Chef Arlo

Did you know that daddy is a chef! At 21 months it’s about time that Arlo started learning a trade and so daddy picked up a packet of Pastry and set up an invitation to play on the kitchen table (apparently this is also called “mise en place” and is quite a professional set up.

Basically he chopped up lots of ingredients and set them up in little dishes ready for Arlo.

First of all they spread the included tomato sauce all over the dough base which they rolled out onto an oven tray.

Then they chucked on a mix of ingredients which work well together – leftover chicken, sliced red onion, peppers and cherry tomatoes along with chunks of mozzarella.

There’s no set way to do this – everything just got chucked on and then daddy sprinkled on some herbs and popped them in the oven for just shy of 15 mins.

These tasted delicious and the activity kept Arlo amused for quite a while. Lots of interaction with daddy and chatter about colours, vegetables and food items.

Have you tried cooking with your little one yet? Share some of your ideas in the comments – we would love to try them out!

The Cookie Monster

One blustery day in January cousin Paloma came over for the afternoon. I didn’t quite fancy heading out and about with two toddlers, so I set up an invitation to play with some gingerbread men.

Most supermarkets have a set like this, with some cookies, tubes of coloured icing and some decorative bits and pieces. I had some extra tubes of icing and toppings in the cupboard.

Here’s my “mum hack” – To set up the activity I used cupcake cases for each topping, and gave each of the kids a deep oven tray to try contain some of the mess – I set up on the Ikea Lack table so they had easy access.

Paloma is two and really got involved with the activity – squeezing her icing out carefully and choosing and placing her sweets nicely – before picking them off and eating them all.

Arlo on The other hand couldn’t wait to quality test the goods!

We had five cookies in our kit so we did save one for Paloma to give to mummy and Arlo for daddy. It was quite fun to see them both be so proud to gift their cookies and they certainly enjoyed the experience – learning to concentrate, talking about colours and textures and being creative.

I want to encourage Arlo to get involved with baking so this is the first step to building up trust and learning some basic kitchen rules with “real” food as opposed to his play kitchen.