Having spoken many times about our willingness to experience foods from other cultures at least once, we were excited when we discovered a book named Kids Cook French. As you can tell by the title, it’s a children’s cookbook that talks them through recreating the delicious French dinners. Author Claudine Pépin manages to give us a number of healthy, tasty, meals that are fun and easy to create.
It’s very much a family project, as the recipes all belong to Pépin and her known father Jacques Pépin, while he and Claudine’s daughter provide illustrations for the book. There are tips throughout the pages, with some offering encouragement, and others advice on how to make the best dish possible. Within the first few pages many words of reassurance, encouraging the reader to ‘experiment and adapt the recipes’ to suit their own tastes and that of their family.
As explained in the Note for Parents section, Pépin didn’t think she would be able to successfully create a book for children because she didn’t cook ‘kid food.’ By ‘kid food,’ she means pizza, nuggets, chips and similar junk food. She had been raised to appreciate all kinds of food, not processed meals, and suspected she would fail at providing a cookbook for kids. She wrote down her recipes for real food, and we have to admit, Kids Cook French is one of the most impressive cookbooks we have ever come across.
The main reason we love this book is because all our meals are made from scratch, the only frozen foods we have in our freezer are meat and vegetables, and we spend a good hour peeling kilos of potatoes on a Sunday for our roast, instead of buying frozen ones. In the book only fresh ingredients are used, with no mention of processed foods anywhere.
If children (and adults) aren’t given the chance to try new foods, they will automatically reject it with no real reasoning. By giving them fresh produce and home-cooked, healthy meals, they will not only grow up with an appreciation of good food, but also lead a healthier lifestyle, and save a decent amount of money while doing so!
Turn an ordinary cooking lesson a language class too, because, as well as providing every recipe in English, it also provides the French translation opposite. This unique addition is favoured in our home, as everyone is at least attempting to learn a language, be it Italian, Latin, Greek, and of course, French.
If you’re looking for a cookbook to help teach your children about French cuisine, this book is the one to go for. Simple yet delicious, the recipes can be created by kids, with the adults supervising. They will enjoy the fact they managed to put together an entire meal for the family by themselves, while parents can be glad they’re teaching their children a valuable life lesson.