When my son was a toddler, my sister-in-law gave us a wonderful cook book for kids by Mollie Katzen and Ann L. Henderson called Pretend Soup and Other Real Recipes.
I think it’s the BEST cookbook for young kids out on the market. Whenever I come across it in bookstores, I am so glad that it is still in print (it was first published in 1994). It’s beautifully illustrated with whimsical paintings by Mollie herself. The design is very accessible to children. There are easy, illustrated step-by-step recipes that go along with an adult version. We sometimes read Pretend Soup at bedtime for fun. My son loves to read all the quotes of the kids who made the dishes, which are quite funny and genuine (e.g. “This has a happy taste.”–Emma). Every recipe we’ve tried has become a favorite (Bright Pink Fruit Dip, Zucchini Moons, Carrot Pennies, Chocolate Banana Shakes, Hide and Seek Muffins, to name a few).
Recently when my mother was visiting, we made Popovers for her for breakfast. The process of making popovers is so fun and satisfying even for grown ups. This simple recipe just has five ingredients: butter, milk, flour, eggs, and salt.
When I think of when I was a single gal living in Manhattan and going to the Popover Café in the Upper West Side and ordering a basket of popovers for $7.25 ($2.25 for a single popover), it makes me laugh. Never again!
Recipe for Popovers from Pretend Soup:
2 tablespoons melted butter
1 cup milk
1 cup flour
¼ teaspoon salt
- Preheat oven to 375 degrees, and melt butter.
- Brush the insides of 12 muffin cups with melted butter
- Break eggs into the mixing bowl.
- Add milk and beat well.
- Add flour and salt and whisk until reasonable well blended – it doesn’t have to be perfect.
- Use a ¼-cup measure with a handle to pour batter into each muffin cup. They should be one-half to two-thirds full.
- Bake 30 minutes without opening the oven.
- Remove muffins from the pan and prick with a fork to let the steam escape. Spread with butter and/or jam, and eat!
Makes one dozen.