Your Kids: Cooking! (Book/DVD) Review
“A recipe for turning ordinary kids into extraordinary cooks”
As parents, we spend a lot of time steering kids away from things that can be dangerous – knives, hot stoves, pots of boiling water. But at some point, we do need to loosen the reins a bit and give our kids the freedom to learn how to do things independently. Of course, it’s a fine line being allowing kids a little autonomy and throwing them to the wolves, and walking that line can be a difficult task. How do you give your kids confidence by letting them have free rein in the kitchen without unnecessarily endangering them? Your Kids: Cooking! is a system designed to do just that.
Using step-by-step instructions and a twofold book and dvd system, it covers everything kids will need to know to be successful in the kitchen, all while under the watchful eye of their adult sous chef (parent). Because it is designed with kids in mind, the system explains everything down to the last detail, including sections on how to properly use a knife safely, descriptions of kitchen tools and how to use them safely, and a guided dvd that shows viewers exactly how to do every step in the process.
On top of that, the recipes in the book are meant to build on top of each other, with the complete novice beginning with the relatively simple task of preparing french toast working their way on to more difficult recipes like chicken parmesan and pot roast. By the end of the book, kids are well seasoned chefs who have mastered the basics of everything they’ll need to be successful in the kitchen – and that builds a lot of confidence (not to mention how awesome it is as a parent to let the kids handle supper here and there).
The book and dvd are set up to work in conjunction with each other – although each one separately contains everything you need for the recipes featured. By using them together, you have the best of both worlds. Kids can learn how to use a cookbook, and this one contains step-by-step instructions as well as pictures, so there isn’t any confusion about how to carry out the instructions. The dvd uses the same technique, explaining everything from how to measure a level tablespoon to how to properly flip with a spatula. The dvd is also divided into the same sections as the book. First it shows a preview of the recipe, and then it moves on to showing kids how to properly do all of the steps involved in getting ready to prepare the recipe – measuring out ingredients and preparing utensils. Once the steps are shown, the dvd pauses at a menu while the kids perform all of those steps, and all of the steps are listed for them to easily review if needed.
Once all of the get ready steps are finished, kids click “continue”, and the dvd then moves on to the cooking portion. Again, all of the steps are shown in detail, and the dvd pauses at a listed menu in case they need to review any of the steps. Everything is laid out in detail, right down to plating, so there isn’t any confusion. Once the kids have successfully completed the recipe, they can check out a couple others in the book that will build on the same skills used. It’s all a pretty well laid out system, and it contains a wide variety of recipes that are completely from scratch. Kids who complete the system will be able to cook – no doubt about it.
Your Kids: Cooking! is a book and dvd that work together to take your kids from complete novices to skilled cooks, and it does so in a way that is easy to follow and not at all intimidating. As a parent, the hardest part will be allowing your kids to tackle hot stoves and sharp knives without interference. However, it is set up to keep kids safe, with instruction on proper use and respect for safe practices. Recipes are broken down into easy to follow pieces, and every aspect of them are covered. The recipes themselves are healthy and delicious, and suggestions for sides to make it a complete healthy meal help give kids do the whole thing on their own. Parents can enjoy both the confidence their kids gain from mastering cooking skills, and the delicious reward of a night off from cooking – definitely a win/win situation.