Through the Looking Glass Children's Book Reviews

Kid's Cooking: A Very Slightly Messy Manual

Kid's Cooking: A Very Slightly Messy Manual

From the editors at Klutz
Illustrator:  Jim M'Guinness 
For ages 6 to 8
Klutz, 2010   ISBN: 978-1591748991

Kitchens are wonderful places where meals are cooked, feasts are planned, and messes are made. It is a place where kids can make something creative that is also edible (most of the time.) The skills that they learn in a kitchen will serve them well in the future.

In this special spiral bound cookbook, the editors at Klutz have brought together a wide variety of recipes, not all of which produce things that humans can eat. After all, children also need to know how to make homemade play dough, face paint, finger paints, soap bubbles, and dog biscuits.

The food recipes are divided into four sections. There are breakfast dishes, lunch and snack recipes, dinners and salads, and desserts. The best thing about all the recipes is that they are written and presented in a very kid-friendly way. For each recipe, children can see right away what they are going to need, because there are illustrations of each ingredient and each kitchen tool that is used. For example, for the French toast and strawberry butter recipe, we see pictures of frozen fruit, a box of powdered sugar, two eggs, a carton of milk, a tin of cinnamon, a cube of butter, four slices of bread, a pie tin, a spatula, a frying pan, a blender, and measuring implements.

Below the ingredients and tools box, there is a section that describes how to get ready for cooking. In other words, the prep work. Then there is section explaining how to cook the dish, which is followed by a section that shows young cooks how to serve their creations.

The recipes have been chosen to appeal to even the fussiest of children. For example, there is a recipe for Non-Yucky Vegetables, and Alphabetter Soup. Who can resist recipes with names like these?

Written and presented with care to appeal to young cooks, this title (with its attached measuring spoons) would make a great gift for children who have a hankering to get cooking in the kitchen.

For each recipe, Jim M’Guinness has created amusing little illustrations showing, among other things, flying fish wearing top hats and a singing chicken.