Cooking with Kids: Beyond Peanuts
In 2013 I am on a personal mission to spend more time in the kitchen and less on the phone ordering in take-out. A good friend of mine’s son was recently over and we were baking together( yes- a first for me!) she had a recipe that she knew I would only attempt if she physically went out, bought the ingredients, and set up shop in my kitchen.
I’ve always known her son had a peanut allergy but was extremely unaware of what that entailed, and since then I’ve made it my business to make sure I keep my house peanut free when her son comes over so that we can host more of these cooking sessions (okay- I’ll admit it- I’m getting slightly bit by the cooing/baking bug!) I found a fantastic, source called Beyond Peanutthat I think EVERY parent should keep handy in their kitchens. Here’s some information- straight from the creator…
Description and mission of Beyond a Peanut - Food Allergy Awareness Flashcards: These flashcards are designed to teach children and those who provide care for them how to stay safe with a peanut or tree nut allergy.
How can they help parents better explain to their kids – about peanut allergies? The cards have colorful illustrations on the front, which are easy for children to identify with. On the back are comprehensive safety tips for parents. A parent can hold up a card and ask a child “Is this safe?” This creates dialog around foods, why some are safe and some are not, and what can cause a “safe” food to become cross-contaminated.
How can these cards be both useful to parents and kids- especially when they’re in the kitchen cooking together? The kitchen is a great time to teach about cross-contamination. Without using peanut butter (or other allergens) you can demonstrate how easily a “safe” food can become cross-contaminated. This can occur by:
•using the same utensil on multiple food items. (Spreading cream cheese, and then cutting an apple)
•not thoroughly cleaning utensils. (making multiple kinds of cookies and not washing the cookie sheet between batches)
•ingredients accidentally dropping in a “safe” dish. (holding shredded cheese, or chocolate chips while baking and having some accidentally drop in a dish they are not supposed to be in.
The kitchen is a great area to teach children that staying safe goes “beyond” the nut itself.
Why should every family have one of these on their kitchen counter? Until there is a medical cure, education and awareness are the only way to keep a child safe. Many individuals are unaware of the vigilance necessary to provide a safe environment. Keeping these cards out will not only be a reminder to the child, but anyone else who may come to your home. A parent of an allergic child understands that they can not ask someone who is not living with the allergy to read the books that they have read. It is amazing to see what someone can learn about food allergy safety, in 15 minutes after reviewing the cards.
Where can you get it right now? : www.beyondapeanut.com