With a spoon in one hand, a camera at the ready in the other, and a tiny person sitting slightly skew-whiff in a highchair looking back at you with intrigue: the moment when your little one gets her first taste of real, albeit rather mushy and not particularly appealing-looking, food is an exciting (and slightly daunting) part of parenthood. Whatever your pre-child relationship with food may have been, the arrival of these tiny little bundles of joy sets many parents on a new journey that continues well beyond the highchair stage.


We all want thriving, happy and healthy children and food plays a huge part in that. Nothing makes us happier than seeing little hands tucking in eagerly, smiling faces around the dinner table and, of course, empty plates. The little people that join us on our journey, however, are born with minds of their own, tastebuds that take time to evolve, and personalities to boot – one of the reasons why we love them so dearly! So occasionally (well, actually, quite regularly), we have to think a bit more creatively about how and what we will be serving in order to achieve ‘empty plate’ status at the same time as providing the nutrition their growing bodies need.


A little bit about Jen


How many identities do you have?

I’m a very lucky mummy to my two daughters and baby boy, and wife to my lovely hubby of eight years, together for 15. I’m also a languages teacher and author.


What’s your favourite food?

I love spicy creations. I could eat curry at any time of day! And to satisfy those sweet cravings? Chocolate brownie wins hands down.


What's your nutritional background?

I've always enjoyed cooking and have always eaten well but a real turning point was after my mum was diagnosed with Stage 4 breast cancer. She chose not to have conventional treatment and instead began to explore the true superpowers of food, cutting out everything refined and eating clean. Mum came from Scotland to stay with us in Perth for three months shortly after her diagnosis so we all got on board. That was the real start of my nutrition journey. I am now in the course of studying Child Nutrition.


Outside the kitchen what do you love doing?

Spending time with my family is my favourite thing to do, particularly if we get to be together in the sunshine at the beach, at the park, at one of the many incredibly beautiful places we are lucky enough to live near to.


I heard you are a globetrotter?

We moved to Perth from the UK at the beginning of 2013 and this has been home ever since. I am very lucky to have two of my three little brothers also living in Perth and we are hoping to get my Dad over here
soon too.

A little bit about Judy


How many identities do you have?

Oh, there are quite a few. Being a mummy is my favourite. I'm also a designer, photographer, author, food stylist, nutritionist and I like to grow things in the garden.


What’s your favourite food?

Veggies are my greatest food-love and anything with rice. I like to eat lots of plants and then there is chocolate. There is no life without chocolate.


What's your nutritional background.

The ladies in my family taught me how to cook and preserve. I grew up with a huge veggie patch and a fruit orchard in Bavaria/Germany. It was so good.

I studied Human Nutrition and I'm working my way through the ancient nutrition pathways in Chinese Medicine and Ayurveda. Combining Eastern and Western Medicine and Nutrition feels like the right thing for me. There's so much to learn!


Outside the kitchen what do you
love doing?

I'm so lucky because all things I do to earn a living are my hobbies. When I have nothing to do I like to sit still and watch the world in wonder.


I heard you are a globetrotter?

Yes, I'm a Bavarian Texan who fell in love with the Indian Ocean and now call Australia home. Perth is a beautiful place but I miss my family in Germany a lot.

Hi, we are Jen and Judy, two mothers who love to cook for our families and everyone that surrounds us. Away from the kitchen, Jen is a teacher and Judy a designer. We have a passion for everything that grows from the ground: fresh fruit and vegetables, and colourful, locally grown foods. Our main aim is to simplify -  it's all about everyday dishes that are stripped back, free from artificial ingredients, and turned into delicious healthy alternatives. Family favourites with a twist.


We believe food magically connects people and we created this book to share our passion with anyone who loves to cook and eat simple, healthy whole foods that nourish body and spirit. Take these recipes as a foundation to create your own. Have fun, make a mess, experiment with different ingredients and let the kids give you a hand.


Making this book has been heaps of fun and our little folk have been by our sides the whole time as our most enthusiastic and most valued recipe testers. No matter what stage of the food journey you find yourself on (be it starting the weaning adventures with a small baby or trying to encourage healthier eating habits in an older, more stubborn eater), we hope you will find a few dishes here that you will eat together with delight.


Jen & Judy





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