Wednesday, August 18, 2010

I need your help.

Once school begins around here, 4-H is sure to follow. I, again, will be the "Food and Nutrition" Leader, otherwise known as the Cooking Leader in our Club. My aim is to teach kids how to make common food from scratch and then compare the ingredients of that product to the store bought variety. I want them to learn that cooking is fun and can be a more healthful choice. I believe that kids aren't, as a general rule, learning basic things as cooking these days. There are numerous reasons why not, but I want to change that in my own little way. Here are the items I have done in the past:
  • We cooked a chicken, made broth and chicken soup.
  • We roasted a pumpkin, toasted the seeds, prepared the puree and made a Pumpkin Cake.
  • I taught the kids how to boil an egg properly and then made deviled eggs.
  • They learned how to make cocoa mix from scratch and package it into jars to give as gifts.
  • Making Marshmallows from scratch was fun...messy, but fun.
  • I went to a local apple orchard and got fresh apples and taught the kids to make applesauce.
  • Preparing a meal from beginning to end was another "theme". I taught them to make a Brunch Planning Time Line. They then prepared an Apple Strata.
  • They learned that making biscuits from scratch is super easy and even more delicious when they spread the butter they made on top (we also made Chocolate Gravy).
  • Homemade Granola.
  • Homemade smoothies with yogurt and fruit.
The ages of the kids I have range from 9 thru 16 with varying levels of skills and we have about 1 - 1 1/2 hours to cook.
I need your ideas. What would YOU like to learn to cook? When you were just starting out on your own, what did you wish you knew how to make?


feather said...

ok...i definitely have baked goodness on my about homemade whip cream, frosting, and pie crust. bake a cake from scratch and top it with your own frosting. bread, rolls, and even pretzels are so much fun. make your own pizza crust from fresh dough and then add garden vegis.

how's that for ideas?

Farmchick said...

Toll House Cookie Bars - really just the cookie dough spread into a 9x13 pan and baked for about 25 minutes @ 350. Easy and quicker than making individual cookies.

Maybe real Mac-n-Cheese. Cooking the noodles and then adding real cheese instead of powder.

Chili Mac
Calzone (using pilsbury pizza dough for the crust)

*These are ideas from my daughter. She took a cooking class at our local college at their summer program called, "Kids Kollege".

Emie Kay said...

I bet making mashed potatoes would be fun or how about homemade ice cream?

Anonymous said...

How about salsa, using fresh from the garden ingredients? Or homemade chex mix? Or real mac & cheese using a roux sauce?
I think that it's awesome that you're doing this with these kids. It sounds like a huge commitment, but I'm sure that they love it and they are learning valuable skills that unfortunately are a lost art nowadays.

Twisted Fencepost said...

I began teaching my son how to cook this summer. He loves our big Sunday breakfasts, so that was his first request to learn to make....biscuits, gravy, bacon and scrambled eggs.
Thinking breakfast how about french toast or maybe cinnamon toast. Go to PW's sight and look up her post about cinnamon toast. Looks delicious although I haven't tried her way YET.
Another thing he asked to make is one of his favorites...homemade chicken noodle soup. Another is everybody's favorite...homemade pizza!

Anonymous said...

Yeah, Becky - good idea with the pizza!

Kristin said...

Oh! Those sound like some fun 4-H classes! Great ideas! Hope you did ok w/ your babies first solo flight! Btw, your tomato sandwich sounds delish...I would imagine that sweet pickles would add a yummy saltiness to the mix. Happy weekend to ya! Thanks for saying hello today :-)

denice said...

Salads are so healthy when incorporated well but he dressings can be such fat traps and full of preservatives. How about having each kid bring an index card with a recipe for their favorite homemade dressing, then voting on them and choosing the top three. At the next meeting have small mason jars with the ingredients for the top three dressings, plus 3 salads that they can be dressed with. The kids can take home the 3 bottles of dressings plus copies of the top 3 recipes and ideas to share with their families for salads. Goats make great cheese, fruits from the valley make sweet surprises, and nuts make awesome crunch components.