It’s amazing how many of today’s youth don’t know how to do a simple task, such as boil an egg or cook dinner for themselves (other than cereal).
Because of different schedules and tastes, my family and I often made our own dinners growing up. I’d say that I was a pretty self-sufficient teenager, so I had no problem cooking for myself. I enjoyed it.
As my diet became healthier and healthier, I had to teach myself new techniques and recipes. The more I cook, the more I enjoy it, and the better I get.
While I am mainly self-taught, I owe my mom a good deal of credit for unknowingly teaching me basic kitchen skills, and instilling in me a passion for food. I have very fond memories of helping her make cakes and licking the batter out of the bowl.
Now as an adult, you will often find me busy in the kitchen. When I buckle Maddy into her high chair, I get right to work peeling, chopping, stirring, etc. I often get lost in my own world, not realizing that Maddy is studying what I’m doing.
It occurred to me today that while Maddy is sitting in her chair watching me, I’m actually giving her her first cooking lessons.
Thinking about it in this way gave me much joy. I take comfort in knowing that Maddy is absorbing what I’m doing, and no doubt learning as she watches.
This afternoon I scooped her up into my arms and let her help me pour olive oil into a pan, and showed her how garlic is peeled. She loved helping me, and I loved that she was getting first-hand experience at such a young age.
No matter where you come from, how old you are, how rich or poor you are, being able to put ingredients together and be able to rely on yourself for a meal is an indispensable skill to have, and that’s why you should let your children help you in the kitchen as much as possible.
Think of it as an investment in their future.