Cooking Up Memories, Messes And Legacy In The Kitchen
Some of my earliest memories as a child are from inside the kitchen – my mom packing lunches, my grandfather seasoning el lechon, my brother sneaking a piece candy – and they’re all filled with the aroma and flavors of a family well loved. When I think of what food culture means to our family legacy, I get super nostalgic. There’s nothing more comforting than hanging out in my mom’s kitchen and I knew, once I became a mother, I wanted the same for my babies.
Cooking with kids is not a piece of cake, though! I’ve come to expect a huge mess anytime I invite little fingers into the kitchen to cook. I remember one afternoon, while making Sweet Potato Empanadas with my little girl, we prepared an egg wash to brush on the dough. Her sweet fingers worked diligently to crack the egg, gently drop it in and do it all without a single piece of shell landing in the bowl. Success! She was SO proud of herself!!!
Inspired by the victory, her little arms shot straight into the air, knocked the egg carton off the counter, firing 11 eggs to the kitchen floor. My baby girl stood on her step-stool in shock and near tears. She was devastated. Remembering the fundamental purpose of cooking with kids – to build a family legacy and establish a love of food culture – I decided that my motherhood could survive a few cracked eggs. I took a handful of my trusted Clorox Disinfecting Wipes and we laughed about the flying yolks while I cleaned up the mess.
3 Tips For Cooking Up Memories In The Kitchen
Cooking with kids can be messy, so in the spirit of making memories, here are 3 tips to creating a kitchen that embraces legacy building and a delicious food culture while also keeping the daily mess of life under control.
Create a kid-dedicated work station: Before you invite your little one into the kitchen, create a special work station just for them. A stool, kitchen scissors and/or specialized kitchen tools for kids, a timer and all your ingredients they’ll need to accomplish their task, which can be anything for picking out the bad beans, cleaning rice, making the salad, etc. Having everything prepared before the babies come running into the kitchen will help keep the mess and chaos to a minimum.
Keep disinfecting wipes on hand: Stay focused on what matters and not the impending mess. Clorox Disinfecting Wipes are great for sudden spills and quick clean up. Knowing that I can quickly wipe away a mess without interrupting our fun, making these wipes a great tool in creating memories in the kitchen.
Clorox Disinfecting Wipes help kill germs, bacteria, and remove kitchen grease and countless other nasties you find lurking in our homes. We use them on our hard, non-porous surfaces in the kitchen, including: stainless steel and chrome appliances, the kitchen sink, the refrigerator handle, cabinet knobs.
Cook up a purposed attitude: When I cook with my kids, I make it a point to have a great attitude. For me that means going into the kitchen with the purpose of making memories, and not necessarily dinner. That means I keep my cool despite the disastrous mess that always happen; it means repeating instructions several times with equal amount of joy; it means laughing and music and stolen kisses before the meal is ready. And since I’ve been doing it this way since my babies were little, the joy on their faces when I ask them to come help me in the kitchen is proof that it’s all worth it. They love cooking with their mama!
I sincerely want the kitchen to always be a source of joy for my kids, a place where they know they could find a mother who’s focused and patient. Really, the kitchen is where I hope that they will want to come home to when they’re older.
I’m not great about crafting with my kids, but this mama can cook up some great memories in the kitchen. Remembering these 3 simple tips as I approach the objective of family food culture is a great start to making your own family legacy, too!