Are you celebrating Easter with the kids? You know that the Easter egg hunts and other events are a great way to spend some time together. However, you can add more fun by sharing the Easter holiday cooking with kids. They’ll feel so grown and you won’t have to do it all alone! Here are a few Easter cooking activities you may want to assign to the kids this Easter.
Decide on the dishes you want to serve during your Easter meal. Assign chores to the kids that are age appropriate. Obviously, for safety, a very young child should not use an oven or stove. However, he/she may be able to help with preparing the salad, opening cans, making dessert, or arranging food on a plate.
While you’re preparing the main entree, ask your toddler to begin tearing the greens for a tossed salad. With a plastic vegetable knife, an older child may be able to cut up cucumber, tomato and other softer salad ingredients. Provide the ingredients to make homemade salad dressing using oil, vinegar and seasonings and take turns shaking the dressing to mix.
Let the child have fun preparing Bunny Pears for the family. On small plates, place a canned pear half with the narrow end at the top. Have the child press two raisins into the pears as eyes. Add a cinnamon red hot for the nose and two almonds as the bunny’s ears. Add a spoon of cottage cheese to the larger end for the cottony tail. Refrigerate the pears until they’re ready to eat.
If the child is old enough, ask them to peel and slice potatoes. If mashing, have the child set a timer for the boiling time. Once the potatoes are done, drain the scalding water and then let the child add the ingredients and mix or mash.
Prepare cupcakes ahead of time and have the child decorate the cupcakes. Food coloring can be added to plain vanilla frosting or you can use flavored frosting. Provide candies such as licorice ropes, jellybeans and cinnamon candy to decorate the tops of the frosted cupcakes. Add a few drops of green food coloring to shredded coconut, mix and sprinkle on the cupcakes to resemble grass.
A child who can read and follow directions can be entrusted with other food dishes. Provide the ingredients they need and allow them create an Easter dish. You may be surprised to find that your child actually enjoys cooking and is quite good at it.
If you’re hosting an Easter egg hunt, you may want the young teens to be in charge of the punch. A day or two before the egg hunt let them go through your recipe box or online recipes to find punch recipes they like. I advise going the recipe box route because if it’s in your box, then you know it’s good.
After the punch is made, challenge them to decorate the drink area. Remember, presentation is a big part of cooking. They could use all sorts of candy or add carrots (whole with tops), finger carrots, cabbage wedges (used for slaw later), radishes, cucumbers, and other veggies. Some peeled and cut veggies could also go on another table with dip.
Learning how to let go and involve your child in holiday meal preparation isn’t easy, but grit your teeth, turn your head occasionally, and make Easter holiday cooking with kids a yearly event! The results are well worth the effort.
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