Must have cookbooks for kids – roadtested and reviewed by an 8 year old

Ok, ok, I’ve put up with the nagging for close to six months.  My Miss 8 has been hounding me to let her guest post since we launched The Scoop on Nutrition and I’ve simply run out of excuses. Those of you who follow me on Twitter will know that she is a budding Junior Masterchef.  So I said yes.  And promised she could have full editorial control.  I hope you ‘like’ her recommendations and I trust we’ve solved some birthday pressie dilemmas for the little chefs in your life.   Over to you my darling Miss:

Revolting Recipes

I just got this great book by Roald Dahl.  Here’s a list of some of the recipes. From the BFG there is Snoozcumbers and Frobscottle.  The BFG stands for Big Friendly Giant. From Charlie and the Chocolate Factory there is strawberry flavoured chocolate coated fudge, toffee apple trees, lickable wallpaper, candy coated pencils for sucking in class, butterscotch, mallow pillows, stickjaw for talkative parents, Willy Wonka’s nutty crunch surprise and hot ice cream for cold days. There are lots more. Buy it to find out all the other recipes.  These recipes are eatable.  For example the Snozzcumbers is a cucumber stuffed with tuna and a filling of mayonnaise.  And you must be wondering what eatable marshmallow pillows are?  It is a pillow with mini marshmallows inside it.  You must be wondering that this recipe is not so imaginative by Roald Dahl, but it is.  The pillow is eatable too because it’s made from icing.

The Silver Spoon for Children

My Poppy in London got this book for me.  It has all of the Italian favourites with great pictures to understand how to make each step.  The first recipe I made out of it was my first time using the mortar and pestle. The recipe was Linguine and Pesto. I bought this Spaghetti measure from the money that my Poppy gave to spend on D-Store. It helps with measuring your spaghetti. Some pressure points of making the Linguine and pesto is let your mum or dad put the hot water on so you don’t burn yourself. Also make sure that you crush up all of the ingredients that you use for the mortar and pestle. Here`s a tip, it says in the book to use pine nuts, but my mum said if you crisp them up the flavour is different so when we tasted it it had a new catch of flavour. Mum’s are smart.  The book even has a recipe for ice cream without using an ice cream machine.

 Women’s Weekly Kids in the Kitchen

Isn’t the kids in the kitchen great?  It tells you all the great sauces for fish’n’chips and lots more. Great after school snacks and all the great midnight feasts.  Plus quick and easy recipes for Mother’s or Father’s Day.  Last Mother’s Day I made mummy pancakes in bed.  It was a success.  I’ve been getting better and better at pancakes.  The pressure point with pancakes is being careful not to burn yourself.  And don’t leave your pan on and go and ask if your mum or dad wants maple syrup, or lemon and sugar, or any other ingredients like Vegemite or butter, because it can catch on fire or maybe your pancake might burn.  And if that was the last pancake mixture, it would be burnt pancakes on the menu for breakfast for you.


This cupcake book gives all the great tips on how to ice a cupcake perfectly and how to make cupcakes to die for.  There are butter cream icings and lots of fantastic pictures.  This book is good because it tells you how many cupcakes it’s going to make and how many cupcakes the icing will cover. You can change the amount of icing sugar.  Pressure points are that you will be using lots of bowls and make sure that your cupcakes are cooled down so it is easier to ice them.

Cooking classes

I’ve been going to a local restaurant where a mum from our school, Emma Mackay was teaching us how to make recipes.  They were really fun and easy to make.  My favourite one was the cupcakes because it was a good chance to show Emma my great skills.  We’ve also made sushi.  I’ve tried it before but didn’t like it.  But Emma changed my feelings on sushi and now I’m a sushi freak.  We also made Anzac biscuits on Anzac day and got to get our hands dirty.  We also made rice paper rolls.  It was fun because we got to put in our favourite stuffings.

Editor’s comment:

Thank you Miss 8 wonderful tips and books for junior cooks.  My pick? Stephanie Alexander Kitchen Garden Cooking.  If anyone in Melbourne wants to encourage their kids in the kitchen, Emma Mackay is offering classes at Queen Victoria Market and other locations around town. And PLEASE.  Seriously, PLEASE leave Miss 8 a comment below.  She’ll be checking to see every hour minute of the day and night until 8:00pm bedtime. Love to hear your favourite cookbooks for kids too…let’s see if we can grow the list.

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