Friday, June 13, 2014

Teaching Our Kids to Cook

Missy, here. I remember spending time in the kitchen with my mom when I was a kid. I remember her letting my friends and me bake. I remember, when I got into my teens, cooking for boyfriends, trying to impress them.

I also remember how TOTALLY CLUELESS my husband was when it came to cooking. I'm talking a disaster in the kitchen. No cooking sense AT ALL. So once we married and had a son, I made up my mind that any son of mine would learn how to cook and take care of himself!

I started oldest child in the kitchen early--stand on a chair to reach the counter early. And he enjoyed cooking. Today, he's 24, and he calls to ask for recipes and advice. He cooks for his girlfriend. He tries new recipes.

Son #2 came along and learned to cook for himself pretty well. He's not as adventurous. If left to his own devices, he's most likely to make ramen noodles or Kraft mac & cheese. But he could survive if he had to. :)

Then along came my daughter.

She has no interest in learning to cook. Well, I should amend that statement. Other than baking cakes and brownies, she has no desire to cook. I recently forced her to come in the kitchen and make tacos with me. I've done the same with spaghetti. She stirs and chops and does anything I ask her to do. But she's bored. Cooking is NOT her thing.

So I figured I'd failed. Assuming she would take to cooking naturally like I did, I'd waited too long to lure her into the kitchen (I should have nabbed her to cook when she was really young like I did with the boys!).

But then, last week on vacation…

Drum roll…


She got a craving for a something she'd seen on Pinterest. She added the ingredients to our grocery list. And then once she made the dish, she took photos of it and told me I HAD to share it on the Cafe blog. She reminded me again this week.

So, I bring you…my daughter's Poached egg and avocado sandwich (open faced).

Mash up a fresh avocado and spread it on bread or toast.
Poach an egg. Serve it on top of the avocado spread.

Best served with a beach view!

One tip we learned on a cooking show is to boil the water for poaching, then once it's boiling, briskly stir it to get it swirling. While the water is swirling, break the egg carefully into the middle of the swirl. Turn off the burner and let cook for desired time. My daughter wanted her yellow runny. You may want to cook yours longer (SALMONELLA ALERT! :))

[Note: I used to buy pasteurized eggs because my son liked his so runny. Now our grocery doesn't carry them, so I buy organic, free range, hoping they might be just a bit safer.]

Here's the spot I ate breakfast every morning last week. At beautiful Orange Beach, Alabama, on the balcony overlooking the Gulf!

Here's a photo of the view from the pool…

And the best place to be was my beach set up, where I spent my time reading all week long!

Ahhh, there's nothing like toes in the sand and a great book to read! Here's the chef, taking a break after making her fancy breakfast.

I'm so proud of her! I hope she's found a love of cooking after all. :)


  1. Oh, this sounds yummy! We eat a lot of avocados around here, and a lot of eggs, but never this way. Tasty!

    And we're headed to the beach in a few weeks. But I'm pretty sure the Oregon coast will look NOTHING like your pictures. I'll share some when we get back. But windy, rainy, probably cold. Lots of rocks. But hey, we love our coast!

    1. I hope y'all have a great time, Virginia! Cold and rainy could mean snuggling up to read inside! :)

    2. Virginia, exploring that coast is on my bucket list! I have no longing desire for Southern beaches, but the Northwest and Northeast craggy coasts??? OH YES!!!!!!! I've been working on an Pacific Northwest proposal and if it lands a contract for the delightful series I'm draggin' ol' Dave to the West Coast and playing in Washington and Oregon. And we'll have so much fun!!!!

    3. Missy, don't you love it when those first inklings of "Mom's not here forever" insights, especially with college looming?

      Great idea on the swirling, I've never thought of that. Thank you for sharing it.... I need to do something with my toenails. I keep meaning too, and life is too stinkin' busy, and I should just do it myself, obviously I'm not motivated enough but the toes in the sand pic (like that Zac Brown Band song Mary Connealy loves) inspires me to do something with my rugged toes before SUNDAY!!!!

    4. I finally got my toenails done on Wednesday! They looked horrible after having been at the beach. That's why I don't have a photo of my toes in the sand! Girl child had painted hers before we left. :)

  2. No raw egg for me! I used to do cake mixes as a kid and had to start supper a lot of times but cooking wasn't fun with my mom. My brother had an interest but my dad discouraged it which is how I ended up having to do it. But at least I got out of mowing lol! I enjoy cooking now when I have time

    1. Susanna, I used to enjoy mowing! But my dad rarely let us. I think he just enjoyed getting out of the house away from all the females. :)

  3. Pass that sandwich over here. It looks yummy!

  4. I've said before I wanted to move in with Virginia! after doing my pacific northwest virtual active hike and loving the scenery...then I did the one in the trinity mountains and thought that looked prettier...every time I do a virtual hike I wanna live there! lately though I've been doing freebies on youtbue and playing my own music - lately the music choice has been a hammered dulcimer cd of hymns that I found while cleaning/decluttering/ me a bit of calm.

    just found out at my job yesterday that we're being forced to swtich to adifferent 12 hr shift to match the plant and all the other companies. needless to say having no choice and being already so tired and burned out thanks to a coworker taking her 3rd short term disability for an elective surgery (I really need to get savvy on how to milk the system- that's something neither parent taught me) but with a tiring shft to begin with gets a BUNCH of overtime thrown in for someone out for 2 1/2 months then other vacation filling in the other week we had off it gets impossible to cope it seems.then to have it presented to us like we were bad little employees trying ot organize a union strike(we're not union) but they pay brand new operators more than they pay us in the lab - and I'm talking quite a bit more - and see nothing wrong with it t hen say 'there's the gate or apply for that job if you want that pay'. so crappy management could have made this more palatable but nope they don't care.

    anyways kitchien memories with my mom aren't great. my brother liked to experiment in the kitchen but my dad though I should be the one. for some reason I don't remember my mom fussing at my brother but every time I attmetped anything it was constant griping about not leaving a mess or how I didn't wash that bowl the second I finished, or the flour on the floor...sorta leaves a bad taste in your mouth. later she mellowed some though I was usually assigned to stirring something or cutting something but the table was usually 'safe' LOL! I think I've become like her. I always told myself I'd be patient with my kdis (didn't have any though) but I find myself very impatient and can see now why she was like that - she hated a mess and was tired after work so cooking for 3 who wanted the same meals over and over when she preferred other stuff (dad was meat and she was veggies) I know she just wanted to rest when she got home but couldn't. even when I started the meal she finished it when she got home if it was still cooking.

    later though my dad made the comment that he guessed it was a good thing my brother inisisted on cooking because goodness knew his wife didnt' do it LOL. (actually she told me she did but my brother complained so much that she told him to just do it himself so I guess he took after my mom too)

    1. Susanna, I'm sorry about the forced job change. I hope it works out okay.

      I need to check out those virtual hikes! That's about the only type I would enjoy :)