12yo from Muriwai wins best children's cookbook

12yo from Muriwai wins best children's cookbook

Lots of children decide to stop eating meat when they realise animals die for it, but one girl from Auckland's Muriwai beach has taken it a step further, and it's won her an international competition.

Twelve-year-old Clara Donne's vegetarian cookbook has been named the best children's cookbook in the world.

Lookout Jamie Oliver, there's a new Kiwi kid cooking on the block, and she's taken top honours at the Gourmand International Cookbook Awards in China.

Clara beat thousands of entries from more than 200 countries. The shortlist alone was 150.

Thanks to efforts by the local community, Clara went to China to receive the award.

By writing a vegetarian cookbook, she wanted to encourage others to go meat-free.

"I grasped where meat came from and I just couldn't believe it," she says. "I just decided I wouldn't eat meat anymore."

At the age of just six, Clara wrote to the Prime Minister asking for a law change to stop animals being killed for food. John Key wrote back, but since he wouldn't change the law, Clara took a different course of action.

"More people would have to be vegetarian and agree with my ideas before anything could happen, so I wrote the cookbook."

While mum Taina Henderson isn't strictly vegetarian, she cooks a lot of Clara's recipes, and is as proud as punch.

"It took her a long time of sticking at it because she was six when this started, and for a child the process of making food is a lot longer than the idea."

Clara's not sure what her next project will be, but for now she's happy to be saving one animal at a time, by winning over one cook at a time.