The kids are taking over the kitchen! Deanna F. Cook presents more than 50 recipes designed for the cooking abilities and tastes of children ages 6 to 12. Basic cooking techniques are explained in kid-friendly language, and recipes include favorites like applesauce, French toast, popcorn chicken, pizza, and more. Full of fresh, healthy ingredients and featuring imaginative presentations like egg mice, fruit flowers, and mashed potato clouds, Cooking Class brings inspiration and confidence to the chefs of the future.
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|Age Range:||8 - 12 Years|
About the Author
Deanna F. Cook has written award-winning books for kids, including the best-selling Cooking Class and Baking Class, as well as Farmers Market Create-and-Play Activity Book. She has been the creative development director at FamilyFun and has worked as an editor at Scholastic, Disney, and Kidstir.com. She lives in western Massachusetts and can be found online at deannafcook.com.
Read an Excerpt
Welcome to Cooking Class!
Do you like to cook? Maybe you've helped your family in the kitchen with dinner or baked brownies for dessert with your friends. Or maybe you're just hungry for a homemade snack. This book is filled with fun and easy recipes that teach kids how to cook. Each recipe was tested by kids just like you for ease ("Fast!" or "Took too long!"), taste ("Yum!" or "Yuck!"), and overall fun factor.
Before you put on your apron, take some time to read this introductory chapter all the way through. It has helpful tips for junior chefs, like what kitchen tools to have on hand and how to measure carefully. It also shows you how to properly use a paring knife and other ways to be safe in the kitchen. But most important, you'll learn how to cook up some fun in the kitchen!
Each recipe is rated with one, two, or three spoons so you know the skill level needed to complete it. If you are a new chef, you can start with the easier recipes and work your way up.
You can cook most of these recipes without needing a hot stove or using a sharp knife.
You need to do some prep work, such as chopping or dicing. You'll also try out new kitchen skills. These are good recipes to work on with a parent or older sibling.
These recipes involve cutting with sharp knives and using the oven and stovetop. They tend to take more time to prepare, too. If you are just learning to cook, work with an adult.
LESSON 1 Review the Rules
Start good cooking habits from the get-go by following these basic kitchen rules. Ask an adult for permission to make a recipe. Ask for help, too, if you have questions along the way.
1. Wash your hands with warm water and soap before you handle food. Scrub well for 20 seconds, or as long as it takes to recite the alphabet.
2. Roll up long sleeves and wear an apron or smock (an oversize T-shirt will do the trick nicely). Tie back long hair to keep it away from food. You can even wear a bandanna or chef's hat!
3. Read the recipe from start to finish before you begin. Follow the steps closely.
4. Put out all the ingredients from the "Here's What You Need" list to be sure you have everything.
5. Measure carefully (see the tips in lesson 5).
6. Use a timer so you don't burn or overcook anything.
7. Always use pot holders when touching hot pans and dishes.
8. Most important, clean up afterward!
LESSON 2 Get Your Kitchen in Order!
Make a Recipe Collection
Start with the recipes in this book — put a check mark next to each one you try. You can also create your own folder or recipe box for storing recipes from magazines and websites. Use the recipe cards to write down some favorite family recipes or ones that you come up with yourself. (Download and print the recipe cards here:http://bit.ly/cc_recipecards.)
Create a Cooking Kit
Find a box or clear plastic container and stock it with your own cooking tools. Label or decorate your container. (Download and print the stickers here http://bit.ly/cc_stickers.)
You'll want to start with:
* measuring spoons & cups
* paring knife
* rolling pin
* clean scissors
* mixing spoon
* pastry brush
* melon baller
* pizza cutter
Set Up a Good Work Space
* Clear off a kitchen countertop so you have plenty of room to cook. A kitchen table is a great place to prep food, too.
* If the work space is too high for you to comfortably reach, find a sturdy stool to stand on.
* Be sure the floor isn't wet — you don't want to slip and fall!
LESSON 3 Start with Good Ingredients
Make a list before you shop. This will save you time and money, and you won't forget an important ingredient.
Use fresh ingredients as much as possible. Whenever you can, choose organic fruits and veggies. They taste great, have more nutrients, and are better for the environment.
Pick your own. If you're lucky enough to have a garden, you can pick veggies for your recipes. If not, stop at your nearest farmers' market to stock up. These markets usually also sell meats, cheeses, and eggs that are organic and/or local. During the winter, though, frozen vegetables often taste better and have more nutrients than fresh ones shipped from far away.
Store your produce properly until you use it, and clean it well before cooking. Rinse fruits and vegetables under cold water to remove any dirt. Use a scrub brush on hard items like carrots and potatoes to make washing them easier.
LESSON 4 Kitchen Vocabulary
Many of the recipes in this book call for prep work, such as grating carrots or crushing garlic, before you actually make the dish. Read the ingredient list to find out what you need to do. With all your prep work done in advance, you won't have to stop what you're doing as you cook. Here are some words you'll see in recipes.
Beat. To mix rapidly with a wooden spoon, wire whisk, or electric mixer until smooth.
Blend. A blender has very sharp blades that mix solid and liquid ingredients into a smooth paste or liquid. Be sure the top is on properly before you push the button!
Chop. To cut food into pieces about 1 inch square. Chopped ingredients are often used in salads, soups, and stews.
Core. To remove the stem and seeds from the middle of a piece of fruit with a knife or a special slicer or corer.
Crush. To smash an ingredient, often raw garlic, through a press or with the flat side of a knife. You can also use a rolling pin or even a can to crush nuts or seeds.
Dice. To cut food into pieces that are about a /-inch square. Strongly flavored ingredients like onions are often diced so they won't overwhelm the other flavors in the dish.
Grate. To rub ingredients, such as cheese or carrots, against a grater to cut them into shreds. If the food gets too small, stop grating to protect your fingers. When you grate pieces of citrus, its called zesting (seehere).
Juice. To squeeze the juice from citrus fruit by cutting it in half and pressing the halves on a juicer. If you are juicing and zesting the same piece of fruit, it's easier to do the zesting first.
Mince. To cut food, usually herbs and other flavoring ingredients, into tinier pieces than chopping or dicing. You can mince herbs with a small knife, but using scissors is easier.
Mix. To use a spoon or electric mixer to combine ingredients so they are evenly distributed. Use a mixing bowl that is big enough to hold everything with some extra space to avoid spills.
Peel. Remove the skin from a fruit or vegetable by peeling it with a vegetable peeler. There are two kinds of peelers: a straight peeler and a Y-shape peeler (shown).
Process. Some of the recipes in this book ask you to use a food processor. Read the manual or ask an adult for help the first time. Lock the top in place before you turn it on. Be extra careful when removing the blade for cleaning.
Slice. To cut food into longer or thicker pieces. You can cut tortillas and other flat foods with a pizza slicer instead of a knife. Simply hold the pizza wheel firmly and roll it through the food in a straight line moving away from your body.
Whisk. Whisks come in many sizes for mixing dry or wet ingredients until they are well combined. Whisking works better with liquids; thick batters can get stuck in the wires.
Once all your prep work is done, you can start cooking! There's a whole vocabulary of cooking terms, too. Here are a few that you'll use in this book.
WARNING: These skills involve using a hot stove or grill. Be extra careful around boiling water, hot oil, and open flames.
Bake or roast. These terms both mean to cook with dry heat in the oven, usually in an uncovered baking sheet or roasting pan. Baking is more often used with bread, cookies, and cakes, while roasting usually refers to meats and vegetables.
Boil. To heat liquid at high temperature on the stovetop. When a liquid boils, bubbles rise rapidly to the surface. Always use a saucepan that is big enough to keep ingredients from boiling over the top.
Fry. This is a stovetop method of cooking food in an open pan in hot oil. Frying food can splatter the oil, so watch out.
Grill. To cook food over a gas or charcoal fire outside.
Melt. To turn a solid into a liquid by applying low heat, such as melting butter in a saucepan or on a griddle, or melting chocolate chips in the microwave.
Sauté. To cook food lightly in a little oil in a frying pan or skillet.
Simmer. Turn the heat down to low to simmer liquids. The bubbles rise to the surface much more slowly than they do when the liquids are boiling.
Toast. To brown lightly on both sides. You can do this on a griddle or with a panini grill as well as a regular toaster.
LESSON 5 Measure Up
When following a recipe, it's important to measure the ingredients carefully. Here are some tips:
Liquid ingredients. Measure amounts of milk, water, and other liquids in a glass or plastic measuring cup. Pour the liquid into the cup and read the measure from eye level. For smaller measures, like a teaspoon, use measuring spoons.
Dry ingredients. It's important to measure flour, sugar, and other dry ingredients with dry measuring cups or measuring spoons that can be leveled off. Fill the cup or spoon with the ingredient, and then run the back of a butter knife across it to get an exact measure.
Equivalents & Conversions
Here's a handy chart to help you convert recipe measurements.
LESSON 6 Careful with the Sharp Stuff!
Many of the recipes in this book require that you use a knife, grater, food processor, or other sharp tools. It's easy to slip and cut your finger, so always work slowly and make sure your hands aren't wet and slippery.
Knives. All of the cutting can be done with a small paring knife (some soft foods can be cut with a plastic picnic knife or clean scissors instead). Make sure your paring knife is sharpened properly (dull knives are more dangerous because they can slip while you're cutting), and hold it firmly, with your fingers out of the way of the blade.
Kitchen scissors. A safer alternative to a sharp knife is a pair of scissors. Use kids' scissors instead super-sharp kitchen shears designed for adult hands. Keep a new pair in the kitchen for cooking projects.
Graters and peelers. When you use a grater, whether for a chunk of cheese or a small carrot, watch out that you don't accidentally grate the tip of your finger or your knuckles. That can really hurt! The same goes for vegetable peelers, which can slip. Always push the blade away from your fingers, not toward them.
Blenders and food processors. Be very careful when working with a blender or food processor, whether you are fitting the blades into the machine or taking them out to be washed. Never try to operate a blender or food processor with the lid off, and of course, never stick a spoon or spatula into the bowl without turning the machine completely off first.
LESSON 7 Cooking with Heat
Before you turn on the stove or oven, be sure to check first with an adult. He or she can show you the proper way to use the range and explain the different settings. When something is cooking on the stove, always stay in the kitchen!
* Always use oven mitts when handling hot pans and baking trays.
* When you open the oven, avoid the blast of heat that will rise up in your face.
* Turn pan handles to the side so the pans don't accidentally get knocked off the stove.
* Be extra careful around boiling water and hot oil because steam and spattering fat can cause serious burns.
* Switch off the stovetop or oven when you have finished cooking.
* Different microwave ovens have different directions, so ask an adult to show you how to use yours.
* Never use metal or aluminum foil in the microwave. Always use microwave-safe dishes. Glass, paper towels, and most plastic containers are fine. If you aren't sure, ask an adult to show you which ones are safe. The wrong material could damage the microwave or even cause a fire.
* Be careful of escaping steam when lifting lids or plastic wrap from microwave dishes — it can burn you. If the microwave is located up high or over the stove, ask an adult to remove the hot dishes.
LESSON 8 Clean Up
When you finish cooking, don't forget to leave the kitchen sparkling clean. Put away the ingredients, wipe down the countertop, and start the dishwasher. Here are some friendly reminders.
Put away all your ingredients. It's especially important to return milk, meat, and other perishables to the refrigerator.
Wipe down countertops and kitchen appliances with a wet sponge or kitchen washcloth.
Load the dishwasher neatly with cups and dishes and start it when it's full.
Wash pots and pans in hot, soapy water. Don't forget to scrub the handles and bottoms of the pots, too!
Compost non-meat food scraps such as vegetable peels, watermelon rinds, and crumbled eggshells.
Pick a Job, any Job!
Nobody likes to clean up, but everyone should pitch in to get it done. A fun (and fair) way to divide up the chores is to make a jar full of job sticks.
Write each task on a clean popsicle or craft stick. Put them in a jar and have everyone pick a job to do. That way no one gets stuck doing the same chore all the time. Here are some suggestions, but you can make the sticks fit your own household routine:
* Empty the dishwasher
* Load the dishwasher
* Wash pots and pans
* Dry pots and pans
* Wipe off the countertops and clean the sink
* Sweep the kitchen floor
* Take out the trash and/or recycling
My daughters, Ella and Maisie, always liked to include a "Free Card" stick so that the person who chose it could get off the hook for one job!
LESSON 9 Time to Eat!
One of the best things about cooking is sharing what you've made with family and friends.
Start by setting a nice table. The picture below shows where to put the silverware (forks go on the left and the knife and spoon on the right). Glasses should be placed just above the knife.
Special touches. It's fun to add a vase of fresh flowers as a centerpiece and make special place cards for everyone at the table. (Download the place cards here: http://bit.ly/cc_placecards.)
Don't forget the napkins! Fold up some cloth napkins and set them on the table, too. You can find a fun way to fold them in the sidebar on the opposite page.
HOW TO ...
Fold a Fancy Napkin
1. Fold a napkin in half to make a triangle. Then fold over the two ends to make a square.
2. Fold under one end of the napkin along the dotted line to make another triangle.
3. Bring the two ends toward each other to make a peak.
4. Now the napkin will stand on the table!
Good morning! Ready to cook up the first meal of the day? In this chapter, you'll find easy and tasty recipes for eggs, granola bars, and even fancy French crêpes. You'll also learn how to make breakfast in bed for your parents on Mother's Day and Father's Day. And how about cooking up some perfect pancakes with friends after a sleepover? So rise and shine and start cooking!
My Own Cinnamon Sugar Freshly Squeezed Orange Juice Breakfast Sundaes
Mix-and-Match Fruit Flower Garden Have a Hard-Boiled Egg Grab-and-Go Granola Bars
Ella's Egg Sandwiches French Toast on a Stick Sleepover Party Pancakes Crêpes with Nutella and Bananas Wallace's Omelets
My Own Cinnamon Sugar
Makes 1/2 cup
Keep a jar of this sweet stuff in your kitchen. Sprinkle it on toast, oatmeal, and Cream of Wheat for a breakfast treat. It makes a great teacher gift, too!
HERE'S WHAT YOU NEED
* ½ cup sugar
* 2 tablespoons cinnamon
* Spice jar and label
HERE'S WHAT YOU DO
1. Measure the sugar and cinnamon into a bowl.
2. Use a spoon or mini whisk to mix it together.
3. Store in a spice jar with a label made by you.
Freshly Squeezed Orange Juice
Makes 1 cup
Sure, you can quickly pour yourself a glass of orange juice from a carton. But with a few squeezes, you can make your own unprocessed OJ that tastes fresh from the tree.
HERE'S WHAT YOU NEED
* 1 or 2 oranges
* Manual juicer
HERE'S WHAT YOU DO
1. Ask an adult to help you cut the orange in half. Squeeze each orange half on a juicer. Twist it back and forth until all the juices are released.
2. Pick out the seeds. Pour the juice into a glass.
3. Drink it right up! It's fun to experiment with different kinds of oranges and even grapefruit.
Makes 4 sundaes
Want to eat dessert for breakfast? Set up a sundae bar. It's a berry sweet way to start your day.
HERE'S WHAT YOU NEED
* 8 strawberries
* 1 banana
* cup fresh blueberries or raspberries
* 2 cups yogurt
* 1 cup cereal, such as granola or whole-grain O-shapes
HERE'S WHAT YOU DO
1. Slice the strawberries into a bowl. Slice the banana into another bowl. Put the blueberries or raspberries in a third bowl.
2. Set out a bowl of yogurt and a bowl of dry cereal. Put a serving spoon by each bowl.
3. Then let everyone at the breakfast table dig in and build their own breakfast sundae with layers of yogurt, fruit, and cereal.
Excerpted from "Cooking Class"
Copyright © 2015 Deanna F. Cook.
Excerpted by permission of Storey Publishing.
All rights reserved. No part of this excerpt may be reproduced or reprinted without permission in writing from the publisher.
Excerpts are provided by Dial-A-Book Inc. solely for the personal use of visitors to this web site.
Table of ContentsChapter One: Welcome to Cooking Class
Lesson 1: Review the Rules
Lesson 2: Get Your Kitchen in Order
Lesson 3: Start with Good Ingredients
Lesson 4: Kitchen Vocabulary
Lesson 5: Measure Up
Lesson 6: Careful with Sharp Stuff!
Lesson 7: Cooking with Heat
Lesson 8: Clean Up
Lesson 9: Time to Eat!
Chapter Two: Breakfast Cafe
My Own Cinnamon Sugar
Freshly Squeezed Orange Juice
Mix-and-Match Fruit Flower Garden
Have a Hard-Boiled Egg
Grab-and-Go Granola Bars
Ella's Egg Sandwiches
French Toast on a Stick
Crepes with Nutella and Bananas
Chapter Three: Lunch Lessons
Homemade Peanut Butter
PB & Honey Pockets
Mix-and-Match Sandwich Shop
Chapter Four: Snack Attack
Berry Good Smoothies
Minty Melon Bubbles
My Own Microwave Popcorn
Mix-and-Match Trail Mix
We Love Biscuits!
Mean Green Guacamole
Gorgeous Garden Salsa
Tortilla Chips from Scratch
Chapter Five: Eat Your Veggies
Salad Dressing Factory
Mix-and-Match Salad Bar
Tiny Tomato Toasts
Think Spring Rolls
Iris's Corn & Black Bean Salad
Chapter Six: My First Dinners
Bow-Tie Pasta with Tomatoes, Basil & Fresh Mozzarella
Cheesy Bean Quesadillas
Mix-and-Match Pizza Party
Sushi! California Rolls
Fantastic Fish Tacos
Excellent Egg Rolls
Chapter Seven: Time For Dessert
Dipped Strawberry Dessert
Mix-and- Match Chocolate Factory
Hot Cocoa Pops
Very Vanilla Pudding
Amazing Apple Crisp
Little Lemon Squares
Maisie's Carrot Cupcakes
Most Helpful Customer Reviews
I am a firm believer in teaching kids to cook, and this is a great cookbook for doing just that! It's well and good to teach one on one familiar dishes; I think kids need to learn how to cook WITHOUT a recipe all the time, but they also need to learn how to cook from a recipe as well. One of my daughters just turned 13 yesterday and is passionate about learning to cook. This book works great for her as well as my younger daughter. It covers beginning cooking instructions, breakfast, lunch, snacks, veggies, dinner and dessert. From the supper simple such as how to hard boil an egg or mix and match sandwich shop or dipped strawberries to the more complicated such as crepes, spring rolls or meringue nests, there is something for every level of expertise in your little ones. I love that they can start simple and work their way to harder recipes all in one cookbook. The photography is colorful and very informative. Step-by-step photos are included for many of the recipes helping the child follow the recipe even better. My older daughter just fell in love with California sushi rolls, so is thrilled to have the instructions to make her own! I highly recommend this cookbook to families with kids. Even if they don't have a desire to learn to cook at the moment, this colorful, fun book just might be the inspiration they need! I received a copy of this book from Storey Publishing for my honest review. All thoughts and opinions are my own.
I have 14 grandchildren and saw these books at one of their homes and loved it. so, I purchased as gifts for a grandson who is 6 and loves to bake. His birthday isn't until March, but I may give to him early because I know he would love them
A recipient of the Mom's Choice Awards! The Mom's Choice Awards® (MCA) evaluates products and services created for parents and educators and is globally recognized for establishing the benchmark of excellence in family-friendly media, products and services. Using a rigorous evaluation process, entries are scored on a number of elements including production quality, design, educational value, entertainment value, originality, appeal and cost. Around the world, parents, educators, retailers and members of the media trust the MCA Honoring Excellence seal when selecting quality products and services for families and children.
A few years ago, I searched for a kids' cookbook that I could love and that my kids could enjoy and follow easily. I was so surprised by the variety of cookbooks and the poorly written directions they included. In particular, I remember looking at Paula Deen's cookbook for children. The small print, light type, and colored background... I wanted a better cookbook for my kids! For me, cookbooks are inspiring (even if I almost never follow a recipe exactly)! I ended up finding one that I loved-- Kids Cook!, a Williamson Kids Can book that is now back in print. But, there are no photographs in the cookbook. My kids love color and they are not drawn to that cookbook. On the other hand, a new cookbook arrived at our doorstep last week and my kids hovered over it--drinking in the recipes, excited to cook! That cookbook is Cooking Class by Deanna F. Cook. A few years ago, Storey published two cookbooks for kids about sewing that I like: Sewing School and Sewing School 2. With this cookbook for kids, Storey followed the same format and editing style--which I loved back then and love again with this new cookbook. Cooking Class is divided into seven sections that cover the basics, meals, snacks, and of course--dessert! The Basics section is what I have found lacking in most kids' cookbooks, but in this one, it is done well. Good tips, good pictures, and even a page on how to clean up! I like that they added two pages on how to fold a fancy napkins and setting the table. I have a feeling that our next holiday meal will have some beautifully folded napkins! From there, the recipe sections begin. The recipes are divided into 1, 2, or 3 spoons. 1 spoon recipes can be made by kids themselves. 2 spoon recipes might need an older sibling or parent's help. 3 spoon recipes use sharp knives and the oven/stove, so an adult is most likely needed for kids under 10 or 11. My daughters are 9 and 11 and are uncomfortable with the oven and can turn on the gas stove, but usually prefer me to do that. The recipes are easy to follow and have great pictures which give clear instructions. The reading level (because of the size of the type) is probably 3rd grade and above. I know that my first grade son can read most of the words in these directions, but the size of the type would be a stumbling block for him. Our first recipe we tried from the cookbook was the grab and go granola bars. I was a little skeptical about how my kids would like them since they aren't baked, but my whole family ended up loving them! I think next time, though, I am going to try and mix the chocolate chips into the mixture and then press into the pan so that the chocolate chips are mixed throughout the bars and aren't just on top. I suspect that within a few months every recipe in this cookbook will have been tried by my kids! Aside from the recipes, the cookbook includes some fun stickers, place cards, and conversation questions for the dinner table. These are of high quality and my kids have enjoyed them all. I think you get the idea... when choosing a great kids' cookbook, this one tops my list! (and has been added to my list of favorite cookbooks) Please note that I received a complimentary copy of this cookbook for review from Storey publishing.