Executive Chef Brendan Collins has the culinary career most chefs can only dream of. He began cooking in his native England at the age of 15 and has never looked back. From cooking in Michelin-starred kitchens from London to Los Angeles, Chef Collins has attained extraordinary success in his culinary career, but it’s his family that’s the main passion in his life. Chef Collins currently lives in Los Angeles with his wife Eden and their daughter Saffy and he recently shared some insights with Red Tricycle about his life as a dad and a full time chef of two restaurants (Waterloo & City in Culver City and Larry’s in Venice), his favorite quick and easy kids recipes, and tips on how to get his daughter to try new foods.

As a working parent, what’s your go-to dinner recipe when your time in the evening is limited? 
Roasted chicken breast with mac and cheese, and salad for me and Eden, simple, easy and absolutely no drama!!

Are there any surprising foods that your kids love that you never thought to serve them?
Recently and out of nowhere Saffy loves cherry tomatoes, with a touch of olive oil, vinegar and sea salt.

What’s your best technique for getting your kids to try new foods?
Both mine and Edens parents live thousands of miles away from us so Saffy became more of a sidekick always by our/Edens side. We take her everywhere we go and with everyone that we go with, so she has very well developed table manners and pallet, probably because she felt peer pressure from being the only kid at a full table of adults. On the occasion that she out right refuses to even try something and we are not talking about veal kidneys here, then i threaten to stop taking her to the hello kitty store on our weekly daddy/daughter dates, it works every time!! 

What did your family eat for dinner last night? 
Pork and soy ramen, chicken gyoza, and tofu i did not cook it but it was delicious as Saffy quite rightly pointed out

If we took a peek in your kids lunch box, what would we find?
Cherry tomatoes, peeled baby carrots, roast turkey, cheesy gold fish, hummus and cucumber (peeled and seeded, i mean really?? yes madam!!).

What’s the one food that you can’t live without?
I pretty much live two lives — one is at the restaurant where i could not live without pork and every last bit of it including the blood, and at home it’s vinegar, cabernet sauvignon, balsamic, and most importantly malt, which we use as a condiment in our house. It goes on and in everything.

Chef Collins even shared with us his favorite quick and easy kids recipes including grilled chicken meatballs, mozzarella and tomato salad, and fried rabbit Southern/British style. Our mouth is watering — is yours?

Chef Brendan Collins is the Executive Chef and founder of Larry’s Venice and Waterloo & City in Culver City. England-native Collins has worked in a variety of Michelin-starred establishments throughout London and Los Angeles during his acclaimed career. Chef Collins currently resides in Los Angeles with his wife Eden Rountree Collins and their daughter Saffron Rose Collins.