Food for Talk

All Foodies love talking about food as well as eating!  I could spend hours discussing favourite meals and analysing menus in restaurants.  We probably don’t realise how much time we spend thinking and talking about food on a daily basis, but being an essential part of every day, we think and talk about it an awful lot!  This idea got me thinking about how much language is involved in cooking and how much children benefit from this.  When you cook with kids, they are being exposed to a huge amount of new vocabulary – from naming new ingredients and equipment, to using a really wide range of verbs, many of which they may not hear out of a cooking context, e.g. mash, beat, whisk, are fairly specific to cooking.

Vocabulary aside, cooking also encourages children to discuss and explain their own tastes and preferences for food – they use describing words to talk about the taste, smell and texture of  food and they learn to give reasons for their opinions.  In our classes, we often ask children to explain why we are doing something, for example, ‘why are we holding the butter in our hands?’.  Many of children can now offer an explanation for this – ‘because it will make the butter melt’.  We are so proud when they start making these links and explaining them!



Getting inspired!

One of our favourite parts of running Fun Little Foodies is being creative and thinking of recipes that we know our Little Foodies and their accompanying adults will enjoy!  We spend a lot of time finding, changing and sometimes creating recipes and then thinking of great stories and activities which will link with these recipes.  Lots of people ask us where we get our recipes from and the answer is ‘lots of places!’ – the internet, recipe books and sometimes we just make them up!  However, the book which was our first ‘go to’ book for cooking with our own children, before Fun Little Foodies even started, was the Tickle Fingers Cookbook.

Katie’s little boy was bought this book by his Uncle and Auntie for Christmas when he was two and immediately, we found and tried out so many recipes which we knew children could enjoy cooking as well as eating!  This book really did inspire us to cook more with our own kids which then led to the idea that we could cook with other people’s kids too!  Annabel Woolmer, the author of Tickle Fingers is a huge advocate of cooking with toddlers and we recommend this recipe book to all our Little Foodie families!

We are now having a little go at putting together our own mini recipe book which will include around 20 of our favourite recipes from our first year of foodies and photos of our fantastic little foodies having fun in our classes this year.

If you have any great recipes or recipe books that you recommend we would love to hear about them!


Recipe of the Month

Our Recipe of the Month for May is our fabulous ‘Cheese and Tomato Moons’.  These were a real hit with our little Foodies and we had great fun making cheese and cracker rockets while they were cooking to complete our space theme for the session!  The best thing about this recipe is making your own pastry!  We then filled our moons with tomato puree, cherry tomatoes and cheddar cheese.  You could use any filling you like and you can use the pastry recipe to make all sorts of pies and pasties.

Our cheese and cracker rockets are a really fun way to get children trying different types of cheese – we used feta for the windows and Red Leicester, Edam and Gouda for the rocket nose and wings.  It is also a good opportunity to talk about different shapes and even introduce mathematical language such as half and quarter to young children.  If you would like a copy of this recipe please comment below……. 5, 4, 3, 2,1, BLAST OFF!!