A cooking story is more than just something to read, especially in the case of our personalised recipe storybook. As I’ve mentioned before cooking is a fabulous skill to have and here are the reasons why a cooking story is a must-have for any child in the family.
1: Fussy Eaters Have you noticed how food that a child ate yesterday is no longer a favourite the next day? Or a hidden bit of onion chopped into tiny pieces makes it into a mouth, but a piece the size of 5 cents gets rejected? I am sure that we all know of a fussy eater or two. I know I used to HATE onions and refuse to eat them – I would pick them out of every dish. For fussy eaters, sometimes a way to get around this is if they make the item of food themselves. Often the unwillingness to try something comes from stubbornness or just not having tried it before so it is unknown. When a fussy eater cooks something themselves they know exactly what went into it, and they will want to taste their hard work!
2: Healthy Eating It is much easier to eat healthily when you make the food yourself. Just recently I have cut out almost all processed foods from my diet (yep it was hard, that is why I say almost, not all!) I now notice that when I do eat something processed how my body feels, even when it is something that is promoting itself as healthy. (Hint it is usually more tired, like exhausted about an hour after). Healthy eating starts at home and creating your own marvelous food is the best place to build lifetime habits.
3: Time off Devices In this crazy technology-focused world that we live in, having time away from it is important – not just for children! Using a recipe book or cooking story to create something new can be the ultimate brain exercise that you need to switch off and reset. It’s not just that you aren’t looking at a device, but also the touching, playing and blending that comes with cooking, and in my case problem solving – I don’t have x ingredient what is similar to replace it with?
4: Relationship building When you cook with someone else, a friend, a parent, an aunt or a partner it is ALWAYS more fun. The teamwork of doing it together is fun and builds the bond between you. Plus in the end, you have the “we made this moment” when you sit down to enjoy the spoils of your work.
5: Try New Things It is easy to get stuck in a rut, and not get out there and try new things. A new recipe gives the creator a great sense of accomplishment, as they learn new skills and ideas. Once the recipe has baked/cooked there is another try new things moment when you get to taste your creation….. yum!
6. New Habits It is never too late to learn new habits, or so they say. Starting young is really the key. Cooking a creation from scratch is a great time to reinforce healthy eating and healthy habits. If cooking becomes as exciting as visiting McDonalds then why would children want to go to McDonalds? (I know that this is unlikely, the lure of fast food it hard to overcome)
7: Improves Skills With a cooking story, it is not just something to read. Cooking uses maths, science and artistic/creative skills that may not otherwise get used outside the classroom. Reinforcing why maths is important through cooking, suddenly makes a child see that all those pointless exercises in school are leading up to something!
Have I persuaded you? Personally I am a baker, I love creating cakes for friends and family, often they don’t look as good as I hoped, but they ALWAYS taste delicious. Being able to cook is a life skill and one that I think should be encouraged for any child, what do you think?