I received an email a week or so ago from Penguin Publishing, offering F&B and I an advance copy of "Cute Yummy Time" by La Carmina, in case we would like to take a look at it and perhaps review if for our blog.
One little peek at the cover was enough to let me know the answer was definitely yes! It looked entirely too cute to pass up the chance to read it. :o) It arrived in our mailbox mid last week.
For those who saw our not-so bento lunch, rather cute & on the plate lunch, you'll recognize the animal cheese, ham and toast critters from the cover! Hers are actually a yummy looking rye cracker, but F&B don't really care for rye and I didn't quite have crackers, so we substituted toast in a pinch.
The shaped quesadillas in Ben's Wednesday snack were also inspired from this book, although hers is a beautifully & artistically arranged caterpillar and ours were mini turtle shapes so I could fit them in Ben's bento. The thought was still there, and she did convince me to make them much cuter than triangles.
The book is subtitled "70 recipes for the cutest food you'll ever eat" and the food is absolutely darling. Called "kawaii" and pronounced like Hawaii, the food is all presented as adorable animals. Even better, none of the animal shapings call for anything extremely complicated, seasonings and bits of vegetables help make the faces, no food markers or dyes needed. All of the recipes seem to be reasonable in terms of time & ingredients and many of them appear to be rather kid friendly but still healthy (lots of homemade breads & pastas, wheats instead of whites and plenty of veggies). Personally, I love how easy her tips are for making the food cuter. There were so many hints we're going to try and add into our bentos since they aren't time consuming.
F&B absconded with the book, right after I finished paging through it. They took it upstairs to their playroom (which, for those who don't know us, is outfitted with a majorly well-stocked play kitchen). When I finally went to check on them, they were plotting what recipes they were going to pretend to make upstairs and what ones they were going to convince Mommy to make for real. Faith also loved the little story that runs through each page of the author and Basil the cat's adventures in Kawaii-land.
This week, I think we're going to be trying the piggie bread, chick shaped boiled eggs & the mouse shaped mac & cheese, unless F&B pick something else that just has to be made!
Cute Yummy Time is available for preorder right now and is officially released on October 6th. My copy is in the play kitchen, which means I'll need to steal it back to make the piggie bread dough. ;o)
Disclosure: I was provided with a complimentary copy of Cute Yummy Time for the purposes of this review. The opinions expressed in this review are completely my own. No additional compensation was received.