Cooking with kids is easily one of the best ways to spend quality time with them, especially as they grow older. Some of the more obvious benefits are teaching them an essential life skill, promoting healthy choices and encouraging them to experiment with new flavours. But, maybe less obvious, is the opportunity it presents to really connect and have open conversations with one another. Whether it’s while cutting veggies, stirring a pot of soup while it simmers or keeping half an eye on a pot of potatoes, there’s always a little bit of time where you’re just hanging out and conversations are likely to start.
On a personal level, this has been an amazing discovery for me with my 9 year old son. While I used to be his world, these days, I’m often on the sidelines, while him and his father head out to golf a few holes or explore the forest behind our house. It’s left me feeling conflicted. I’m so proud of how he’s grown as a little man, but at the same time, I’m worried that he’s grown away from me a little….and I’m not sure that I’m ready for that. The good news though, is that he seems to be following in my footsteps, at least a little bit. This 9 year old boy of mine has also taken an interest in cooking and with his willingness to try new foods and adventurous spirit when it comes to mixing spices (sometimes for good, often for not), I’m positive he’s going to continue being interested for a long time to come.
*Disclaimer: I was not financially compensated for this post. I did attend the cooking class for free. All opinions are my own, based on my experience*
A long-time fan of the classes offered at Well Seasoned, when I heard about the Parent and Kids Cook Together class being offered, I was beyond excited. It was the perfect idea for a mother-son date day.
During the 2 hour class, we made individual Margherita pizzas, including making and kneading pizza dough from scratch. Our instructor, Chef Sue, showed us how to easily whip up a creamy Italian dressing to form the perfect base to our Italian Salad. Having taken a few minutes to enjoy the lunch we had just prepared, we next went to work making some completely delicious Apple Pie Fries. After the dough was rolled out and topped with apple pie filling, we left them to bake and took a little walk through the store.
Every foodie’s dream, Well Seasoned offers everything from spices, specialty oils and vinegars, hard to find and gourmet products, and pre-prepared gourmet food. They also offer a range of cooking tools to help you in all your culinary adventures. Whenever I visit, I can’t help but pick up a few fun items to play around with. This visit was no different. Along with a couple spice jars to replenish my spice drawer, I also picked up some Rhubarb bitters and preserved Hibiscus flowers that I’ve been dreaming up different uses for. If you’re stuck on ideas for a Mothers Day gift, a stop at Well Seasoned will certainly give you some inspiration.
To cap off the fun (and delicious) afternoon, we went back to the teaching kitchen to devour the apple pie fries with a scoop of vanilla ice cream and drizzled with the caramel sauce.
If you’re a mom looking to do something fun with your kids this Mothers Day, Well Seasoned has a special Mothers Day Brunch class where you’ll be preparing a menu that features duck confit and tomato bisque.
The recipe (and picture) below comes courtesy of Well Seasoned. I think this would make a beautiful addition to any Mothers Day meal. Or, if you were planning on making mom breakfast, try this recipe topped with a poached egg.
Baked Asparagus with Parmesan Crust, Candied Lemon Peel and Truffle Zest
Candied Lemon Rind
- 6 lemons
- 8 cups water, divided
- 2 cups sugar Panko Parmesan Crust
- 1 cup Parmesan cheese, grated
- ½ cup panko breadcrumbs
- 1 pinch sea salt
- 1 Tbsp. thyme, finely chopped
Asparagus & Assembly
- 1 bunch asparagus
- olive oil
- Salt and pepper
- Truffle zest
Candied Lemon Rind
- Peel and thinly slice lemon rind making sure there is no white pith.
- Boil 4 cups of water and blanch lemon rind for 1 minute. Bring sugar and the other 4 cups water to a simmer, dissolving sugar.
- Place blanched rind in sugar mixture and simmer for 30 minutes until light amber in colour and the rind is translucent.
Panko Parmesan Crust
- Combine all ingredients in a bowl.
Asparagus & Assembly
- Toss asparagus in olive oil, salt and pepper.
- Place asparagus on baking sheet and bake in 425ºF oven for 8-10 minutes.
- Remove from the oven & top with the panko-Parm crust, return to the oven & bake for another 8 minutes, until golden brown.
- Transfer to a plate and garnish with candied lemon peel and a generous sprinkle of truffle zest