Crafty Cooks is a cookery club for children aged 2-11 years of age. The classes started their life in Marlow in 2007 when I, Anna, realised there was nothing like it in the area, and it would be the ideal way to work for myself, around my son. My little boy was 6months when the planning started and a year laer we were good to go so, whilst he went and had fun with the lovely Catherine, I welcomed lots of little people and their adults into my kitchen to make a whole range of culinary delights, some successful, some initially, less so with some children. One week we made sweet potato scones, the little lad in one of the sessions excitedly pulled back his towel to reveal the mashed sweet potato. Happiness turned to fear and then to well, anger. He turned his chair and faced away from the table muttering, and sometimes slightly more than a mutter that he hated vegetables and would NEVER touch them let alone eat them. Luckily he was little sister was there to step in and so for the majority of the class this young man sat, arms folded, lips pursed whilst his sister had a great time mixing and rolling and joyfully cutting her shapes, it was for me, a moment of complete hesitation. My first term, my first disaster, my first unhappy child, maybe time for a rethink. He tentatively watched on for the activity and then watched in disgust as the beautiful scones were placed in front of them all on the table. It may sound an odd recipe but the sweet poato really does make them… well, sweet and so lots of little mouths happily nibbled away, and then it happened. Whilst he thought nobody was looking a little hand came up from under the table and, quick as a flash stole a broken piece of scone and smuggled it into his mouth. He chewed as secretly as he could, and then the hand came again. That day this little boy who refused all veg, whose mother was at the end of her tether, and who had spent the entire class in revolt, left my house asking, in a rather demure voice, if he may ahve a whole scone all to himself. And that, that very moment, is what makes this job great!
Now, one son later we have lots of amazing ladies running classes around the UK spreading the fun of baking to lots of families. We make all sorts of foods from your all time favourites of gingerbread men and pizzas, to something a little more adventurous, mini quiches, sweet poato scones and beetroot cakes being just a few of our range. Many of the children that come are children with, shall we say, a more selective palate, and they come to class to grow in bravery and try new foods. The format of every class is that the kids come in and spend thirty minutes prepping their food, they then bring them over to the oven and we have ten minutes to concentrate on learning about new foods, having a tasting session and of course tidying up!
If you’ve not been to a class, why not see if there’s one in your area, and if there isn’t, get in touch and we can talk about you starting one!