Maia loves to cook and has been doing so almost every chance she gets lately.
She says that when she grows up, she either wants to work in a bakery as a chef, be a sewer, or work in a garden store. Sometimes she adds in artist. I look at that list and see myself—baker, sometimes seamstress, gardener, artist—and am struck anew by the extraordinary influence we have on our children.
If I were a scientist or animal shelter volunteer, would those appear on her list? It makes me think that maybe I should be more careful and strategic about the ways I spend my own time. I doubt I will change too much, but I could be more thoughtful about exposing my kids to new experiences and people.
Anyway… That’s all a lead in to Maia’s recent cake. She’s been cooking a lot these past few months and mostly on her own or with Daphne as sous chef and special taster. At 7 and 3/4 she is very careful, knows how to use the stove and oven, and sometimes even remembers to clean up after herself.
At first it was popovers, pancakes, muffins, baked bananas and other simple recipes from her own cookbook and recipe cards. But lately she’s been lobbying to cook something more complicated on her own. Specifically from my big “grown-up” cookbooks.
Earlier this week I got down my doorstop Best Recipe cookbook and Maia spent a good hour going through the dessert section and reading off the recipe names and discussing the merits and ingredients of each.
She eventually settled on the all-purpose birthday cake with raspberries and almonds. Just for fun (It wasn’t anyone’s birthday.)
…and baked and decorated it herself (with Daphne as helper/cheerleader). I helped interpret a couple things and chauffered the cooks to the grocery store (twice) but otherwise did my own thing while lovely cake smells starting wafting about the house.
We all declared it was an absolutely delicious cake! Perfect for an anytime celebration.
(Now if I could just get Maia to cook dinner…)
Do your kids like to cook? Do they cook anything on their own?