Children love to do things that are fun. (Hint: They will think it is fun if you are having fun!)
Your attitude will determine the fun factor in these activities. Relax, smile and enjoy!
Whether you are the Dad or the Mom (Grandpa or Grandma) who cooks, or you both like to create meals together, having a plan and participating together is what creates the fun in food preparation. Get the whole family involved in at least one meal a week. Let them help plan it and choose recipes!
Any age can participate. Keep the first food preps simple and easy, especially for beginners and the young. Both boys and girls need to learn their way around a kitchen to prepare for taking care of their health all their life! Create “work station” areas (a section of the counter or table). Add the tools they will need to complete their part of the meal. (Young children can cut fruit with a plastic, serrated knife.) Don’t be critical. This is a fun, learning experience. Praise them when they accomplish their task. Making each person feel important for their part of the meal helps the family to bond.
Fun Food Prep Suggestion:
Build a salad: cut up fruit or vegetables, add nuts or seeds. Add condiments: olives, pickles, salad dressing.
Bake a cake from a mix: sifting flour, cracking and beating eggs, adding water and oil, mixing the batter. Pouring batter into pan and baking. Cool and ice the cake. (Bake from scratch for advanced projects.)
Make scrambled eggs with vegetables. Cut up and sauté in a frying pan: red bell peppers, a handful of greens (kale, chard or spinach) in coconut oil. Crack eggs, scramble, season and add to frying pan.
Stir occasionally until eggs are done.
Bake roots: cut up carrots, medium potatoes, rutabaga, turnip, parsnip, and beet. Put in baking pan with sides. Drizzle oil over roots. Sprinkle with savory herbs and bake.
Make Icebox cookie dough. Roll, wrap and refrigerate. When ready, slice rounds and place on cookie sheet. Sprinkle with colorful sprinkles for a holiday treat or gift.
Gradually add all the recipes for a full meal with each person doing one of the dishes. Make sure they understand the preparation time before and the cleanup time after the meal are part of the process of cooking. When all are working together, playing music, laughing and having fun the family draws together in bonding while learning valuable life skills for their health and longevity!