Want to give your children some practical kitchen skills and a sense of independence and accomplishment? Play a game of Chopped — for kids.
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The littles love the Food Network TV program, Chopped. They’ve been watching it from time to time ever since we moved back to California five years ago. Though we no longer have cable, they are able to watch it via Amazon Prime Instant Video. Not all seasons are available, but enough that the kids can watch a program whenever there’s TV time.
It’s a running joke at our house to put ME through the Chopped judging system when I “present” a recipe that I’m testing. Everyone takes a turn giving feedback at dinner. You would think that they have a direct line to Ted Allen, Aaron Sanchez, Alex Guarnaschelli, and the other Chopped judges. I know I can breathe a sigh of relief when FishPapa says, “Chef Mama, it looks like you’re going to the next round.” Oy! Everyone’s a critic….
A few months ago we started talking about “playing Chopped” at home. All my kids are very interested in cooking and creating. Some give me no peace about when it’s going to be their turn to get cooking.
About a month ago when the big boys were gone for the day, I set up an at-home game of Chopped. There was actually pretty slim pickings in the kitchen that first time, but I set up four “baskets” with three ingredients each and laid out a limited pantry for them to supplement with and be creative. They had a blast. Oh my! [Continue reading...]