Back To School Cooking Series:Getting Started

The Joy of Cooking

Sometimes, there are days when nothing can absorb my attention and lift my spirits like going into the kitchen, and starting to cook or bake. There is a feeling of accomplishment when I share a wonderful meal I’ve created with my family and friends.

As I’ve grown older, I’ve learned more and more about cooking; I’ve found friends who like to cook too, and it’s always fun to swap recipes and cook together. Cooking with your kids, begins at home; cooking can take your kids all over the world discovering what people like to eat in other parts of the country like China, Japan, Italy and France. When they learn to cook, they will have a desire to travel and taste dishes that they’ve only read about and they can follow their fork around the world, meeting new friends and sharing the excitement of cooking.

First, before we begin our cooking lessons for kids, we’ll need to go over a couple of things:

The Right Height


It’s very important when kids are cutting, slicing, chopping and mixing ingredients or kneading dough to  have their work surface the right height. The average kitchen counter is a little too high for most young children, so if you have a butcher block cart about 6 inches lower than the counter or even grab a kitchen stool so that kids can stand on it with you close by. Sometimes the kitchen table works too. Just grab a cutting board so you don’t scratch the table.

A kid’s work surface should come to their waist so they have full strength and mobility of their arms and hands to chop vegetables, roll out dough, and knead bread. The butcher block cart pictured above is just the right height for my kids to help make our family’s recipes. If your kids are helping out at the stove, a small stool will work great. Just be sure to keep a close eye on them.

The Friendly Bowl Of Warm Water

Your kids will find their best friend in the kitchen a a big bowl of warm, soapy water, waiting to soak all the kitchen tools and dishes and pans they’ve used to create their recipe. If they dump them in the soapy water right away, they will find it’s much easier to clean them. We all know that if you leave your dirty kitchen tools and dishes lying around, the food gets dry and you have to work much harder to get them clean. A good rule of thumb–If you teach your kids to clean up while theyare waiting for the water to boil, or for something to cool or bake, they will find it much easier when they are finished cooking.

Coming Up Next….What you learn making Vegetable Soup


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