|My young Chef cooking Hash brown for our Sunday Brunch!|
Start them Young is a rule I live by because it works! I was 6 years old when I started learning how to cook rice. It was like a rite of passage. If you're a Filipino like me, learning how to cook rice is a basic skill you are required to learn! No, it's A MUST. And it wasn't easy back then. Imagine cooking with wood fires, clay oven and heavy stainless steel pots! It was an intense challenge to say the least. But thank goodness, my youngling don't have to deal with that now, which made cooking somehow easier to learn and easier for us to teach!
Luckily, our young 8 year old Chef is very receptive. She is a great help every Sunday, helping us cook our weekly Sunday brunch. Her current expertise is omelet! And if you are wondering, yes! I already taught her how to cook rice!
Here's how you can get your youngling to start early:
- Involve them - It's my first rule of engagement. They have to be hands-on to encourage interest. If they don't see the process, they won't get it and probably won't care either.
- Feed their curiosity - Children are natural curious bunch. Once engagement is set in place and they start asking question about the process, feed them with answers. But don't stop there, give them more even if they don't ask for it. Give them more reason to be curious.
- Start with their (basic) favorite - Start with a simple recipe that they love, like my daughter with omelet. The sooner they learn it, the sooner they can cook it for themselves and not you! My thing is, if they like to eat it, they better learn how to cook it.
- Let them create their own - Giving them the option to create their recipe the way they like it will encourage them more to cook it. My young chef now cooks her omelet several ways and all love it. The key is, giving the freedom of expression!
- Let them take charge - Every Sunday, we give our daughter a task to cook one recipe for our brunch. With minimum supervision, she gained the skill and confidence to do the work with less hassle and we get to enjoy the fruit of her labor!