Buy a child a meal and she will eat for a day. Teach a child to cook and she will never go hungry. Ok, so I’m paraphrasing here, but you get the idea.
From the time my children were young, I had them help out in the kitchen. They would fetch ingredients or utensils, etc. As they grew, I started sharing what I was doing to make a certain dish or treat. I showed them how to make simple dinners before they were allowed to turn on the oven! This has served us all well.
Child #1 likes to experiment with Asian and Asian-fusion recipes. She made a delicious pork lo mein just last Wednesday. It was a fantastic Asian-American fusion dish that had us all heading back for seconds! Yummy! She learned to cook at a young age, and pretty quickly after she learned how to read, started making her own experiments with food. She has an innate sense of what pairs well together and her meals reflect that.
Child #2 also cooks well, but specializes more in American and Tex-Mex dishes. Her chili is wonderful and flavorful, without being too spicy. She is my jalapeno child, so that is a stretch for her!
Child #3 is my special needs kiddo and he struggles with making meals. If it’s something he’s made before that is not too complicated, he can really excel. However, if it’s more difficult or a new recipe watch out for sharp flying utensils!
Child #4 also has some learning disabilities and needs to make things with which she is familiar or are written down in an orderly fashion. There are no variations for children #’s 3 and 4! They can do simple cooking, for which I am grateful, but I would like them to stretch a little. They will, however, never starve and isn’t that the point?
So, though it can be frustrating to have a little one or an inexperienced one under foot, the eventual results are worth it! They will never starve and neither will you!