For quite a while now, most weekends I involve all my children in cooking a meal or two.
This was how I learnt in my mothers’ kitchen and it’s invaluable to start them young (as soon as they are old enough to help with bringing the tomatoes) for so many reasons.
- It builds their self-esteem, confidence and they feel like valued contributors.
- It helps to grow their sense of independence so that even when you are not around, they can easily cope on their own.
- It helps you a great deal on days that you are just too worn out to think straight. They can easily whip up an omelette for you.
- It’s fun and offers a great bonding time as well. We swap stories or just generally chit-chat.
- It offers them the opportunity to learn a basic life skill and you never know what direction life can take them.
- Real life science and opportunity to experiment.
- Calculation skills are introduced here as well as better comprehension; I ask them to write down what they learnt or to read a recipe and explain it to me.
- You increase their imagination – to the point that my children now hunt for new recipes that we can try 🙂
- A nice way of sneaking in the vegetables, since ordinarily, two of my children avoid veggies, but taking part in making it does a wonderful thing to the mind.
…and yes, the food tastes extra special 🙂
Yesterday, we made our own version of baked potatoes and vegetable casserole with meatballs.
My daughter selected and washed the items according to my directions – I was the Operations Director 😉
They all participated in the paring, grating, cubing of the vegetables and potatoes, whilst mommy’s responsibility was to add the spices, assemble the processed items and set it to bake.
Unfortunately, I forgot to take pictures of the finished product before we dug into it, luckily, I took a couple of photos when we started.
1 big sweet potatoes – peeled, washed and grated
3 medium sized Irish potatoes – peeled, washed and cubed
Half a head of Broccoli
3 large tomatoes
1 large onions
4 medium carrots – peeled, washed and grated
4 big white mushrooms
I large yellow bell pepper.
2 beaten eggs for binding.
Fresh garlic – out of a clove, I use like 4 pieces.
Spinach – a handful
A sprinkle of parsley
Oregano – half teaspoon
A dash of curry spice
Salt – 3 teaspoons
2 cubes of Maggi stock
25-50 gms of grated cheddar cheese – layered through and sprinkled on top.
1 pack of minced meat – spiced and rolled into balls with breadcrumbs.
Served a family of 5 with generous helpings and leftovers 🙂
Have a great weekend and do share your tips with us.
© Jacqueline Oby-Ikocha
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From the very first poem, “Dreams,” this book captivates with passionate and perceptive words. Jacqueline Oby-Ikocha captures a broad expanse of the human experience in this book of richly layered poems.