rochelle-humes

Exclusive: Rochelle Humes swears by this daily drink for amazing skin

The This Morning host opened up about home life with husband Marvin

Former Saturdays singer and This Morning host Rochelle Humes used her time wisely in lockdown, putting all of her most-loved recipes into her first cookbook At Mama's TableThe mum-of-three is passionate about cooking and opened up about her family's foodie loves and loathes when we caught up with her recently for a chat.

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Rochelle, 32, is married to JLS singer Marvin Humes and the couple share two daughters and a son together, Alaia-Mai, eight, Valentina, four, and Blake, one.

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In our exclusive interview, Rochelle tells us all about how she gets her kids involved with cooking, what date nights look like with Marvin and she shares a brilliant daily juice tip for fantastic skin.

Hi Rochelle! Tell us about your cookbook, it looks great for family meals…

"This is my first cookbook. It's something that I've always wanted to do, but never got round to doing. Over lockdown, while the world was unfortunately in chaos and it was a terrible time, we were all trying to be creative weren't we, and think of things that we could do. This became one of them for me."

What are your favourite recipes in the book?

"I change my mind constantly but at the minute I'm making the garlic prawns quite a lot because they are super quick and super tasty. They transport you to a holiday somewhere and they don't take long at all, which is always good."

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Rochelle's new cookbook

What do you eat in a day?

"It looks different every day to be honest. In the morning I'll have a juice to start off the day – that might be a fresh orange, but from the juicer. I like apple, carrot, ginger and I actually have celery straight sometimes. It's really good for you and my skin really notices when I haven't had it. I've been having that for a couple of years. Bizarrely, celery isn't my favourite thing in the world but I'm now really used to it and I like it.

"Then I'll have overnight oats or I make banana pancakes a lot, which is literally just one banana, one egg, a handful or oats, a bit of cinnamon and mix it together, then fry it in coconut oil. I have that with some natural yoghurt and some berries on top and honey. My kids love that actually.

"I'm not the biggest breakfast person – I'm more about lunch and dinner. I'll have maybe a salad for lunch, but it depends where I am. Then in the evening it might be pasta… last night I had salmon and noodles and veg, like a traybake. My evening is my meal where I treat myself."

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What's your snack of choice?

"At the minute I'm obsessed with those rice cakes with the thin line of chocolate on top. They're a good daytime pick me up."

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Rochelle with Marvin and their children

Does Marvin get involved with the cooking at home?

"He's not excited by it like I am. If he did it, he'd probably be good. For me, I find it super therapeutic. He is very good on the barbecue, in fairness, but I feel like that's a really masculine thing isn't it… 'Ooh, I'm great on the barbecue!'"

What does a date night look like for you both?

"We are actually out tonight and we're going to get sushi. If we're going for a date night that's what we'll have because I feel like it's the thing that I can't really cook myself. If I go out I want it to be something that I wouldn't do at home."

Which are your favourite restaurants to go to together?

"It really depends. I'm always up for trying something new. For Sushi, we do really like Roka. There's a Greek restaurant that I'm really into at the moment called Meraki in the centre of London which is gorgeous."

What do your children like to eat?

"My eldest is really good – she'll try anything and she's not fussy at all. I've been all over the world with her and she will always try [food] which I love.

My middle daughter is super particular. She was very fussy; she's got a lot better now. At the minute her line is, 'Well I can eat that now because I'm four and I'm a big girl now'. She's definitely the one who's thrown up the most challenges when it comes to food. She isn't up for trying a lot of things.

"My son is coming out of the weaning phase but I've not yet given him anything that he hasn't liked. He loves his food. His legs get so excited in the high chair when it comes!"

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Rochelle's youngest child Blake

Do your older children, Alaia-Mai and Valentina, like to cook with you?

"Yeah, and I think that's something that's really helped me with Valentina being fussy, just getting her involved and being interactive with food and part of the process. I find if she's been involved, she's a lot more likely to eat it and take pride in it."

What are your favourite things to cook with them?

"As all kids do, they love baking. They honestly like helping me with anything. I give them a little butter knife and let them chop the salad. When I make a stew I sometimes make dumplings, so they like that and mixing it all together and rolling it up. Even if it's just a simple dinner for the night, they like to chop or help."

You've said you like sitting around the table to eat together – why is that important to you?

"I think it's really important to us as a family – it's something we've always done. That time of the night where we eat, we put away ipads or phones or whatever it is. I just think it's a really important time to catch up on our days, especially for the kids.

"I always find they say stuff around the table they might have forgotten to tell you about. Dinner time only has to be about 40 minutes doesn't it? If I do anything in the day, I make sure we've all got time to eat together."

Are table manners big in your house?

"Yeah, I think so. I'm not militant because kids are kids. It's easier for Alaia because she's older and she knows how you should act. They're all pretty good. Manners for me are eating with your mouth closed! I'm not 'no elbows on the table' or things like that. My main thing is not being distracted, being present at dinner time. I'll make sure my phone's not there and I'm not replying to emails.

What are your tips for parents whose children are fussy eaters?

"Sometimes they really won't eat it no matter how you dress it up, and we've all been there. So you can be crafty in the way you chopped veggies super small and put them in a Bolognese and they won't see. There are little hacks you can do but ultimately I really think if they're a part of it, they're more likely to eat it.

"I'll say to Marvin, 'Guess what, Valle made these potatoes'. Next thing she says, 'Potatoes are my favourite ones' and I say, 'That's because you made them'. Then, we've cracked it, she likes potatoes. To be honest, when you think you've cracked it, there'll be another spanner that's thrown in the works.

"There's a funny story… we moved house last year and every single Sunday I make a roast dinner. I always have done and Valle loves gravy all over her roast dinner. We moved in and we were all in boxes but I thought let's cook a roast dinner and use the oven for the first time. So I did and I went to put the gravy on and she screamed. I'm like, 'What are you talking about?' She went, 'I don't like gravy anymore. I only eat gravy at the old house.' I was like, 'Vale that is not a thing because it's exactly the same'.

"Since then she didn't eat gravy anymore until she turned four in March, six months after we moved in. Then she decided she eats it now because she's four and she's a big girl.

"You always have to remember that it's a temporary phase and not get too stressed, because when you get stressed they freak out, they're not going to eat it and you just have to remember that next week they'll probably like it again."

At Mama's Table by Rochelle Humes is out now (Vermilion, £20)


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