Cooking for children
Posted by infinitygoods on September 4, 2007
In the previous post, I mentioned Chef Emeril Lagasse’s Bam spices, which gave me an idea for today’s blog.
Our son is very much interested in science and experiments. He enjoys experimenting in the kitchen too as an easy way to try out mixing, chemical reactions and such. A couple of months ago he asked to get some cookbooks for some more serious cooking so off to the library we went to look in the children’s section. While the majority of the books at our branch seemed to only have recipes like peanut butter and jelly sandwiches, root beer floats or celery sticks with peanut butter and raisins, Chef Emeril’s had real recipes. Now I think even a child doesn’t need a cookbook to learn how to make a PBJ sandwich. All they need is a parent to show them.
So we took Chef Emeril’s “There’s a Chef in My Soup” cookbook and went home for hands-on cooking lessons. As a parent I was impressed by the introductory sections, especially the one titled “A Good Cook is a Safe Cook!” We read it together and discussed the safety procedures. We looked at all the tools of the trade and our son read every word of the lessons on blanching, working butter into flour, cooking with eggs, etc. as if it were the most exciting action-adventure.
With the preliminaries taken care of we decided on which recipe to make first — 1-2-3 Lasagna. Chef Emeril managed to turn lasagna into child’s play and yet present to the dinner table a scrumptious dish which will remain one of our family traditions.
In the last couple of months our son has bookmarked so many recipes I’ve told him he’d be better off bookmarking the few exceptions he doesn’t want to try. We have made many more recipes and equal numbers of favorites. We picked up Lagasse’s other two children’s cookbooks, “There’s a Chef in My Family” and “There’s a Chef in My World” and have come to the conclusion that his recipes are explained simply for any beginner cook, not just children. The results are consistantly delicious and while the steps are simple, the results are sophisticated for even an experienced cook, or as Chef Emeril says “kicked up a notch.” Children and adults will both enjoy the process as well as the results. It is an excellent opportunity for family bonding and might even be a godsend for working parents coming home tired from work as their children will soon be able to assist them in quickly putting a delicious meal on the table. Our family highly recommends these three cookbooks which are available here on our website at infinitygoods.com.