Summertime is here! Children are at home and as parents, we try to find activities that will engage our children productively. Learning to cook is a vital skill and one of the best gifts you can give your children. It is also a great way to spend quality time together and they love tasting their own goodies. Cooking with children is a great lesson in working and producing a positive result.
When a the publisher of much of my childhood literature contacted me to review their new cookbook “Kids Cooking Made Easy”, I was thrilled. I knew I would like it. I honestly did not know how much I would love it, though. To find out more about it, you’ll have to read on. But first, the publisher has generously agreed to share with you a sample recipe from the cookbook:
Ice Cream Razzle
4 scoops vanilla ice cream
1 Tbsp milk
2 Tbsp caramel sauce, plus more for the top
½ cup Rice Krispies, plus more for the top
2 Tbsp chocolate chips, plus more for the top
3 chocolate sandwich cookies, crushed
1. Place vanilla ice cream into a food processor and let it defrost slightly, 5-10 minutes.
2. Blend ice cream for 5 seconds. Add milk, caramel sauce, Rice Krispies, chocolate chips, and crushed sandwich cookies. Blend for 2 seconds. Pour into 2 large cups. Freeze for 5-10 minutes.
3. Top razzle with more Rice Krispies and chocolate chips. Drizzle with more caramel sauce. Eat right away.
And now, for the review:
As I mentioned, I was pleasantly surprised. Artscroll is a quality publisher but this time they really outdid themselves. The recipes are child friendly – the authors asked children what they would like to learn to cook when compiling this. They are so simple yet at the same time unique and original. They are organized in an easy-to-find format and are fun to browse through with the quality full color images. The design is pleasant, up to date, and well-done, making the cookbook easier to use. Since the entire theme of the cookbook is ease of use, this is a crucial feature. It also gives background into the making of the cookbook, with a personal blurb accompanying each recipe. I seriously sat and read through it – it was very interesting.
I think this book is as feature-loaded as a cookbook can possibly be. Here are just a few:
1. It lies flat when open, eliminating the need to prop.
2. It starts off with cooking guides – such as onion readiness, and measurement conversions.
3. Fun yet sophisticated icons accompany the cook throughout, with both helpful hints and “cooking school” tips.
4. Each chapter starts off with a helpful “how-to”.
5. Each recipe includes a full color photo.
6. More icons illustrate the exact kitchen tools and methods that will be required.
7. All the recipes are kosher (given they are cooked using all kosher ingredients.) These would fit in with Halal dietary needs as well.
WHAT I LIKED
The recipes are sophisticated enough for those that are already kitchen-savvy, yet explained in a way anyone can follow. The graphics and photos make it fun to browse through. They leave out the guesswork that a novice may be afraid to try, and explain everything thoroughly. As I mentioned above, it lies flat without the need for propping. Each recipe is a cooking lesson in its own right, covering different topics and techniques. It’s almost like culinary school – except that it costs only $15.99. Cookbooks can be pricey, and I feel as though the price point is very reasonable for a full-featured color cookbook.
WHAT I DIDN’T LIKE
Honestly, this is a tough one. I do feel as though the title “Kids Cooking” may be slightly deterring to older children, for whom this cookbook is perfect as well. The design, however, which seems to be targeted toward teens, might make up for this. The denim feel and the trendy font shouts out toward that age group.
WHO IT’S GREAT FOR
*I highly recommend this primarily for parents who want to encourage their teens and tweens to try their hand in the kitchen.
*This is also a great guide for parents who want to teach younger children to cook one on one.
*Newly weds, college freshmen, or others who have little kitchen experience and are starting to cook more.
* Moms looking to feed children who may be picky eaters
I’ve found this to be a very versatile cookbook and great for anyone to use. Those listed above can especially benefit from such a publication, although I feel as though anyone would enjoy going through it.
FINAL SCORE: *****
I am impressed with this cookbook which manages to maintain a balance of both targeted and universal audiences. It is durable, easy to use, and pleasant to read through. I’d give it five stars in an online review any day.
Buy it here!
Disclaimer: I received a free sample of the product to facilitate this honest review. I received no other compensation. All opinions are 100% my own and not influenced in any way. I have rejected in the past products I did not believe were appropriate and would only review a product I personally endorse.