Be glad in the Lord and rejoice! Psalm 32:11

Saturday, August 27, 2011

Weekend Cooking - Top 100 Pasta Dishes: Easy Everyday Recipes That Children Will Love by Annabel Karmel

As the mom of four boys, I had to come up with some pretty creative dishes in my time, but I was lucky that they all love to eat, and would eat just about anything thing that didn't eat them first!

They are all grown now, and I'm looking foward to, in the future, having grandkids to cook for and spoil!  So I was interested in Annabel Karmel's new book, "Top 100 Pasta Dishes: Easy Everyday Recipes That Children Will Love," a new cookbook directed at pasta dishes that kids would enjoy.

About The Book:

 Who doesn’t love pasta? For most kids—and their parents—pasta is the best food in the world. It’s tasty and nutritious, it’s easy, quick, and economical to cook—and, even better, it comes in lots of fun shapes! Here is Annabel’s ultimate collection of one hundred pasta dishes, with a section for babies (it’s a good way to introduce texture) and toddlers (it’s great for fussy eaters), plus a huge variety of quick and easy recipes that older children will enjoy and that will become family favorites!

Filled with color photos, simple instructions, and clear notes on cooking and preparation times, plus symbols throughout to show which recipes are suitable for babies and younger children, and which recipes are suitable for freezing, this is the ultimate pasta cookbook for families everywhere. With Annabel’s help, dinnertime can finally be fuss free!

Well, hmmm...ok.  First of all, this is a gorgeous little book - filled with beautiful photographs, easy-to-follow recipes, and great sounding food.  That being said, I didn't see but a handful of recipes that I would logically make for my children when they were little.  Curry chicken?  Gently fileted salmon?  Veal?  Nope.

Now I have to qualify Ms. Karmel as being what seems to be a gourmet cook, and based in England, where I guess if you were making fancy meals for you and your husband, and happen to have a few ingredients left over to fix for the kids, I can see the inclusion of the exotic ingredients.

There were several delicious sounding dishes that I'd actually like to try for my grown kids sometime, including this simple but yummy Mushroom and Spinach Pasta. (I'd just use grownup pasta instead of alphabets!)


1/3 cup mini pasta shells
1 tbsp butter
1/4 cup onion, finely diced
1/2 cup mushrooms, finely diced
1 clove garlic, crushed
1 tbsp. plain flour
1 cup milk
¼ teaspoon chopped fresh thyme
1/3 cup parmesan, grated
1/2 cup baby spinach, finely chopped


1. Cook the pasta according to the packet instructions and drain.

2. Melt the butter in a saucepan. Add the onion, cover and sauté for 8 minutes or until softened. Add mushrooms and fry for 3 minutes. Add the garlic and fry for 2 minutes. Add the flour, then milk, stirring until thickened. Add the thyme, parmesan and spinach, and stir until wilted.
3. Stir in the drained pasta.

Makes four portions. Suitable for children 8 months and up. Suitable for freezing.

About The Author:

Annabel Karmel is the UKs best-selling author on feeding babies & children. She is an expert in devising tasty & nutritious meals for children without the need for parents to spend hours in the kitchen.
A mother of three, Annabel has written 24 books on feeding babies, children and families.  Her books have sold over 4 million copies worldwide.  Check out her website at http://www.annabelkarmel.com/ for more info on her books and products.

My thanks to the publisher for supplying the review copy of this book. I was not compensated for my opinion.

Enjoy the weekend, my friends, and as always ...Happy Reading!!!

Weekend Cooking is a weekly meme sponsored by Beth Fish Reads http://www.bethfishreads.com/.   Check out the other yummy recipes that fellow bloggers have posted!


TheBookGirl said...

Your review made me smile. My daughter lived on pasta (it was one of the five or six foods she would eat for years), but there is no way she would have eaten it with curry, veal, or salmon, lol.

Beth F said...

Bummer. I know what you mean about kids not necessarily going for curry or salmon. And almost all my nieces and nephews refused to eat mushrooms until they were in their teens.

On the other hand, Sounds like there might be some good recipes for adults. Salmon, veal, and curried chicken all sound wonderful!

Rikki said...

I wouldn't even make mushroom and spinach, to be honest, seeing what fussy eaters my boys are. Sound good for adults, though....

Margot said...

I'm always looking for a new pasta dish but I probably wouldn't buy the book. I'll check to see if my library has it.

Nan said...

We nicknamed our daughter 'the pasta queen' when she was little, and she still is as a grownup! I know what you mean about all those recipes. I'm all about the simpler the better. Pasta and cheese, and pasta with sauce, and pasta with whatever sautéed vegetables they will eat. :<)

Vicki said...

We all love pasta. Thanks for the recipe!
Here's My Recipe

Jessica said...

I think perhaps there is a cultural difference here because in our house curry and salmon are foods that we eat on a regular basis and are not at all considered 'exotic'(I also just asked my work collegues and they also agreed that curry is on a par with something like spagetti bolognase)

However after saying that pasta certainly goes down well everytime with my toddle so thankyou for posting the recipe.

Dreambox Remote said...

Cooking is my passion and i love to bake something new every day. I love spinach pasta. I have made spiced spinach pasta with sun rise tomatoes.