ABC's Lama Hasan reports:
For Britain’s celebrity Chef Jamie Oliver taking on the schools in this country with his Feed Me Better campaign three years ago was no easy task. Not only was he trying to convince schools to ban the junk and cook healthier food using fresh ingredients, Oliver was also attempting what some thought was the impossible, getting school kids to change their eating habits. But some did take a bite and so did the British government which allocated a whopping four hundred and sixty six dollars to tackle what Oliver called the school cafeteria food crisis.
But if you thought school kids were a tough crowd then spare a thought for two chefs with an even tougher audience to please. Stepping up to the plate are Luke Tipping, a Michelin-starred executive chef and award winning Aktar Islam. They’ve come up with a menu of delectable dishes including warm vermicelli pudding, scented with cinnamon and green cardamom, sprinkled with crush pistachio and Rusk croutons; and dill-seasoned cheddar cheese fish pie accompanied with fresh broccoli and sweet corn. All served in dinky jars.
How does that sound to you? Appetizing? Probably not, but you’re not who they’re targeting. Their food critics this time are babies or munchkins as I like to call them. The idea is that these recipes produce healthier and tastier food than their processed counterparts. One of their aims is to get babies to eat meals using quality ingredients that are more fresh than the prepared mush available in stores. The chefs claim that they’re even cheaper to create. Tipping said a portion of the baby food, his fish pie, would only cost around $1.60 to make. They also want to encourage children into restaurants as much as possible so by appealing to their taste buds at an early age, they hope they’ll develop a taste for the fine foods.
But how do you get these food critics to well, criticise your food? I think the answer is with difficulty but their meals will go before a panel of babies, toddlers, children and parents this Wednesday as part of the Taste of Birmingham festival. The proof, as they say, will be in the pudding or in this case jars of Michelin starred baby food.