Hungry Monkey: A Food-Loving Father’s Quest to Raise an Adventurous Eater by Matthew Amster-Burton {book review}

I long for the days when I only had to think of myself at meal times. I know what I like and therefore I find it easy to feed myself.

Now I have a husband and two little people have likes and dislikes of their own. Which means dinnertime especially can be nothing short of my worst nightmare.

To be fair to my husband it’s not his fault he’s allergic to all citrus, but it is something I have to accommodate for.

My Mini-Baker loves all veggies and will try anything and everything at least once. My Baby-Baker loves meat and point blank refuses to try anything.

When I first became a mom I did stress about food. My Mini-Baker didn't like jarred baby food nor did she like homemade food, whole or pureed. She was only happy with toast and some fruits.

I felt like I was failing at one of the 3 fundamental things that all children (and adults) need: food, clothes, shelter.

I wish I had this book then, I would have saved me a lot of stress and allowed me to relax and know that it would be okay. It wasn't until she was 8 or 9 months old that I realized there was no need to stress. I caught her watching my fork go to the plate to my mouth. From then on she ate what we ate and did so just fine. 

According to Amazon I bought this book in 2011 well after both my little ones were weaned, so there were parts that I really related too.

He tells us how at first he was very smug at his 2 year old ate pretty much everything, but little did he know that by the time she was 3 she would start to get picky.

When Mini-Baker was about 2 ½ years old she loved Chilli Beef, our local Chinese does the best, so I didn't blame her. We were so tired of her stealing ours we ordered her her own portion and she ate all of it. I was so smug about it I told everyone!

We took her again for a treat around 6 months later and again ordered her her own portion expecting her to demolish it. No, such luck she decided that it wasn't that good and much preferred to just eat the rice. I wasn't so smug after that and was prepared when her sister came along.

Baby-Baker currently loves olives and hot sauce, sometimes together. But I know one day that might not be the case. For know though we have lots of olives because I love them too.

This is the reason that children are so hard to feed. One day they love something the next day they don’t.

Now that they are both older and discovering their own tastes when I meal plan they get to suggest something they would like for dinner. I always listen because it saves me the hassle of figuring out what to make!

If you are a foodie, parent, or both this book is for you. It’s full of parenting truths only learned by experience, but it’s also full of recipes!

In chapter 18 he states that his food fantasy is to take his daughter to Toyko for the ultimate culinary vacation. Well his fantasy came true as he writes about it in his second book Pretty Good Number One: An American Family Eats Tokyo which I have downloaded on my kindle app and will be reading while I am visiting in the USA!

If you are a parent I would love to hear what your kids favorite foods and dishes are! Please leave a comment below! 

notes: I bought this book as stated above years ago, I have just re-read it and felt like writing down my thoughts on it. I will be posting a post on my summer reading soon! Matthew Amster-Burton also writes a blog called Roots and Grubs.

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