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Teach kids to cook (using a video game!)

Betsy Bailey is the co-founder and executive editor of SheKnows, Pregnancy & Baby, GeoParent and, among others. She has also served as the editor-in-chief of four national print magazines. She lives with her husband and their...

Cooking with kids

Teach a kid to cook, and you'll have to do much less of it. But when time is short, sometimes it's all you can do just to get a fast dinner on the table. Here's a fun way to teach your kids to cook: Let this video game do most of the work.

Wednesday night

Cooking with kidsGrilled Chicken with Lemon Sauce

Betsy: I helped grill the chicken for this recipe, but only because, again, we had a problem with time. The peach crisp took so long for the girls to prepare that they needed another pair of hands to get dinner on the table at a reasonable hour. Mira made the fresh lemon sauce herself. Bailey pounded out all the chicken and got it seasoned. This dish had incredible flavor for being so simple to prepare. Highly recommended as a weekday dinner. You can grill inside or out.

Bailey: Ooh, this meal was my favorite so far! The lemon sauce tasted delicious. And this recipe was the easiest of the four we made. Totally making it again, I'm sure.

Mira: This recipe was easy and came out perfect -- and beautiful! It tasted amazingly good. I would love to try this recipe again. It was very easy to make: Just grill chicken and make lemon sauce. One tip: When I made the lemon sauce for a family of six, it didn't look like enough at all. It was only a tiny bit. So my mom had me make a second batch of sauce to double it.

Cooking with kidsPeach Crisp

Betsy: This peach crisp was divine! Peach crisp made with canned peaches (which is the only kind I've ever made!) cannot even begin to approach the flavor and texture (not to mention nutrition) of this dish. While plenty sweet, this crisp still had a heavenly edge of tartness. I absolutely loved it. My only complaint is my portion was too small!

It took the girls forever to make this, though. They made it 100 percent by themselves. I'm glad I recommended they start early. I don't usually cook with fresh peaches for a reason: It's so time consuming to get them peeled and pitted. The game taught the girls how to slit the skin on the end of the peach and then parboil for a few minutes to loosen the skin. That helped, but it wasn't an entirely foolproof method. And there seemed to be no trick offered for the pitting chore. It's just messy and laborious. But they persevered, and I certainly enjoyed the fruits of their effort.

Bailey: The peach crisp was extremely difficult, and it didn't make very much. But, it tasted... wow... amazing. It was so good, but so hard to do. The trick for peeling peaches helped, but it still took us forever, and some of the peaches were still mushy and super hard to peel. The crisp part was fine, easy and tasted great.

Mira: The crisp part was fairly easy and the finished peach crisp tasted amazing, but there were very small portions for our big family. The crisp only took a few minutes, but the peaches took almost an hour to do. I was excited to do this part, but they were harder to peel than I expected! We did use the boiling trick, which helped on some peaches, but then it still got very hard. After Bailey finished making the crisp topping, she helped me finish peeling and pitting the peaches.

Also, the recipe said to boil the peaches for 30 seconds before moving them to the ice bath. That wasn't long enough. We had to start over, which also made it take longer.

Related video

Cooking how-to videos for kids

Have a child who is really serious about learning to cook? Check out the many online video tutorials for kids. We think Two Girls and Their Aprons is an especially cute series:

More cooking with kids


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