Many of us think of French cooking as complicated, time consuming and just plain intimidating. We assume it requires special ingredients we don’t usually have on hand and sophisticated equipment.
And to teach French cooking to kids? Sounds like a recipe for disaster, doesn’t it?
Toronto-based food and travel writer and educator Mardi Michels proves otherwise in her first cookbook, In the French Kitchen with Kids (Appetite/Random House, 2018).
A full-time French teacher to elementary school-aged boys and author of the popular eat. live. travel. write. blog, she runs after school cooking classes twice a week for 7-14-year-olds called Les Petits Chefs and Cooking Basics. They meet in the science lab to whip up such classic favorites as macarons, madeleines, pains au chocolat, and baguettes. They make short crust and choux pastry from scratch, and with proper knife skills, chop, slice and dice fruit and veggies to make berry galettes, ratatouille, steak frites, and beef and carrot stew.
So what makes this particular kids’ cookbook a standout among the zillions of others?