Thursday, February 18, 2010

Little Cooks with Books

 Jamie Oliver's Ted Talk got me thinking about a lot of things, but one thing in particular.   American families and schools are no longer teaching children how to cook.  I really hadn't thought about his, but it is so true.  How can we expect our children to grow up and cook healthy meals for themselves (and/or their families) when we don't directly teach them how?

This truly resonates with me because I was never taught to cook.  My mother died when I was nine years old and my father never remarried.  Dad did the best he could, but with little time and money he turned to many convenience foods.  This left me with little to no skill.  Luckily, I married a man that enjoys cooking.

For most of our marriage John has done the cooking.  Yes, I am lucky.  However, when I began working from home it just made more sense for me to cook dinner.  Therefore, I decided to teach myself how to cook.  I watched lots of Food Network, read cookbooks, and experimented.  This was not the easiest way to learn.  For this reason, I have decided to consciously teach my children how to cook.

Both of my girls are used to helping me in the kitchen and most of the time they really enjoy it.  However, they usually only want to help when I am baking.  Sure it is great to know how to bake cookies and quick breads, but they aren't great "go-to" recipes.  So, starting this weekend, the kids will be preparing one dinner a week.  To make it fun, I am going to connect the dinner with a children's book.  We will read the book as a family and then the kids and I will cook the accompanying dinner.   I think this will be a fun and motivating way for them to learn how to prepare healthy, "real food" recipes.

To make it even more fun ~ the girls will be blogging about their experiences.  They will take the pictures and will write about their experiences.  I will type the post and add links when necessary.  Our blog series will be called "Little Cooks with Books".  I hope you will follow along.  It should be interesting!