Kids in the kitchen with their parents can be the best time to create memories. Picture: Supplied
Kids in the kitchen with their parents can be the best time to create memories. Picture: Supplied

Want to get the kids involved in the kitchen? Start small

By IOL Supplied Time of article published Apr 20, 2020

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The national Lockdown has left us all responsible for filling the tummies in our homes with tasty and nutritious meals every day, not to mention satisfying those sneaky cravings for a baked goodie or a last attempt at a refreshing dessert before we go into winter. 

Having to cook three times a day is no small task and it leaves us all wondering what to prepare next all while having to still get through our work. 

How did our mothers and grandmothers do it?

Easy, they had the skill set, the recipe book to back them as well as no other option but to get it done. 

Before the days of fast food, microwave dinners and pre-mixes the truth was that if it wasn’t homemade you didn’t get to eat it. While we feel a bit out of our comfort zone without our daily food options, we are still lucky in the sense that we have the means to make use of disposable tart, roast and freezer dishes, easily available cling wrap, foil, wax wrap, baking paper and cases. All these will aid you in your journey to MasterChef worthy dishes. 

The thought of not having to soak and wash dirty oven and tart dishes is enough to motivate most of us to try out the family recipes. Traditional recipes and your mother’s secret Bobotie recipe is just what the doctor ordered when you are missing your loved ones and you want to provide some comfort food for your family during this time. 

Now is also the ideal time to involve the kids, this is a good way to keep the kids entertained and to make some memories (and hopefully some tasty meals and treats). 

Yumna Ahmed, Marketing Manager at Twinsaver says “family time is a great time to cook together. You teach kids valuable skills, while also sharing and making memories together - cooking and baking is a worthy endeavour.”

“Starting your children early with cooking and baking can entrench positive habits for life as well as promote their confidence and independence.  Yes, it might cause a mess, but it keeps them occupied,” adds Ahmed. 

For their first few ventures in the kitchen, start by building up their stamina and skills by getting them used to simple recipes with the below four tips and tricks:

Start small: don’t try tackle a long recipe, start off by making a salad, a sandwich, boiled eggs and toast, let them sugar and roll the pancakes – quick and easy

Manage the inevitable mess: keep your kitchen from looking like a tornado went through it, without spoiling the fun your junior chefs – strategise around cracking eggs, designate areas to blend, sprinkle 100s and 1000s and wash up as you go, having a mixing bowl with handles will also offer better control for those tiny hands

Create traditions: beyond baking cookies during the holidays, find out what fun rituals you could start with your kids when they’re still young. Start baking fresh cup-cakes and cakes for birthdays, Sunday Roast and a tasty apple pie for dessert. Ask them which days in the year they enjoy the most

Encourage independence: by the time kids are five or six years old, they’re ready to master a simple recipe such as making a fruit and cinnamon smoothie or three-ingredient pancakes. The little ones can also help with the icing of cakes, mixing and blending (under mom’s supervision), breaking biscuits for fudge and with most steps of a fridge tart

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