Tuesday, February 23, 2010

Cooking Inspiration (And A Shameful Secret...)

I’m about to admit something I’m not proud of.

When I was in college (and clearly not very smart) and would watch a movie in which the characters smoked a lot (say Next Stop Wonderland), I would then promptly smoke. Usually Parliaments.

Now just forget I admitted that….but there was a point in sharing this shameful secret. The same thing happens to the girlies (minus the gross cigarettes, of course) when they watch shows/movies heavy in cooking. A screening of Ratatouille always sends Audrey tearing through the kitchen drawers for various implements, whipping up a potion, the ingredients too gross to repeat here.

Recently we’ve been on a bit Little Bear kick (my girlies are addicted to that show), and as such, the girls are inspired to recreate all of Mother and Little Bear's various creations – the flying flapjacks, the cupcakes, and most recently, the homemade lemonade (there's an entire episode dedicated to making lemonade.)

We happened to get a dozen lemons in our co-op box last week, which came in handy when, after a Saturday afternoon viewing of said lemonade episode, they declared they wanted to whip up a big batch.

Out came the little juicer we received as a wedding gift a decade ago (and have used approximately three times.) Squeezing the lemons was infinitely thrilling to little Millie... We then added some cold water and sugar in the raw to the lemon juice. Again inspired by Little Bear, Audrey wanted to instead use mint and honey, which as tempting and lovely as it seemed, I nixed, as I couldn’t bear to waste all those lovely lemons if she didn’t like it (and there was a very high probability that she wouldn't...)

It was incredibly tasty and will be a perfect base for homemade popsicles once the weather gets a smidge warmer.

So, What inspires your kiddos to cook?


  1. wow, yum! they are still too little I think to be inspired to cook. I mean, except for me being in the kitchen. Then they always want to help.

  2. My 3 year old is inspired to "cook" whenever I do. Not only does he help when I'm in the kitchen, he often sets up his own area where he makes something on his own. He gets out a ton of pots and pans, and he'll make "banana bread" or "waffles" or whatever, using toys as his "food." It's pretty cool and hopefully good training for later!


  3. my oldest loves to make chocolate chip and banana pancakes, we keep the recipe posted in the kitchen, love those mornings!
    ps...love the lemonade popsicle idea...can't wait for hot weather.

  4. wow how interesting that there is this effect with films and cooking...I dont have any kids, but when I was little I use to love the idea of serving breakfast in bed. So my sister and I would whip up some weird looking pancakes, muffins or whatever we found in our cookbook and make my parents go back to bed so we can serve it to them :)

  5. could you tell me more about your coop when you have time? how do i get involved? what amount of produce? what type of produce? how often? cost? I absolutely love your blogs by the way. my email is allena@smu.edu.

  6. A few years ago when Ratatouille first came out, my best friend's then-six year old son was OBSESSED with "rapatootie." They were coming over for dinner so I made the French Laundry recipe that was the model for the movie. The six-year-old was interested but didn't eat it! But the adults sure loved it and I make it often summer now.

  7. We love Little Bear, too. A relative just gave us several new videos that they are just itching to watch. I wonder if we have that one.

  8. Your post also could have been titled -- "From lemons to lemonade"-- a sweet ending -- your girlies are hands on and they seem to enjoy it

  9. oh i love having fresh lemonade on hand! lovely! :)

  10. When my little sisters were younger we had many many flying flapjack Sundays thanks to Little Bear. My sisters have grown up a bit and their taste in TV shows is a little more questionable (The Real World)...but I'm glad Little Bear is still inspiring little chefs :)

  11. Oh sweet Little Bear. He's long been a favorite in our house. We've had pancakes on many nights for dinner because of Father Bear's flying flapjacks.

    Have your kids watched the Samarai Piemaker Backyardigans? That's a good one too. For playing ninja/samarai's and making some yummy pies.