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Old 10-18-2009, 11:38 AM   #11
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I began at age six under my mother's supervision while I was in Scouts and earned a merit badge. My kids also began about that age, and so did my grandsons. I began with teaching them to cook the breakfast menu they liked the most. This was great motivation for them... fixing food that THEY wanted! We practiced kitchen basics and cleaning up afterward. Working together and making it fun, they learned very quickly, and in no time they were baking and preparing dinner meals with only an oversite of supervision. It was a wonderful time!
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Old 10-19-2009, 06:48 AM   #12
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my daughter now 30 was always in the kitchen till she got to teenyears and then mostly interested in the finish product. Her sons (9yrs -6 and 2yr old) however love to be in grama's kitchen. They have their own aprons, cookbook which when we try something we make a copy for their cookbook and then when they come down they get their cook book out. Even the 2 yrs old get involved. First lesson Patiences. Its going to be messing and product may not come out looking the greatest. But thats not important. I think it is great, the oldest now 9 learned fractions measuring out items. I purchased some sturdy plastic knives so they could learn knife skills. Cutting up minor things, we are still working on that. He's a lefty grama a righty and sometimes it make it lil tough. We have alot of fun in the kitchen, we made ice cream, what a riot that night, lil one 2yrs sat on the table watching it churn and goin mmmm mmmm for 20 min let me just say, it never got to the bowl the 3 of them had spoons in hand the minute the machine stopped, they dug in and had a ball.
so whatever the age if they want to help let them. Let the feel they are helping and they are also learn. Also They love the clean up as long as it involves a sink of bubbles everything will get washed. Never a dull moment but lots of memories.
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Old 10-20-2009, 07:12 PM   #13
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I started involving my three boys as soon as they could see over the counter even up on chairs, mixing, cracking eggs, cutting things up, measuring, finding and following recipes.
I remember one time, I was watching my friends three girls and my three boys, they assembled shishkabobs of meat, peppers, onions and pineapple for the grill, it was a great time.
The two oldest live together on their own and they requested my recipes so I wrote them a recipe book of our traditional home cooking recipes.
Once in a while they call to ask how I do something.
My youngest 18 spent much time in the kitchen most nights, because we cook almost everything from scratch. This week-end we made 5 gallons of saurkraut. We're going to make a few gallons of red kimchi yet this week.
When I got home from work, there were two loaves of sweet fruit nut breads he made--quick breads. (He'll make a good wife--just kidding.)
It's a family activity--cooking together--and it's part of being a family to make short work of our meals.
On week-ends lately, he's been making fried cubed potatoes, and eggs and some sausage or bacon. I am so glad to have kids that like to cook and can do it well.
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Old 10-21-2009, 03:30 AM   #14
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family

Its good to let the kids help out especially in the kitchen...i remember my mom used to give ma a spoon and bowl so i could mix some ingredients she needs whenever she cooks..now I let my nieces and nephew take turns in mixing something whenever they come over...Also, by doing some kid-friendly recipes like pizza, sandwiches, cakes, ice cream they can help out in the preparation or decorating the food,
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Old 10-21-2009, 05:53 AM   #15
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I definately agree - let them start participating as soon as they are ready.

Im a lot older than my younger siblings and had most of them in the kitchen helping me from like 3 or 4 onwards! Now the youngest of them is 5 and she is always helping me in th4e kitchen - she likes getting things for me and stirring etc the more I let her do the better she feels :)
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Old 10-21-2009, 11:05 AM   #16
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I agree with you. My mother isn't much of a cook but my dad is. However he didn't like anyone stiring his broth (and the odd this is I am the same way now) but I used to watch him do his thing and I too like mixing bunch of stuff without any recipe...just making it up as I go along...
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Old 10-21-2009, 01:21 PM   #17
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I'd say as soon as possible. I was three when I started out cutting out Christmas cookies, while standing on a stool. I've always loved cooking. My sister didn't come into the kitchen much at all as a child, and finally as a Sr. she loves cooking, but it took a long time.

I notice with my nephews and nieces that the ones who are encouraged early have all developed an interest in cooking.

I don't remember when I started handling knives, or the oven, but there are so many tasks children can do in the kitchen without getting close to knives or ovens.... peeling carrots, potatoes, etc. When I was little, there were many more scratch jobs (like shelling peas) than there are now.
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Old 10-21-2009, 08:17 PM   #18
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I never really helped in the kitchen as a child, my mother is incredibly fast and she cannot stand slowdowns.

My kids are not very eager to help, unless I’m making pancakes which they all love.
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Old 10-21-2009, 08:23 PM   #19
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My kids always want to help but I am like pastaprincess' Dad, I have a hard time allowing people to "mess about" in my cooking. BUT, because I want to encourage their getting used to doing their own kitchen visiting, I have started laying things out for them to start dinner while I am commuting home. They enjoy it and get to say they helped. They have lost their childlike fear of the stove and have gained the adult respect it deserves.

I do so love to hear "I hate touching raw meat" as it makes me laugh.
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Old 10-21-2009, 08:28 PM   #20
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The girls were always helping me, specially the youngest one, and I believe because of this they can cook a lot of things by themselves.
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