Thursday, December 19, 2013

Last Minute Gift Guide: For the Young Foodie

Trying to figure out what to do with kids this holiday break? Why not try cooking or baking with them? Today's last minute gift guide has a few tools that will help you get started.
Under $30 Gifts for Your Budding Chefs that You Can Still Get in Time for Christmas with Two-Day Shipping
These gifts are perfect for creating lasting memories with your kids or your nieces and nephews. Besides whether Gates would approve of the items, my criteria for choosing items were 1) whether they were available through Amazon Prime (free two-day shipping for Amazon Prime and Amazon Mom members), 2) would they assist with creating a memorable experience, 3) are they BPA-free, if applicable, and 4) do they cost under $30.
Mixing Bowls not Just for Baking
My picks from top clockwise are: Preserve Dry Measuring Cups, Green, Set of 4 (*affiliate link), $9.47; Fanny at Chez Panisse: A Child's Restaurant Adventures with 46 Recipes (*affiliate link), $17.09; Architec Eco Smart Purelast Measuring Cups in Assorted Colors (*affiliate link), $16.51; and Red Extra Large Mixing Bowl 0078 5160 (*affiliate link), $20.09; Curious Chef 3-Piece Nylon Knife Set (*affiliate link), $15.95.
Gates loves her set of melamine bowls from Zak Designs. They were a total impulse buy as I wasn't planning on shopping, I was simply cutting through Bloomingdales to get to BART one Saturday. The best thing about melamine measuring cups and bowls is that they'll withstand mistreatment. (When we baked over Thanksgiving we used my vintage Anchor Hocking bowls. Thankfully we didn't drop any, although we did accidentally crack one.)
Retro Melamine Mixing Bowls: Toddler Approved
Gates has stacked her melamine bowls and toppled them. She's also developed her own measuring standard, Gates' feet, taking care to see how many feet could fit in the various bowls. (We totally sanitized the bowls in the dishwasher after this exercise and before we used them again with food.) She's also helped make whipped mashed potatoes in them. And to date they remain scratch free. Note that they aren't microwaveable. (I made that mistake when I was in college and shattered a melamine mug.)
Gates loves books about food. One of her favorites is about Farmer Mike who grows gigantic pumpkins for the Half Moon Bay Pumpkin Festival each year. Another book she loves is about Challah. When her aunt, my sister, is in town over the break between Christmas and New Year's, we'll be making Challah from the recipe in that book. (We'll also be making another holiday cookie that's a family tradition. I shared two of our family's holiday cookie recipes earlier this month over on A Girl Named PJ.) Because I'm always curious how chefs raise their kids to appreciate food, especially after watching Master Chef Juniors, I wanted to find a book written for children by a chef. So when I found a cookbook by Alice Waters, Fanny at Chez Panisse, talking about her daughter, I just had to add it to my wishlist.
What tools and cookbooks are you using to raise your foodie?
Bon Appetit!
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Credits: All layouts designed by Eden Hensley Silverstein for The Road to the Good Life. All images taken by their respective manufacturers.
This post contains affiliate links, identified with (*affiliate link) following the linked text. I feature products that I own or that I am considering purchasing regardless of referral fees. I purchased one of the products featured in this post: the Extra Large Mixing Bowl by Zak Designs. All opinions presented are my own.