Why write a cookbook about Additive Avoidance Cooking? I have 3 reasons. The first reason is because raising a family while avoiding food additives is a difficult task, a tremendous undertaking. Although my Mom was determined in her efforts to improve our eating habits, my youngest brother was the only one left at home when we began. I was married 3 years, with a 2 year old and a baby on the way. We have 4 children now, ages 5-15, and through the years I have found ways to adapt our way of eating to our busy lives of school, work, sports, music lessons, dance lessons, church meetings and activities, school lunches, after-school snacks, breakfast before the bus, sleepovers, birthday parties, road-trips, and any other kind of busy that comes with raising a family. With this perspective, I hope to bring ideas specifically for those of us who may be a bit overwhelmed at the notion of making everything “from scratch”, but want to improve our quality of diet while leading busy lives.
The second reason is my friends and family have asked for my own recipes again and again. Some have shared wonderful recipes with me. Why not put them all in one spot? I use every single recipe in this book. I did not include anything that I do not love to make or eat! Some of my friends did not have the opportunity to learn basic cooking skills, so I am making the directions clear and easy to follow, as well as including a pantry list. Learning to cook is like anything else. It takes practice, the right tools, a few vocabulary terms, and determination.
The third reason for compiling this book, is that 3 or 4 years ago, my oldest child, Chelsea, “the Planner”, dramatically exclaimed, “If you don’t teach me how to make all these yummy things, I will not be able to eat anything when I go to college!” Mind you, she was 11 or 12 years old then, but I promised her I would write my recipes down for her before she left for college. I remember college and not eating well, and certainly not having very much direction in what was simple, quick, and could provide my body with the nutrition it was in such great need of. Since that promise, Chelsea has reminded me every so often, and with only 3 more years hanging delicately between now and college, I thought I better get going on making my promise good. Most of the recipes in here are for a family of 6-ish, but can be cut in half for 1-4 people, and there is nothing bad about delicious leftovers! 90% of my (and my husband’s) lunches are, happily, leftovers.