Considering how few moms cook for their family these days it is refreshing to see a cookbook designed to entice kids to get into cooking. Even better is the fact that this book encourages the use of healthy, unprocessed, food especially vegetables and fruits. Written for kids ages nine to nineteen, Eat Fresh Foods by chef Rozanne Gold, presents a variety of recipes that will teach kids basic cooking skills, give them an appreciation of healthy ingredients, and promote a sense of pleasure in the process of preparing tasty meals.
The eighty recipes are organized into seven groups: breakfast food; soup and pasta; sandwiches, burgers and pizza; salads; dinner special with vegetables; side dishes; and deserts and drinks. Each recipe includes an introduction with information of interest such as why the ingredients are healthy, a list of ingredients, simple step by step instruction and at least one photograph of the finished product. Often there are several photographs showing kids involved in the cooking process and thoroughly enjoying it. Inserts provide additional information on such skills as cooking a hard boiled egg and toasting pecans. Some familiar recipes are given a new (and healthy) twist like Mac and Cheese with Cauliflower and Creamy Red Pepper Sauce that looks like it is oozing with cheese but isn’t. Other recipes are less familiar but still tempting such as Crunchy Wasabi-Lime Salmon with Red Cabbage and Sugar Snaps, and Grape and Pignoli Breakfast Cake. Some recipes are vegetarian like ginger-scallion Brown Rice with Carrot Nibs and a few are vegan. The book concludes with menu suggestions.
Encouraging kids to cook as well as eat healthy foods is a very worthy goal and Eat Fresh Food is a good way to start. Although the recipes are designed to appeal to young people and are adapted to their skill level, many adults will find them tasty and fun to cook. I’m already thinking about making the Chickpea Burger with Fresh mango Salsa, and the Sloppy Slaw with Carrot-Ginger Dressing.
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