessary stress to the whole thing and set her up at a little child-height table instead.
My youngest aged 15 months being allowed to lick the spoon after making Chocolate Biscuit Cake. It was around now that I started looking for savoury or fruit-based things they could make. I wanted to get them involved in everyday cooking, not just making the odd cake or biscuit. What I found was either not suitable as food for the family or too difficult so they couldn't be hands-on. This was when the recipe development and writing began in earnest.
Over the years,
I've had so much fun seeing my two develop an interest and love for food, become more confident and able, and despite it now being 'Mummy's job,' continue to love cooking together. Their enthusiasm and support has been incredible. Thank you girls.
Before I sign off, I just want to say a big thank you to everyone whose supported me and got me to this point: friends and family who've championed me; members of the Tickle Fingers online community who've liked, shared and posted; the families who've come to workshops and events; the playgroups; nurseries and schools I've worked with; Ebury Publishing and HHB Agency; and most importantly, all the wonderful children I've cooked with or who've shared pictures cooking my recipes at home. It's those proud faces, tales of trying a new food for the first time, and the smiles that make it all absolutely worth it!