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Nutritious, delicious cooking for health and happiness Submitted Story | Wed, Mar 21 2012 10:27 PM

In decades past, home cooked meals were a staple. Family dinners were a place to eat and share the day’s events with mom serving healthy entrees along with good conversation. It seems today life is so busy, these end of the day rituals have fallen by the wayside. Not anymore. Piccolo Chef is committed to promoting and teaching moms and their kids how to cook and eat in a fun and healthy way.

Piccolo Chef Founders Tina Fanelli Moraccini and Lilian Palmieri are moms with a vision to make healthy cooking attainable and fun for children of all ages.

Their philosophy is simple. “We believe your family can eat healthy meals crafted quickly, simply and on a budget. We believe that our kitchens are magical places where the entire family will discover the power in quality, organic ingredients and delicious recipes – all mixed together and cooked with the warmth of love.” says Moraccini.

These mom-preneurs opened Piccolo Chef to teach children and their parents the art of healthy cooking and reconnecting with one another through all phases of the cooking process from the garden to the table.

As mothers we were alarmed at the way our children were scarfing down unhealthy, chemical-laden junk food,” said Moraccini. “So, my Piccolo Chef co-founder Lilian and I set our sights on helping stressed out, working moms and dads to reignite the love and intelligence of our family kitchens – the way it was when we were little kids and the house always smelled of delicious fresh foods cooking on the stove.”

Palmieri added, “We are striving with so many others in this movement – from First Lady Michelle Obama to Chef Alice Waters and Chef Jaime Oliver – to educate families across the country about the importance of healthy, nutritionally balanced food. We also want grown-ups and children to smile again when it comes to mealtime, and to feel good about sharing these special moments and memories. There is plenty of time for video games and TV after you eat a wonderful meal.”

Starting as a tiny cooking school for children in Culver City in 2008, Piccolo Chef has expanded with a broader, more determined national mission to help teach moms and dads across the web the importance of healthy, affordable eating at a time when diabetes and obesity among American children has exploded into a nationwide epidemic. According to the National Center for Health Statistics, childhood obesity in America has more than tripled during the past 30 years and the statistics are expected to continue skyrocketing.

Piccolo Chef has also attracted leading Hollywood talent and celebrity chefs to join in the class and the fun, including famed Los Angeles Chef Celestino Drago; singer/actress Debi Derryberry (the voice of “Jimmy Neutron”); Drake Hogestyn (long-time star of “Days of Our Lives” and former New York Yankee); Robinne Lee (star of “Seven Pounds,” “Hitch” and “Hotel For Dogs”); and two-time, world-champion pizza maker Fabio Ferrari, from Rimini, Italy who showed our Piccolo Chefs how to make the best healthy pizza ever.

There is room for everyone at the table. Small children learn about the wonders of cracking an egg for the first time and the joy of pounding pizza dough. They learn all the amazing things that can go into making their meals, from planting tomato seeds to preparing fresh carrots to the final spotless clean up that says, “We did it together!”

Moraccini says, “We learn about the history of foods and cooking. We talk about different world cultures. We study proper table manners and etiquette. We work together as a team to make amazing new dishes. And we bring the family together in ways that many of us have forgotten or lost in the haste and stress of our do-it-all schedules.”

For more information contact Piccolo Chef www.piccolochef.com

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