I do believe we have a little Food Boy in the making.
Although my three sons all enjoy helping me out in the kitchen, middle guy Isaac is the one who has taken a real interest in cooking. He's always enjoyed food unlike anyone I've ever seen and can seriously put away the goods.
But now Isaac also gets a charge out of making the food he consumes.
It started with me asking him to pitch in preparing meals, and then progressed to him volunteering his services. Now he's collecting (and creating!) his own recipes. And asking ME to step in when he needs me.
He's 7. I'm in heaven.
Lately, Isaac has developed a culinary crush on the Food Network's "Hungry Girl" (Lisa Lillien) and has taken to recording and watching her shows. He'll sit on the couch — remote in one hand, pencil in the other — and write down the recipes she shares, dutifully pausing and rewinding every few minutes to make sure he gets it just right.
After a recent show on "Movie Night" snacks, he put his research to work and prepared a full spread for the family. We munched on Chili Cheese Dog Nachos, Chewy S'mores Snack Mix and Cherry Lemonade Super Slushies, his favorite recipes from that episode.
And while that's not the healthiest dinner around, I do applaud Lisa's commitment to calorie cutting. She always substitutes lower sugar/fat ingredients to create kid-approved recipes that are indulgent but less destructive on the ol' diet.
Check her out at www.
Isaac's latest creation occurred this past Friday when he came home from school determined to make the family dessert that night.
That's great, I said. Where did you find this recipe?
"I made it up."
Then he proceeded to get out five small dessert cups, which he filled with alternating layers of Nutella, whipped cream, cake icing and crushed graham crackers. ("I'd prefer Nilla Wafers," he said, frowning, "but I'll make this work.") For a finishing touch, he perched a tall rolled cookie straw in each dish.
It was a nice-looking parfait, I must say. But unlike the Hungry Girl, he didn't cut any sugary corners and served us something lethally sweet.