Early in December my friends Joshua and Emily came to dinner with their two kids. Our goal: to have the kids cook dinner for us. We settled on pizza and I had prepped as much of the work as possible. They had some grown-up assistance but took to their responsibilities like true chefs.
A discerning eye and headlamp for night time harvesting – only the freshest produce would do.
Carefully placing each chosen ingredient. Balance is key.
The fruits of their labors – one plain Jane cheese pizza to please the pickiest toddler palate, one Thundering Hooves ham on a Mt. Pleasant munschli based bechamel, one Skagit River sausage, home pickled Tonnamaker cherry bomb peppers and previously frozen basil leaves from the yard. The tomato base came from previously made and canned sauce from the garden. Our concession since River Ranch stopped selling fresh mozzarella and my freezer was all out of the surplus cheeses I had made all summer – Tillamook mozzarella. The kids didn’t mind though.
We rounded out the dinner with Rockridge Orchard apple cider, just pulled carrots, and a freshly picked salad featuring Estrella Wynoochie blue and home pickled beets from our yard which we discovered that even the toddler liked.
It was a blast putting the kids in charge of dinner and watching them work together to pull it off. The grown ups assisted when necessary but otherwise relaxed and enjoyed the face of what I hope will be many meals to come. Ya hear that kids? Now I know you can do the cooking!