Katie Workman, author of The Mom 100 Cookbook, tells how to win over children and adults alike with recipes like her turkey meatballs—mild for kids, spicy for grown-ups.

Family Dinner Table

Katie Workman’s delicious menu features adult- and kid-friendly recipes. Photo © Lucy Schaeffer.

Since I’m the Editor in Chief of Food & Wine, people often ask me about my kids’ eating habits. Are they picky? Omnivores? My 11-year-old, Sylvie, will eat almost anything locavoresque, and my nine-year-old, William, almost nothing—except when we go to a party at Katie Workman’s place. Katie edited and marketed a bazillion cookbooks at Clarkson Potter and Workman Publishing before quitting in 2007 to focus on her own cooking. She has tons of experience making meals for her husband, Gary, and their two kids, as well as a ceaseless tide of friends, like my culinarily entitled children and me. At Katie’s, William the White-Food-Only Eater becomes ravenous, devouring 15 meatballs in a sitting. (OK, maybe just 10, but that’s a lot for a skinny kid.) Now Katie has written The Mom 100 Cookbook, with solutions to everyday food conundrums. She includes recipes that both kids and grown-ups will like, such as those delicious meatballs: She prepares a mild version for kids, then adds a little spicy sausage to the mix for adults. Katie has met every food challenge I can think of, except one of the toughest: how to get William to eat string beans.

Katie Workman says, “There aren’t a lot of things more important than feeding your family, but even those of us who like to cook sometimes feel like throwing a spoonful of peas at our kids when they’re cranky about dinner.”