Author: Carrie S. Forbes
Publisher: Adams Media (2013)
Feeding your children is a full-time job – between picky eaters, constant media bombardment pushing bright, mascot-laden boxes, cans and bags of junk food and peer pressure from classmates to have “cool” lunches and snacks, figuring out the daily menu is tricky! When your child or another family member has dietary restrictions, though, that three-times-daily task becomes even harder. A lot of allergy-free (and especially gluten-free) ingredients, packaged foods and conventional recipes are not overly tasty, well textured or nutritious – and since children in particular thrive on texture (followed closely by sugar, salt and fat), the days of spoon-feeding baby food may seem like a long distant dream. Today, advances in gluten-free and vegan cooking have made allergy-free living not only bearable but enjoyable. Kid- (and parent-) friendly, safe food was clearly the goal of Carrie S. Forbes when she wrote 201 Gluten-Free Recipes for Kids.
GFK is definitely not just a “kid food” book, packed with junk food made of sugar and refined starches. Yes, there are “treat” foods and desserts – including chicken nuggets and brownies – but good, wholesome meals are the main focus. Recipes like Broccoli Quinoa Casserole (p. 123) and Fish Baked in Papillote (p. 118) are definitely more on par with the book’s aims, and their simple but elegant flavours will entice adults and children alike. Both meat and vegetarian entrees are featured in GFK, along with baked goods, salads, soups, sandwiches and sides. Of course, no meal is complete without dessert, and GFK is rife with those too. Holiday favourites like Sweet Potato Pie (p. 185) and weeknight treats like Chocolate Pudding (p. 206) get equal billing here, and everything sounds good enough to devour right off the page.
|Modified Split Pea Soup (p. 91)|
|Best Chocolate Chip Cookies (p. 191)|
One of the things I found disappointing was this book’s lack of photos. There is an insert of selected pictures, but as with the cover photos they are not necessarily of the actual recipe. The cover photos are stock images, and the inner shots were done by Jennifer L. Yandle, who also photographed for Forbes’ other books. Being one who loves to gawk at food photos while cooking, I would have liked to see more “real” ones, but I understand the necessity of using professional photographers for a published book. Forbes’ blog, Ginger Lemon Girl, is a prime example of her stunning photographs and is a website I frequent for the recipes as well.
While figuring out meals for the whole family to share can be a cause of frustration, Carrie S. Forbes is on a mission to make the task a little easier. With a bit of cooking know-how, anyone can cook, bake and enjoy recipes from 201 Gluten-Free Recipe for Kids, even if those kids are grown!
Available on Amazon