So last weekend, my 11-year-old niece announced she’s playing master chef and we’re all invited! After mulling over choices (which had to be a blend of safety & adventure by the way!), we zeroed down on pizzas! So in came the pepperoni and the sausages and the cheese and the sauce. The fact that baking and not cooking on direct flame was involved, bought in the safety bit. The adventure quotient was fulfilled by constant protests of, “I will do it myself!”. The pizzas were real tasty and the experience was truly overwhelming and I discovered, children make excellent cooks. So here is a list of options you could propose to your child, the next time they want to enter the kitchen.
Full room for experimenting and the results are rather delicious. Guide your child to slice the meats while you can sauté’ them in the frying pan. Remember, you are playing sous chef! Spreading out the sauce on the base, arranging the toppings as they please, sprinkling the veggies that you have cut and the cheese that you may have grated, choosing the seasonings and flakes, putting the pizza in the oven and finally seeing the cheese melt – all steps your little one is going to love to the core.
I too was surprised that the little one could do this! With a print out of the recipe in one hand and the whisk in the other, my 13-year-old niece was ready to make the day special for her momma! With simple ingredients like silicon holders, cocoa powder, baking powder, butter, milk, eggs & baking soda, this young adult was on way to achieving a milestone! Basic setting on the oven was all the help required from the “grown-up” world and voila! Heart shaped chocolate cupcakes were ready to decorate the birthday platter, complete with flowers, a card, ribbons and of course the gift!
Kiddie Souvlaki Platter
Reasonably predictable, but kids rather fancy it because the final outcome looks pretty grand. So you assist your little magician in cutting out kebabs into bite-sized pieces. While you sauté’ the same on the gas or grill them on the coal, the lil one can get about to whisking curd in a bowl & adding in some crushed garlic. Have the lil ones roll in the meats into the pita bread & place a toothpick in the centre to hold everything in place. Roll out individual plates for everyone; a roll, some dip & salad – how about a face with lettuce & eyes made of black olives!
Kids love putting small things together. Let them experiment. Crackers, mini garlic bread, cheese, olives, cherries, a thick dip, cucumber, tuna! Let them play around & make magic with colours, shapes, textures and even tastes!
Get a little messy, ensure that you have some dough on your cheeks, remember to lick your fingers and make sure you have fun!