Nature's Day is a beautiful book and an eye opener for kids and adults alike - helping both to really notice the details around us. It is divided by season and the type of outdoor setting to be discovered - with opportunities for country as well as city exploration. Include Out and About for a great gift set. While the former is more theoretical, the workbook is filled with so many great ideas to get you up from your seat and exploring the outdoors!
This is a classic and a favorite every time we read it in our house. It is a great book to give to new parents looking to build their library of children's books or to the new gardener. It is a story about persistence and determination and of course the joy that comes with growing your own carrot. It would be fun to give with a packet of carrot seeds!
We love this book because it explores the idea of farm to lunch box with fun illustrations and a simple narrative. I like to have the kids pick which food to read about so it can be a 2-3 minute read or a longer read with discussion. The book can also be a foundation for a longer curriculum of exploring where food comes from, and can be read during or after lunch in school. A great gift for a teacher!
I love giving this as a gift because it isn't as well known as other Maurice Sendak books and its illustrations are beautiful and timeless. It can be laugh out loud funny and has the nonsense and deep meaning of a great dream. The food references scattered throughout the story are nostalgic and add great comic detail. It's a perfect gift for 6 - 8 year olds.
I have tried so many different graters with kids including another one from IKEA that I was sure was as good as it would get. This grater lays on its side and has rubber strips making it very stable - and much safer than other graters. The best part is that it grates in both directions, making for quick and easy work and the handy catch basket keeps things neat and tidy.
Parents are always asking us where to buy the mezzaluna that we use in classes. This is the one that we use and like best. We use mezzalunas with children as young as two (with some supervision of course). I always give the simple rule that both hands must on the handles at all times so that there are never any fingers underneath.
Using a mortar and pestle is so handy when you are cooking with kids. It's a great way to bruise herbs for a vinaigrette, mash cooked beans for hummus or crush whole spices for a sensory exploration. Also, there is no reason not to use it outside to see what is inside a berry or a seed pod found during a nature exploration!
We used selections from this book for a recent teacher training. It inspired engaging conversations about our perceptions of what is healthy and how to make better choices in the grocery store. Michael Ruhlman writes in such a readable, funny and relatable way that what might seem like a mundane topic is all of a sudden immensely interesting and thought provoking. If you are looking for some guidance as you think about making choices for yourself or your family, this would be a great start.
Samir Nosrat says in her introduction that she has been writing this book for 15 years - and you sense that in her thoroughness and mastery of the concepts. She breaks down each of the the four elements of cooking - salt, fat, acid and heat - explaining the science and corresponding technique behind each. Everyone from the beginner to the more experienced chef will get something from the joyful and inquisitive approach to her cooking and from the colorful and informative charts and illustrations.
I have recently become very interested in regional cuisine and this cookbook by Matt Jennings could not be more fitting. Jennings manages to capture every memory of my time spent in New England with a fresh and unique spin. His recipes are organized by dairy, ocean, farm, garden and orchard, and forest - further contributing to the well defined sense of place. He also has a section for specialties by state that will be my guide to eating and exploring in the year ahead!
America the Cookbook You might start to see a theme here... This incredibly comprehensive cookbook by Gabrielle Langholtz explores every state's unique cuisine and regional specialties. Each state has an introduction and a menu with recipes by a guest chef or contributor and the rest of the recipes in the book are organized with icons for states or regions represented. With everything from Portuguese Clams to Korean Pancakes, this book has something for everyone. It is one of those books that you want to read like a novel to get the full story of how we eat across our country.
This vegetarian cookbook is perfect for kids aged 10-16. The photographs are stunning, the instructions are easy to follow and the recipes are cute and simple. My eleven year old enjoyed the original ideas and colorful food. It sparked her imagination for cooking ideas with friends and the section on parties was definitely her favorite. The pages that lay out terms to know, abbreviations, and cutting techniques make this a good book for beginning cooks.
Adapted from The Silver Spoon cookbook which is like the bible for Italian cooking, this version for children continues to top my list each year. Every recipe features gorgeous step-by-step illustrations making it perfect for early readers and providing great autonomy for kids in the kitchen. I love that it features familiar dishes like pizza and spaghetti but doesn't shy away from more adventurous ones like roast leg of lamb. This book completely respects kids as eaters and cooks.
This new release by the always wonderful Jacques Pepin is particularly lovely because it captures the joy of intergenerational cooking and the uniquely shared language, knowledge and understanding between a grandfather and his granddaughter. The recipes are fun for kids and grown-ups and, along with the quotes and beautifully illustrated menus, provide a glimpse into their special relationship - the way only food and shared meals can!