It started out innocently enough. I’ve been allowing the kids to choose one recipe a week that they are in charge of cooking, while I am the “helper”. This morning my daughter made a delicious shredded apple-honey-yogurt with toasted almonds breakfast. It was so good I wanted more after I was done.
We had the prospect of a full day ahead of us, since our camping trip was cancelled (while folks in the rest of the world are halfway to boiling to death, Alberta weather has decided to bring a little taste of autumn – cool with rain). What better way to start an empty day than with baking? We started by making lemon blueberry scones (from Bonnie Stern’s “Essentials of Home Cooking” – LOVE this book). I messed it up a bit by adding the milk that was supposed to go on TOP of the scones TO the scones, but at least added some flour to the batter to make up for it. They tasted good, anyway.
After poring over our kids’ cookbooks, my son (5 years old) chose a recipe for brown sugar shortbread.
Once those were in the oven, the kids started writing their own recipes. “Can we try them today? Please?!” Normally, I would have said no, since we had already been baking for at least an hour, and I don’t like having more than one extra cook in the kitchen, and I am a bit of an uptight parent at times, and I didn’t want to wash more dishes, and I am a perfectionist, and even though I want my kids to develop confidence and experience in the kitchen, I have a hard time letting go of how things “should” turn out. Well, this time I took a breath and said, “Sure.” After all, if they are using their own recipes, I am not attached to how it should turn out, and we weren’t counting on these things to be our meal.
My son wrote a (sort of) cake recipe (dictated to his sister, actually) that fairly resembled a real recipe. It seemed like it could actually work. His sister helped him to make it. One of my daughters made a drink resembling hot cocoa, and the other made some weird concoction that was disgusting in both look and taste. “What should I do if even I don’t like it?” she asked. Dump.
After all the baking, we made a buffet lunch. The kids are enamored with buffets after eating at one every day for 5 days straight. Let’s see; we had, pb&j wraps, sweet pickles, cheesy crackers, gouda, havarti, strawberries, snap peas, edamame salad, nori, stewed rhubarb and carrots. I’m telling you, I have no interest in anything that has to do with cooking, baking, cutting, washing, eating, or just being in the kitchen. For now.
I think we’ll order pizza for dinner.