I’m a mom who focuses on cooking nutritious meals and snacks for my family. Most days, I do let a few kernels of junk food slip through the cracks and into my 9-year-old and 7-year-old children’s mouths, but I believe that the vast majority of what they eat should be beneficial to their bodies. Seeing them eat nourishing food is important to me, but even more importantly, I want them to want to eat healthy food. It’s tricky to foster that desire in children.
It’s nice to know that I’m not alone in encouraging my children to want to eat wholesome food. Have you heard of ChopChop Magazine? It’s a wonderful cooking magazine that gets kids to work together in the kitchen with their parents to cook real food. Here are a few elements of ChopChop’s great cooking philosophy:
- It stresses the simple values of cooking together as a family and sharing healthy meals.
- It avoids calorie counting or demonizing specific foods.
- It advocates wholesome meals as a vital step toward resolving the obesity epidemic.
I had the opportunity to attend a food photography event hosted by ChopChop at Sofra Bakery in Cambridge, Massachusetts. Food stylist Catrine Kelty presented many insightful tips about how to set up food for a photograph so it will look as delicious as it tastes. She came with a bag full of tricks, including paper and fabric designs, beautiful plates and bowls, and a variety of surfaces that work well with food photos. She talked about the value of telling a story with a photo and including elements that suggest someone has been there or is about to eat the food. As a professional food stylist, Katrine has a whole rental unit where she stores her props and a long list of favorite stores where she shops for cute bowls and fabric.
Sally Sampson, the founder of ChopChop and author of 21 cookbooks, also spoke at the event. She gave several helpful suggestions about how to get children involved in the cooking process. For younger children, the adult can measure the ingredients ahead of time and the children can dump them into the bowl. Sally suggested bringing children’s math skills into the kitchen by having them count items as they drop them into a food processor. She also talked about having children listen to the food processor as it purees food, seeing if they can hear the difference between the sound when it starts chopping and the sound when the food becomes pureed. I love this idea of including a child’s different senses in the cooking process.
ChopChop for the Holidays: Giveaway
I’ve been searching for a fun family cooking magazine that focuses on real food, and this is as good as it gets. The pictures are beautiful, the recipes are simple and healthy (but not so healthy that your children will be turned off), and the focus is on kids in the kitchen. This magazine should be in every house with children. I encourage you to check out their website and consider subscribing. This is the perfect holiday gift for any family with children ages 5-12. You can buy a 1-year subscription for $14.95 or a 2-year subscription for $24.95, and each subscription helps pay for an additional subscription for a family in need. I love gifts that give back, so this one is a real win-win in my book.
I’m so excited about this magazine’s message and approach, and I’m happy to say that ChopChop has offered to give away a one-year subscription to one of my readers. Update: This giveaway has ended.
You can enter this giveaway up to 7 times. Just make a separate comment below for each of the ways you’re connecting with this blog or with ChopChop. If you already follow us in some of these ways, say that in your comment. Entries will be accepted until 5 p.m. EST on Friday, November 16. A winner will be randomly selected and will have 48 hours to respond to me with details about where to ship the subscription. Good luck!