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The Toddler Cafe by Jennifer Carden is my favorite children’s cookbook. I read several baby / toddler cookbooks when my daughter started eating solid foods last year. I never used any of the recipes because they were mostly combinations of foods – pears and cottage cheese, and the books were boring.

This book is different. It is filled with unique and interesting recipes, and good advice on feeding children. 

Now, I haven’t had the opportunity to make any of the recipes yet. Life has been completely too crazy for me to make a list, go to the grocery store, buy ingredients, and follow a recipe. After the munchkin and I finish moving and are settled in our new home, I plan on trying lots of these recipes.

So what can I tell you then? The recipes in this book look yummy and interesting. The recipes are simple and healthy. I have read the book’s introduction, and I like the author’s attitude towards eating and cooking with kids. She believes that parents need to foster a positive attitude between children and food, and that mealtime should be “fun and interactive.”

The introduction also has great ideas about how to make mealtime more creative and fun, such as telling your child that the food they are eating is their favorite character’s favorite food. 

Some recipes that I can’t wait to make are:
Lily Pad Pancakes – pancakes made with frozen peas,
Starry Night Stew – black bean and pasta stew,
Toddler Truffles – black beans truffles,
Treasure Triangles – puff pastry with black beans and bananas,
PB&J French Toast – a peanut butter and jelly sandwich dipped in egg and milk and cooked until golden brown, 
Peanut Butter Globe Globs – globs of peanut butter mixed with honey, oats, and cereal.

(Yes, we love black beans in this family. And yes, it makes for fun diapers!)

Check out this book. It has great ideas and fun recipes. It is available from the Columbus Metropolitan Library. You can also visit The Toddler Cafe blog.  I will keep you posted as to when we finally get to cook up some of these fantastic looking recipes.

[Photo Credit: Book Cover]

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