May 6, 2010

Organically Raised


We recently sat down with Anni Daulter — nutrition extraordinaire, mindful mama of three (plus one on the way) and author — for an inspirational chat about nourishing our children, creating mindful family dynamics, and the much anticipated debut of her book, “Organically Raised: Conscious Cooking for Babies and Toddlers,” available May 25.

Tell us about “Organically Raised: Conscious Cooking for Babies and Toddlers.”

I really want moms to feel like the book is a good resource — not only for recipes, but also for nourishing babies (and families) from day one forward. It begins with information on breastfeeding, moves to tips and tricks for those picky toddler eaters in your house, and naturally progresses to promote bringing family community back to our consciousness. Parenting (which includes cooking) through daily routines creates a family community based on mindfulness. I didn’t grow up in a family where cooking, eating well, and eating together was a routine. I wish I would’ve, and I hope this book gives moms the inspiration to create such an environment for their children.

What inspired “Organically Raised?”

It all started when my oldest, who’s now 13, was a baby and I started making all of his baby food at home. There weren’t any alternatives to store-bought, shelf-stable food. I didn’t want him eating processed food, so I became inspired to create his meals from scratch. At the time, I kept thinking that this would be a great business for somebody to begin — making fresh baby food for busy moms. My husband and I ended up starting Bohemian Baby, a business that let us deliver fresh organic baby food all over LA. Our experience feeding hundreds of babies — developing recipes and relationships with parents who wanted to feed their babies the best food possible — truly inspired my book. It’s a collection of our favorite recipes that are loved by the babies who inspired them. I believe that putting love into food makes a big difference in the quality and taste.

With the crazy lives we lead, it’s sometimes a challenge to be mindful – for our babies and for ourselves. Your book gives moms recipes that are easy to create, making it completely feasible to properly nourish their babies and children. Can you speak to the importance of keeping mindfulness at the forefront of our lives?

Our lives get very, very busy, which is why it’s so important to be mindful. Coming together for a (healthy) meal as family is an old tradition that has gotten lost in our fast-paced culture. It’s an investment to create a family environment, to slow down for a few minutes, involve children, and have a meal together. Ultimately, mindfulness — having a level of awareness — is really what sets our families up to be what we want them to be. Mindfulness creates a family who sits, communicates, and enjoys each other (and the amazing, nutritious food we serve) during mealtime.

The recipes in “Organically Raised” are absolutely amazing. Who or what was your muse?

The recipes are all named after babies I’ve fed (and my children, of course!). Over the years, I’ve tested many things out. Some things work, some things don’t. It’s been exciting to play with and combine very healthy foods to make yummy meals, and see babies love and come to appreciate good, nutritious meals.


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