Thursday, June 12, 2008

Cooking creativity

I like to think we're pretty creative people in our house. But, one area where I'm not very creative is in the cooking realm. I don't love to cook. I do enjoy baking (particularly in the colder months) but cooking is just not my thing. So, I don't really involve the girls in cooking and that means they don't get to express their creativity in the kitchen all that much.

Today, though, Kai was at her Nina's house and making herself a snack. She hand selected which goldfish crackers to put into her cup. And, then asked me if she could sprinkle cinnamon sugar all over them. I immediately said no, more out of reflex than anything, and she looked so incredibly disappointed. It was a little heartbreaking 'cause I think she was really looking forward to making this snack her way.

And, as I busied myself with something else in the kitchen I remembered the bacon ice cream that won such acclaim on last night's Top Chef and it occurred to me that maybe discouraging her from mixing cinnamon sugar and goldfish crackers would hinder her creativity in the kitchen and forever prevent her from being willing to take a risk in the kitchen.

Yes, I know I tend to over think and over estimate the importance of the tiny things, but it convicted me enough to make me go back and hand her the cinnamon sugar and tell her to have at it. And, she was thrilled to have the chance to mix these flavors together.

Now I've made a resolution to let them cook with any ingredients they want at least a couple times a month and let them experience the fun of unlimited creativity in the kitchen.

I even tried her cinnamon and cheddar goldfish mix and it was darn good. Kind of like the preschool version of bacon ice cream. Maybe she'll make an appearance on Top Chef 30 someday!

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