Meals & Cookbook
We operate a seasonally based four weekly rotating menu incorporating the freshest produce.
At Choklits Child Care, Kindergarten and Early Learning Centre, we offer an exciting and yummy children’s menu at every opportunity – breakfast for the early birds, morning tea, a hot cooked lunch and afternoon tea. All meals are prepared by our experienced chef and we cater for special dietary requirements and allergies.
The menu is displayed in our foyer, in the individual classrooms and right here on our blog as we encourage parents to become involved in menu planning and welcome suggestions. Water is served with all meals. Water is readily available to all children throughout the day and we encourage self-serve for our older children. For babies we provide pureed vegetables, vegetables with chicken, rice or pasta. Yoghurt and pureed fruits are also provided. Special dietary requirements can be catered for.
In the interests of health and well-being of our little learners, we recently introduced a new rule in our Choklits kitchen; we no longer buy sugar! That’s correct, we don’t allow additional sugar in anything. For great recipes including all our sugar-free alternatives click here.
Our kitchen operates a food safety program to comply with the highest of standards of food safety required by the Victorian Food Act. The Food Safety program is audited and monitored by the local council and independent Food Safety Auditor annually.
Cooking at Choklits
Is there an easy way to cook healthy meals that my family will love and my children will enjoy eating? How do I teach my children to love their vegetables? How do I ensure a meal is healthy? There’s a bit of a theme to the most asked questions here at Choklits and we’ve finally convinced our chef Helen to reveal her secrets in our very own cookbook.
A message from Helen
It’s a real privilege to share some of our most loved meals and dishes from the kitchen here at Choklits. I may cook the meals, but it’s the children whom I adore and love that give me feedback, tell me what they enjoy and how my food makes them feel that has helped me learn and grow as a chef, so this really is a team effort.These recipes may seem surprisingly simple to some and they are, but they are also very practical and easy to make, even at home.
Food is about feeling so when I’m cooking, I’m always thinking about that, I’m trying to help the children feel good and not to get caught up overcomplicating things. In my experience, young children aren’t too interested in those fancy dishes and cooking techniques you see on TV. They just want yummy food that provides plenty of energy to run, to learn, to play and to share with their friends. I take care of the nutrition so they can focus on their education.
We encourage all our parents to become involved in the meal and menu planning at Choklits. One of the questions I get asked most consistently is “How do I ensure a meal is healthy?”. Basically, if you avoid sugar and anything from a packet you can be pretty sure you’ve got a healthy meal, so that’s the way we think about it here.
As part of our commitment to healthy eating, we are currently working towards a no sugar, no packet policy at Choklits. It’s a lot of work to make these changes as we are just like many of our parents, super busy every single day.
We know sugar is used excessively because it is a cheap filler ingredient and packaged food is popular because it’s a convenient option and saves time, but we believe the health of our children is more than convenience and one of the most important investments we can make.
Plant to plate
In early 2017 we began upgrading our veggie patches as part of our sustainability program called “Plant to Plate”. We now have two huge veggie patches growing strawberries, passionfruit, garlic, broccoli, tomatoes, lettuce, mint, basil and
so much more.
My favourite cooking ingredients are fresh herbs so you can imagine how exciting it is to have a fresh supply on hand right here in our own grounds. Even better is that the children actually do the planting. Part of the curriculum here is caring for our crops from the seeding stage right up until when they are picked and served as part of our menu.
We have found that when children plant and care for their own food, they quickly develop a deep understanding of food cycles, appreciate food more and are more willing to try new things. When their minds are open, they are also much more likely to engage in new experiences with food.
Hopefully, you love these meals as much as we do. I’ve included some great ideas for lunches, dinners and snacks. If I haven’t met you in person yet, please come and say hello. My kitchen door is always open and I’m happy to share how I do occasionally have to hide the veggies in my meals to ensure even the fussiest of eaters get their vitamins and nutrients.
Can I cook for you?
I often make extra food for our parents, family and friends to try. If you’d like to taste some Choklits cooking, connect with us and you’ll know exactly when we have something special for you to try.
As adults, we often associate great food with specific experiences. When you think of Christmas Day lunch, for example, you probably think of having a great time with your family and friends. When you think of your favourite food, you might imagine your favourite beverage on the table as well.
At Choklits, we like to pair our nutritious food with our favourite music. Below are some pairing suggestions for each of the 9 most loved dishes at Choklits. Press play, we’re pretty sure that if you own a copy of Cooking at Choklits, there’s a little learner somewhere nearby that will be happy to sing along with you. Enjoy!
Tuna and rice
Banana or blueberry muffins
Ham, cheese and sundried tomato muffins
Fresh Vegetable Pasta