toby cooking

A few years ago, my twin sister sent Toby and Anton a gift…

Pretend Soup by Mollie Katzen and Ann Henderson. At first, I wasn’t sure if they would get into it. They liked baking cookies with me, but were these recipes too routine? Or vegetable-forward?

But Toby and Anton were instantly captivated. Each recipe features two pages of illustrated steps, almost like a comic strip. How cool is that? (There’s also a list of exact ingredient amounts for adult helpers.) Toby began whipping up chocolate-banana shakes and carrot pennies, and Anton loved making bagel faces and quesadillas. Once, when I’d had a stressful day, Toby offered to make Lemon-Lime Soda Pop; he ran to the bodega for the ingredients and, 15 minutes later, handed me a fizzy drink. Parenting, just like I pictured it!

Also, my sister’s seven-year-old daughter recently made French toast from the book and gave it a thumbs up.

Thoughts? Are the kids in your life into cooking? Any recipes you’d recommend? I’m not a great cook (understatement), but it’s a fun activity to share with them.

P.S. How to get kids to talk at dinner, and a baby food epiphany.