Kate Garraway: I wooed my husband with fancy meals but now it's all fish fingers and beans!

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After a few years of marriage and a couple of kids, it’s not easy keeping the spark alive – just ask Daybreak presenter Kate Garraway.

Even for the most romantic of couples, once the kids come along it’s goodbye candlelit champagne dinners and hello sausage, beans and chips.

“My husband always jokes that I wooed him with fancy meals and they went out the window as soon as we got married!” laughs the showbiz reporter.

The busy mother of two tells us: “I used to really enjoy cooking and do fancy dinner parties and things.

“But then you have children and that dries up very quickly.”

For many parents out there, Kate’s experience is a familiar one.

“You start making pasta, fish fingers and beans everyday,” laments the 46-year-old, who is determined to put the fun back into family cooking.

“Generally everything gets a bit practical when kids arrive but there’s something nice about cooking for your family rather than doing it to impress people.”

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As one of the nation’s most loved TV hosts, Kate understands all too well about the stress of juggling a hectic work life with a happy home life.

But rather than seeing cooking for her little ones as a chore, Kate has turned cooking (and baking) into a fun, messy activity.

And with son Billy and daughter Darcy helping out, Kate knows a little bit about accidents in the kitchen.

“I’ve had absolute disasters in the kitchen,” she says. “One Christmas I melted the plastic bowls around my Christmas puddings – four of them!”

To help inspire us all back into the kitchen, Kate has joined forces with Flora to create some tasty yet simple recipes for parents to have a go at with their little ones.

“As an adult, you forget how magical cooking can be to a children. You take five ingredients, mix them up, put it in the oven and in 15 minutes out pops a cake!

“Baking’s a really great place to start because most of the activity and the fun takes place away from the oven. You can chuck everything in and have fun getting messy and decorating but without the worry of open flames and sharp knives,” she explains.

Kate reckons the huge success of shows like The Great British Bake Off have inspired more and more of us to pick up the recipe books but there is a downside too.
“Thanks to these baking shows we all feel like we have to produce these beautiful, show-stopping cakes, which I think puts people off.”

Kate knows the most important part of baking with Darcy and Billy is the fun they get to have – not to mention licking the spoon!

As for the cakes they produce?

“I’ve had loads of cakes and cupcakes that have gone wrong. Just cut the burnt bits off and cover it in icing!”

“Family baking is about having fun in the kitchen, it doesn’t matter how wonky the cakes look at the end.”

Kate Garraway and Flora Buttery are campaigning for mums to reclaim the mixing bowl and put the fun back into family baking. Everyday baking is not about perfect cakes, it’s about celebrating the small disasters along the way, licking the bowl and having fun, and if you make a mess - it’s worth it! To see Kate’s simple 5 in 15 cupcake recipe, or to upload your own wonky creations visit www.funfamilybaking.com

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