Bunny Salad Idea for Easter

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PearPhoto Bunny Salad Idea for Easter

A pear (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Here is an idea for a bunny salad kids will love to create. Children enjoy working with food, especially if provided with encouragement and inspiration. Carrying out the bunny theme with food is not difficult and they will be pleased with their results.

Bunny Salad

1 fresh pear cut in half, remove seeds and stem
or use canned pear halves
Raisins
Red cherries, candied or maraschino
Shredded cheese
Marshmallows
Lettuce

Prepare fresh pear or drain juice from canned pears.
Wash lettuce and put a lettuce leaf on individual plate.

To make bunny:

Place pear halve face down on lettuce leaf.

Put 2 raisins on the pear for the eyes.

Use a red cherry for the nose.

Put several pieces of shredded cheese on each side of face for whiskers.

Cut two marshmallows in half and use for ears of bunny.

Add a marshmallow for the bunny’s tail.

There you have it – one sweet bunny. These salads multiply well for any number of guests. Recipe taken from Amy Houts first book in the Food and Fun series, Cooking Around the Calendar With Kids: Holiday and Seasonal Food and Fun. See more at Cooking/Calendar.

To your childrens’ creativity,

Lee Jackson
Nutrition advocate and author

http://healthykidseatingtips.com

 Bunny Salad Idea for Easter
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Childrens Cookbook Takes Kids Through the Seasons of the Year

PinExt Childrens Cookbook Takes Kids Through the Seasons of the Year

You already know the importance of cooking with children – how much worthwhile information they gain from working in the kitchen. And why they need to be exposed to this skill at an early age.

Amy Houts, who has been a preschool teacher, now has a cookbook on cooking with children through the four seasons. Best of all, this hardcover childrens cookbook is incredibly priced. There is a special this week only for $16.95 when purchased through our website. This is a reduction from the regular price of $24.95 for this quality hardcover book. Amy said she wants every child to be able to cook with the seasons and sense the different rhythms of life.

http://ImagesUnlimitedPub.com

Cooking Around the Calendar with Kids – Holiday and Seasonal Food and Fun helps children enjoy the unique feeling and taste of each season. Now with the spring season knocking on our door, you will find many recipes for lighter and more colorful foods.

In the “Spring” section, there are recipes for foods using fresh strawberries, cool fruit parfaits, St. Patrick‘s Soda Bread, Spinach Power, Spring Flower Cake, Mexican fiesta food and other. There are over 200 kid-friendly recipes, many with a focus on different holidays and celebrations, but appropriate for any day of the year.

http://ImagesUnlimitedPub.com

Take a look and see if this is what you need to encourage your child to work in the kitchen and learn new skills.

To your health and that of your family’s,

Lee Jackson
Child nutrition advocate

 Childrens Cookbook Takes Kids Through the Seasons of the Year
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Veggie Recipe for Kids

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300px Cherry Tomatoes in Pack Veggie Recipe for Kids

Image via Wikipedia

Vegetables have received a bad rap when it comes to being accepted by kids. But what other food is as colorful and as varied in taste and texture as vegetables? As parents we need to get across to kids that vegetables are really a most interesting and colorful food.

The way vegetables are presented and talked about in the family makes a real difference. If big brother or sister says that some food is yucky, then chances are, that is what the younger child believes. It’s amazing what lasting effect words can have on children. Then there are the positive words you can use as well: It will make you grow big and strong. It will make your hair shine. It will give you rosy cheeks. What a difference words can make!

Here is a recipe from the childrens cookbook, Cooking Around the Calendar with Kids – Holiday and Seasonal Food and Fun by Amy Houts, that shows kids just how good and juicy and fun vegetables can be – if you believe tomatoes are a vegetable, otherwise, go with the fruit definition. Botanically, a tomato is a fruit; however, it has a much lower sugar content than other fruits, and is therefore not as sweet. It is considered a vegetable for most culinary purposes.

Cherry Tomatoes with Dip

Cherry tomatoes

Dip:
1/2 cup plain yogurt
1/2 cup mayonnaise
1 teaspoon dried minced onion
1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
1 teaspoon celery seed
1 teaspoon seasoning salt

Combine all ingredients for dip in a bowl. Mix until smooth. Cover bowl and refrigerate for several hours or overnight.

When ready to eat, wash tomatoes and cut in half. Stick a toothpick into the tomato. Give each child a small container of dip.

You can also use carrot and celery sticks, cauliflower or broccoli, or other vegetable with this dip. If children are very young, you will need to cook the vegetable a short time to soften them slightly.

Let’s keep them healthy,

Lee Jackson
Child nutrition advocate, author
http://www.healthykidseatingtips.com

 Veggie Recipe for Kids
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Book Special Ends in Nine Days

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09306431432 227x300 Book Special Ends in Nine DaysLast few days for the January Special on the book Cooking Around the Calendar With Kids – Holiday and Seasonal Food and Fun. You know, this is the book that helps your kids with their “what should I cook?” episodes, all year long. This hardcover book usually sells for $24.95 but now through the end of January you can get it for $16.95 plus free shipping.

Yes, it is a real book, something you can hold in your hand. Personally, I still like that concept.

The author of the book, Amy Houts, has lots of suggestions for this time of year, including Valentine’s Day, President’s Day, St. Patrick’s Day, and many more. Just go here for your January Special. Save yourself money by getting it now – and help get your kids excited about cooking again.

Lee Jackson
Food and Family Living

 Book Special Ends in Nine Days
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5 Holiday Food and Fun Ideas for Children

PinExt 5 Holiday Food and Fun Ideas for Children

Help create happy memories for children by involving them in holiday activities.

Here are 5 ideas from Amy Houts’ book, Cooking Around the Calendar with Kids: Holiday and Seasonal Food and Fun, that can be the start of fun family traditions.

1. Memories and baking cookies are a big part of the holiday season. Get friends together and have a cookie baking or exchange party.

2. Children can help create simple holiday gifts from the kitchen, such as Chocolate Chip Cookies in a Jar, Holiday Spice Mix, and Hearty Soup Mix.

3. As a way to recall the many blessings received during the year, place five or more kernels of candy corn in a zip lock bag and give to each child. Decide together what blessing each kernel symbolizes.

4. Check out a cookbook from the library with recipes typical of those used by your ancestors. Make a traditional cookie or bread recipe from that country.

5. Take time to remember the birds. A gift for them, or to a bird lover, could be a pinecone bird feeder you and your child create. Don’t forget to give the birds water, too.

Journalists, newsletter publishers, bloggers and others: You may reprint this blog or any of the blogs as long as you include the website: http://www.cookingandkids.com/blog.

 5 Holiday Food and Fun Ideas for Children
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Baking with Kids – Fun Cookie Recipe

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Image by janielianne via Flickr

Cooking with kids can be fun and create memories for years to come. Remember when the kids kept snatching cookie dough from the refrigerator? You finally had to put a toothpick in the dough with a note that said to not even think about eating it.

Here is a cookie recipe that will be tempting, either in the dough form (which they shouldn’t eat) and in the baked form (which will be hard to resist).

This recipe lists red food coloring as an ingredient. You may want to avoid using artificial food coloring by using natural products. You can  purée or juice a beet to get a very effective red dye. Mix a drop of this juice into the dough to make it pink or add a little more for red. Just keep your fingers protected unless you want red fingers for the next few days. You can also use a little pomegranate juice.

This cookie recipe comes from the childrens cookbook, Cooking Around the Calendar with Kids – Holiday and Seasonal Food and Fun by Amy Houts.

Holiday Candy Cane Cookies

1/2 cup butter, softened
1/2 cup shortening
1 cup confectioners’ sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla
1 1/2 teaspoons almond extract
1 egg
2 1/2 cups flour
1 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon red food coloring
1/4 crushed peppermint candy
1/4 cup granulated sugar

Preheat oven to 375 degrees F. Children can help measure butter, shortening, confectioners’ sugar, vanilla, almond extract, and crack egg into large mixing bowl. Children can mix with large wooden spoon or adult can beat with electric mixer until well mixed.

Note: there is no baking powder in this recipe.
Stir in flour and salt. Divide dough in half. Add red food coloring (or alternative)  to one half of dough. Pinch off about a teaspoon of red dough. Children can shape into about a 4-inch rope by rolling back and forth on lightly floured board or cloth. Repeat with plain dough. Set side-by-side and twist together. Place on ungreased baking sheet, curving one end down to form handle of cane.

Repeat process, placing candy canes about 2-inches apart on baking sheet. Bake for 9 minutes, until very light brown. Meanwhile, mix peppermint candy and sugar. Sprinkle on cookies right when they come out of the oven. Then remove to cooling rack.

Yield: about 4 dozen cookies

Happy baking!

 Baking with Kids   Fun Cookie Recipe
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Get Kids in the Kitchen This Holiday

PinExt Get Kids in the Kitchen This Holiday
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Image by Sifu Renka via Flickr

Are you saying, “but it takes too long to work with my kids in the kitchen”, or “it’s too messy when they help me”? In her book, Cooking Around the Calendar with Kids: Holiday and Seasonal Food and Fun, Amy Houts says that with a little planning and imagination, you can make holiday baking stress-free and enjoyable. The part children will remember is that they were able to “help” you in the kitchen.

Some points to remember when working with children:

  • Read through the recipe completely from top to bottom. Talk about the recipe. Explain what you will do and what the child will do. Know what needs to be done first, second, and so on.
  • Emphasize hand washing. Be a role model for your child. Practice food safety.
  • Collect all of the ingredients and tools that you need before you begin.
  • Measure everything carefully.
  • Clean up as you go.

Using this strategy, will help make cookie baking or any food work much more pleasant and enjoyable.

To your cooking enjoyment,

Lee Jackson, food writer

 Get Kids in the Kitchen This Holiday
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Enjoy the 4th of July with a Refreshing Treat Kids Can Make

PinExt Enjoy the 4th of July with a Refreshing Treat Kids Can Make
5061049945 3a185fc6ea m Enjoy the 4th of July with a Refreshing Treat Kids Can Make

Image by jnn1776 via Flickr

Here is a page from Amy Houts’s childrens cookbook: Cooking Around the Calendar With Kids: Holiday and Seasonal Food and Fun. For this and many other food and family fun ideas buy this cookbook and enjoy cooking with kids throughout the year.You can find this cookbook by Amy and other cookbooks at  Images Unlimited Publishing website: http://www.imagesunlimitedpub.com.

Amy writes: “Families all across America gather on July fourth to celebrate freedom. Bands march and drums beat. It’s a time for picnics and fireworks. For an Independence Day celebration, plan to serve a refreshing frozen treat. This will help you and your child cool down and supply extra water the body needs in hot weather.

Here is her “right-for-summer” treat:

Ruby Fruit Cups

Try this sugar-free, frozen treat this Fourth of July

1 quart fresh strawberries or
1 (16-oz) package individually frozen strawberries
1 fresh pineapple or
1 (20 oz.) can unsweetened, crushed pineapple
2 bananas
1 lemon
1 (6-oz.) can frozen, unsweetened
orange juice concentrate
1 cup cranapple juice
1 cup water

First, children can help prepare fruit. Rinse, stem and place
strawberries in a large bowl. For frozen strawberries, do not
thaw.

If you are using fresh pineapple, adults need to slice off
tough, outer skin and crown. Then cut the pineapple in half,
lengthwise. Remove the core and discard. Dice pineapple into
1/2 inch cubes. For canned pineapple, add to the bowl; do not
drain. Children can peel and slice the bananas. Add to the
bowl.

Half the lemon. Stick a fork in one half of the lemon, and
hold it over a separate, smaller bowl. Move the fork up and
down while squeezing the lemon to release the juice or use a
juice squeezer. Repeat this method with the other half of the
lemon. Remove the seeds from the lemon juice, and add to
the larger bowl of fruit.

Children can help add the orange juice concentrate, cranapple
juice, and water to the fruit bowl.

Ladle into 4-oz dessert cups or paper/plastic cups. Place
on a cookie sheet and freeze overnight. Let thaw about
1/2 to 1 hour, depending on room temperature, before
eating so the consistency will be like a slush.

Yield: 12 fruit cups

Enjoy this refreshing treat and have a
Happy 4th of July week-end!

Best to you,

Lee Jackson, CFCS
Images Unlimited Publishing

 Enjoy the 4th of July with a Refreshing Treat Kids Can Make
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Vegetable Salad You and Your Kids Will Enjoy Making and Eating

PinExt Vegetable Salad You and Your Kids Will Enjoy Making and Eating
300px Romaine Vegetable Salad You and Your Kids Will Enjoy Making and Eating

Image via Wikipedia

The importance of vegetables in our diets has been spotlighted in my previous post. Today I want to give you a recipe using vegetables in a crisp and delicious way. This salad is a wonderful lunch-time or anytime meal or meal-addition. It is a recipe from Amy Houts’s children’s cookbook, Cooking Around the Calendar With Kids – Holiday and Seasonal Food and Fun, p. 11. You and your children will enjoy making and eating this salad.

Garden Salad

1 head Romaine lettuce, torn in small pieces
1/2 bunch green onions, chopped
1/2 red pepper, cut in strips
1 small bunch broccoli, cut up

1 package Ramen noodles
1 cup English walnuts, chopped
2 tablespoons butter

Dressing
1/2 cup oil
1/4 cup wine vinegar
2 tablespoons soy sauce

Prepare lettuce, onions, pepper, and broccoli. Children can mix all vegetables in a bowl. Place in refrigerator.

Children can slightly crush Ramen noodles by placing them in a plastic bag and lightly rolling over them with a rolling pin. Saute English walnuts in butter. Add noodles. Set aside.

In jar, place dressing ingredients and shake well to dissolve.

Drizzle dressing over lettuce and vegetable mixture just before serving. Gently mix. Then add the walnut-noodle mix. Serve.

Makes 4-6 servings

You will find this and other recipes for children in Cooking Around the Calendar with Kids – Holiday and Seasonal Food and Fun.  Make cooking with kids a priority at your house – your children will thank you, especially when they are in college or out on their own.  Go here for more book information:  http://ImagesUnlimitePub.com

Time well spent – cooking with children,

Lee Jackson, CFCS
To get you started, sign up for the Free Report at the right

 Vegetable Salad You and Your Kids Will Enjoy Making and Eating
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Good-Luck Black-Eyed Peas

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Image by jodigreen via Flickr

In the American South, people serve black-eyed peas and corn bread to bring good luck. Here is a recipe from the children’s cookbook, Cooking Around the Calendar with Kids: Holiday and Seasonal Food and Fun by Amy Houts that will get your New Year started right.

Amy suggests you soak the peas the night before.

Black-Eyed Peas

1 pound package dried black-eyed peas
1 ham hock

Children can place peas in a 4-quart pot; cover peas with water. Let set overnight. Drain water and cover with fresh water. Add the ham hock and bring to a boil. Turn down heat and let simmer, covered, for two to three hours, until peas are tender. Check occasionally and add additional water if necessary.

Adult will need to remove ham hock from pot. Separate the ham from the bones and fat. Put the ham back in the pot and discard the bones and fat. Serve in soup on the side.

Yield: 8 servings

Tomorrow I’ll send you Amy’s best Crusty Corn Bread.

Best to you,

Lee Jackson

P.S. For more information about Amy’s children’s book, go to http://www.imagesunlimitedpub.com

 Good Luck Black Eyed Peas
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