Friday, March 20, 2015

March Break Kids Cooking Class at My Place...

I have been planning a hands-on cooking class with my twins' old classmates from their previous school for the March break. Kept it small for the first time hosting such a session at my place, although I had invited a few more, but it turned out fantastic with two guests! My youngest one was well-behaved through it all which I worried about for not being able to participate as much. He was fine just observing for the most part :) On the lunch menu: breaded chicken strips to serve in tortilla wraps, lemony dill yogurt dip, a smoothie and cookies for a mid-day snack.

One of the key things I wanted the kids to experience was how to use their five senses to examine and taste what's in front of them, such as herbs and vegetables for the dip. Then together, we could customize what they would like to put in it and serve as dippers.

The kids were able to identify two of the four herbs I presented. They were more than willing to smell and give each a taste. Looks like fresh dill and chives were winning ingredients for the yogurt dip! I asked them how to describe the smells and taste of the herbs, "grassy" for dill, "good" for mint, "oniony" for chives, but the overall comment was "fresh"! Indeed they are.. I like that!

Taking a whiff of a sprig of fresh peppermint! 

Snap peas were seen new as dippers and they gave it a try! Now they know why they are called "snap" peas by the sound when you break or snap one. They were generally keen veggie eaters with different favourites!

Lemony dill yogurt dip with an assortment of vegetables. 

Onto breaded chicken strips... first zesting a whole lemon to use in the breadcrumb coating mixture.

Such a pro!

Next up, breading station... one plate filled with the lemony dill yogurt to marinate the chicken fillets I already seasoned with salt and pepper, and into another plate with breadcrumbs mixed with lemon zest to coat. I loved seeing the kids work in teams.

Disposable plastic gloves makes it sanitary when children work with raw meat!

Laying the breaded chicken fillets on a slightly greased baking tray with olive oil. Giving the chicken a quick spray of cooking oil before popping it in the oven at 375F for 15 to 20 minutes until cooked through. 

The breaded chicken came out golden and aromatic! Lunch is ready to be served! 

I encouraged the kids to try one of my favourite summer wraps, tortilla wrapped in spinach leaves, chicken, mango slices and coloured bell pepper strips with a helping of the yogurt dip for sauce. One of my sons' gave it a go while the rest preferred a plain chicken wrap with the dip as sauce.

Worked up an appetite- enjoying the fruits of their fun-filled labour...

After lunch and a round of strawberry-banana-nectarine-mango-pear smoothie, a few hours later we were ready for some good ol' fashion cookie baking!! I really love the Big-Batch Kris Kringle Cookies I made over the holidays as a cookie base to customize their own add-ins. The yield was perfect as I wanted to send cookies to our guests' home so they can share with their families what they baked, although they made them slightly bigger we still ended up with 30! Divided the batter into two for the kids to work in teams to create their own cookie!

I am always thrilled to see kids get hands-on in the kitchen! 

Taking turns smashing pecans in a ziplock bag with a mallet!

Team Green chooses the works: chocolate chips, cranberries, pecans and marshmallows.

Team White and Green chooses simply chocolate and marshmallows.

One base, two different cookies!

Voila- yummy! The cookies looked holely due to the marshmallows melting into the cookie creating craters, and caramelizing into bits around the edges while giving the cookie a chewy texture. If you like marshmallows and chocolate, give my S'mores Cookie Crisps a try.

Packing cookies for the kids to take home...

Enjoying a bit of Wii gaming, homemade cookies and bonding time... can't get better than that!

Organizing a hands-on cooking class for your family can be a lot of fun and a chance to whip up something new together! Invite a few family members or friends over to make it even merrier! You can have the kids take part in some element in the preparation process, or just assembling at the table to create their own meal... whatever it is, the greater chance they will eat it when they have taken part in making it. Here are some DIY Kids Can Cook themes that worked successfully with mine. Pizza Mania, Chicken Fajitas, Tacos, Korean BBQ, Chinese Hot Potting

1 comment:

  1. That is great dear; I do not know cooking either and that is why I think I should also take online cooking classes that can help me to learn new things and develop my interest in cooking.