Wombat Stew Cookbook, by Marcia K Vaughan & Pamela Lofts

Few Australian children are not familiar with the delightful picture book Wombat Stew with its refrain of: wombat stew, wombat stew, gooey, brewy, yummy chewy, wombat stew and a host of delightful Aussie animal characters. The Wombat Stew Cookbookis a delightful complement to the picture book, filled with yummy recipes that are easy for kids to make with minimal parental help.

The book includes recipes for main dishes, salads and vegetables, bread, drinks and desserts, as well as helpful information about measuring, cooking terms and safety in the kitchen. Kids and parents will enjoy cooking such delights as Bandicoot ginger biscuits and Echidna avocado dip and will love the accompanying illustrations of the animals from Wombat Stew enjoying the dishes.

Yummy fun.

Wombat Stew Cookbook, by Marcia K Vaughan & Pamela Lofts
Scholastic, first edition 1989, this edition 2006

Wombat Stew, by Marcia K. Vaughan, illustrated by Pamela Lofts

One fine day, on the banks of a billabong, a very clever dingo caught a wombat…
and decided to make…
Wombat stew,
Wombat stew,
Gooey, brewy,
Yummy, chewy,
Wombat stew!

Of course the poor Wombat isn’t very keen to be made into stew, but his clever friends have a sneaky way to help outwit Dingo. Each friend tells Dingo he is missing an essential ingredient for his stew, so soon Dingo is adding mud, feathers, flies, bugs and more. But, when he tastes the stew, he thinks he’s been poisoned and hurries away leaving Wombat and his friends celebrating.

This classic Australian picture book was first launched twenty one years ago and, to celebrate, has just been re-released by Scholastic Australia. The rhythmic text and the repetition of the ‘Wombat Stew’ chant make it very appealing to young readers, who will join in on the first or second read. Pamela Lofts’ illustrations are a delight, with amusing yet somehow lifelike Australian animals peppering the pages. Even the mean Dingo is cute and dopey rather than scarey.

Loads of fun.

Wombat Stew, by Marcia K Vaughan and Pamela Lofts
Scholastic, 2005