Priceless Portraits

This is my last post about my cooking class that I hosted last week. I couldn’t resist these beautiful faces and had to share them. Thank you to each child who came and to all the parents that allowed me the opportunity to teach them!  Check out my last 4 posts to see just how much fun we had together!

I am down to just 2 spots left for my second and final week (June 18-21) of cooking class if you or someone you know might be interested. Please leave a comment and I will get back to you.

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These beautiful photos were taken by Estelle Zaret (EZ Photography)

Breakfast at Michele’s – Day 4 of Cooking Class

As part of our week together, I let the kids choose our meal for the final day. I gave them 3 option:

  • BBQ
  • A pasta dish OR
  • Breakfast

They chose breakfast by an overwhelming majority! We scrambled eggs, made whole wheat pancakes, turkey sausage, and grits (the yellow, wholesome kind- not the stripped-clean of nutrients, white kind). Our pure maple syrup was spruced up  with peanut butter (just mix equal parts syrup with peanut butter with a dash of cinnamon and place in the microwave for about 30 seconds until PB is melted).  They had the option of adding in granola and blueberries into their pancakes as well. Allowing the kids to be creative is not only fun for them, they are much more likely to eat what they’ve helped make. After the pancakes were through, they topped them with additional blueberries, granola, and strawberries. This was the favorite meal by far- I know because I asked 🙂 And what did we do when we were finished eating? Our wooden spoon people- very à propos after a week of cooking!

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Publix Field Trip on Day 3 – Plan and Shop

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For Day3, we took a trip to our local Publix. We decided the day before that breakfast would be our final meal to make together. On the menu: eggs, sausage, grits, and pancakes. As we strolled through the store (amid many looks and stares!), we shopped for the breakfast items we needed and discussed the importance of the right ingredients. One of the Publix associates gifted us with hair nets. We all looked fabulous as you can see! A HUGE thank you to Publix for their gracious and patient employees and service- You are the BEST in town! And another thank you to Estelle Zaret for helping out and taking such beautiful pictures! Wish I could have posted them all! Check out her Facebook page to see her talent.

Check out our other Publix shopping trip!

Aloha to Day 2 of Cooking Camp!

For Day 2 of our fun-filled cooking class, we flew into the Pacific and landed on the Hawaiian Islands. Our luau menu consisted of:

  • Grilled Polynesian Chicken – Marinated in pineapple juice and seasoned with salt, pepper, garlic, and ginger

  • Coconut Brown Rice – Brown rice cooked in light coconut milk with some ginger and minced onion

  • Grilled Zucchini and Pineapple – Bite-sized pieces misted with olive oil and grilled in my grill basket

  • Hula Pie- Vanilla Ice Cream* that we allowed to soften, mixed with chopped macadamia nuts, in a graham cracker crust, with a dark chocolate topping

*I used the real thing. I almost went for the frozen yogurt or light ice cream, but the calories were the same per 1/2 cup serving. Yes, there is more fat in the ice cream, but it has all-natural ingredients- no corn syrup, no chemicals. I do love Stonyfield’s Frozen Yogurt but it is a bit pricey and the pie would’ve been a $25 dessert, so I went with the second best option.

Summer Cooking Class – 2 Weeks Available!!

If you live along the Space Coast and are looking for something to keep your kids occupied, I am planning on doing two  camps this summer. Each 4-day camp will be 2 days of cooking, 1 day of meal planning (the kids will choose from one of three menus) and grocery shopping, and the 4th day will be making what they planned and shopped for. The cost will be $50 per student per camp, or $90 for two siblings. The dates are:

Tuesday, May 29th-Friday, June 1

and

Monday, June 18th- Thursday, June 21st

Each day will start at 10:30 and will end at 12:30. This is a hands-on class where they learn cooking and baking techniques, how and why to make healthy food choices, and have the opportunity to enjoy and savor their handiwork! Please let me know ASAP if you are interested. This is first come, first serve.

Click here and here to see some pictures from last summer’s classes.

A Wintery Kids’ Cooking Class – Day 2- AND Summer Camp Dates!

Today, on this coldest day of the season, we created our own enchiladas and ended on a sweet note with our Mexican hot chocolate! The girls had the opportunity to fill their tortillas with a variety of fillings:

  • reduced-fat cream cheese
  • shredded 2% cheese
  • shredded chicken
  • spinach
  • tomatoes
  • black olives
  • black beans
  • corn kernels

I used my chicken verde enchilada recipe as a basis for our lunch today, but since each child is particular about their likes, I gave them the opportunity to be creative with their own enchilada. Giving them a choice is almost a guarantee that they will eat what you serve!

And to add some sweet warmth to this chilly day, we brewed up some Mexican hot chocolate!

When’s the Next Class?

I am planning on doing two  “camps” this summer. Each 4-day camp will be 2 days of cooking like I did yesterday and today, 1 day of meal planning (the kids will choose from one of three menus) and grocery shopping, and the 4th day will be making what they planned and shopped for. The cost will be $50 per student per camp, or $90 for two siblings. Right now, the tentative dates are:

Tuesday, May 29th-Friday, June 1

and

Monday, June 18th- Thursday, June 21st*

Each day will start at 10:00 and will end at noon. This is a hands-on class where they learn cooking and baking techniques, how and why to make healthy food choices, and have the opportunity to enjoy and savor their handiwork!

*Due to my husband traveling 4 weeks out of the summer, these dates are subject to change.

Cooking Class Round 2!

Making the Chicken

We had another successful cooking class today! Here was our menu:

I loved teaching these two classes.  I am looking forward to doing it again next summer on a bit of a grander scale. Maybe a 4 day camp with cooking, meal planning, and grocery shopping…? I love being in the kitchen with kids. Cooking encompasses so many topics- math, science, culture, and art- everything that engages a child’s interest. Thank you to each child and parent for allowing me a brief opportunity to teach your child!

Sour Cream "Lipstick"

Fresh Fruit "Pizza"

A Successful Cooking Class!

Yesterday I hosted a kids’ cooking class at my house. I am not sure who had more fun- me or the 7 girls! We made our own whole wheat pizza dough, they patted out their own individual crusts, and put on the toppings. We made a tomato and carrot balsamic salad to accompany our pizza pies, and, for dessert, I grilled up some peaches and plums and served them with a dollop of cinnamon honey yogurt.

The girls had a great time with all the hands-on involvement that cooking provides. We were able to talk about the ingredients we were using and their benefits. Of course they all got a kick out of learning about fiber- I informed them that fiber keeps you pooping! Lots of laughs from that statement!

Thank you girls for making my day with your smiles, laughter, and gratefulness. You are just as wonderful as your mommies! I am definitely looking forward to doing again next Tuesday!

Summer, Summer, Summertime!

I love summer because I enjoy being able to take the extra time to do special things with the kids. Yesterday, after returning from grocery shopping, we made kabobs for lunch. For some reason, sliding food onto little sticks is very appealing to them! I gave them grilled chicken chunks, 2% American cheese, whole wheat shell pasta, mangoes, and cherry tomatoes, and they stacked their skewers with all these yummy foods!

Later, when Joel was napping, the girls joined in as I did one of the segments on Denise Austin’s Pilates DVD.  This particular segment involves some ballet moves so they were definitely into it!

Then, once Scott got home from work, we went for a swim in our friends’ pool and finished off the evening with grilled Asian pork chops (will post tomorrow), spring rolls, broccoli and red pepper stir fry, and more mango (thanks Laura!!). Needless to say, bedtime was a cinch!

Cooking 101 with FBI Kids

Last night, I had the pleasure of cooking with a group of children at church. (FYI- FBI stands for 1st Baptist Indialantic) Each week this summer, we are incorporating some fun activities to go along with the Bible lessons. I was excited to volunteer to do a cooking night! We talked about Daniel and his decision to not partake of the king’s food and wine. We focused on his wisdom and obedience in making this choice and how God rewarded him.

To go along with our lesson about Daniel, we did a “Create Your Own Pasta” night. I had two different types of pasta- quinoa spaghetti and whole wheat shells. We made pesto and I also brought some tomato sauce. They chose which pasta they wanted, placed it in a zip-top bag, and then poured their choice of sauce into the bag. Next, they had the choice to add chicken, black olives, diced tomatoes, and/or mozzarella cheese chunks. Once they shook it to coat everything, they poured it in a bowl and enjoyed! When you give children the opportunity to be involved in the decision-making and the preparation process, you will find they are willing to try new things.

Emily enjoying her pasta creation!

We finished the evening by making fresh fruit skewers with chocolate. Once again, they were able to choose which fruits to slide onto their skewer (I had pineapple, banana, strawberries, and grapes), and then my mother-in-law helped them drizzle the chocolate over the fruit. To make the chocolate, I placed semisweet chocolate chips in a zip-top bag, placed it in a pitcher of very warm water, and squeezed the chips every few minutes until they were melted. Snip just a small hole at the bottom corner of the bag, and you have an instant “drizzler”!

We had a great night of learning about a dedicated man of God and designing our own pasta and fruit skewers!

Anna awaiting chocolate!

Fruit skewering