David Cameron attempted to underline Brussels' wasteful spending by waving a copy of the European Union funded colouring book 'Mr & Mrs MEP' at a dinner with other leaders, according to Press Association sources.
Some 15,000 copies of the booklet have been printed for distribution at open days run by the European Parliament.
German Chancellor Angela Merkel in particular had been "astounded" that taxpayers were funding such material, the sources said.
Mr Cameron said today: "At first they thought that it was a hoax by the Telegraph (who revealed the existence of the booklet on Wednesday) ... I had to convince them that it was a genuine, scandalous waste of money.
"It is pretty sexist at that - because Mrs MEP stops at 6pm to go shopping, Mr MEP goes on till 6.40pm."
He went on: "Without giving away too many names, a number of other European leaders were pretty appalled by this and this is the sort of thing the EU need to cut out if it is to have any chance of winning people's confidence that it spends money carefully."