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Cash is under threat across our planet.
Card schemes hate cash, as they can only wring profit from their debt-creating plastic products.
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One of the very best (and worst) things about your children getting older and more independent is reaching that point where they want to be involved in the kitchen. This enthusiasm should be harnessed from an early age, and if it is, it will develop into lifelong skills that will ensure they are well on the road to self sufficiency long before you drop them off at University for the first time with a pot noodle and a microwave as their only source of sustenance.
A good friend of mine has been blogging about cooking with his son since he was 2 years old. Not only does his boy know more than the average 10 year old about the workings of a kitchen, he also has a brilliant attitude to food in general and a wonderfully strong bond with his daddy –such is the power of this type of collaborative activity.
I try and encourage my children to help out in the kitchen. They are responsible for choosing what goes on the weekly menu and then making sure we shop to get the right ingredients in. We cook a lot of meals from simple store cupboard items and it’s important to me that they learn the basics of how simple meals can be created with ease. The bonus that we gain from this is that it’s so often cheaper to cook your own food from scratch and you have the piece of mind of knowing that it’s all freshly made using only the ingredients that you choose to put into it.
Here are my top tips for getting your kids involved in the kitchen:
1. Plan a menu – get out all of your recipe books and spend an hour letting the children go through them and plan a menu. They’ll be more inclined to want to make and eat food that they’ve chosen
2. Give them simple tasks, eg peel a carrot or a potato with a safety peeler – don’t worry too much about how much of the vegetable they peel away!
3. Make time for them – when you’re rushing to prepare a meal against the clock is not always the best time to ask them to help. Make it easy on yourself
4. Create a happy kitchen atmosphere – take photos of your children preparing food and keep them in the kitchen. It’s an often advised route to helping children with food anxiety
5. Clear up! Make it part of the process to clear up afterwards. Again it takes longer but it instills a good sense of responsibility that ‘might’ extend to other areas of the house.
But most importantly of all? Have fun!
Tuesday, 19th April 2011