Kids learn to cook at Kick Back Camp |

Kids learn to cook at Kick Back Camp

Belinda Grant/Nevada Appeal Joseph Glahn and Mackenzie Gilliam, both 6 years old, reach for berries to make fake soup. They are attending a cooking class with Kick Back Camp in Mills park gymnasium kitchen. The classes will go through the summer every Monday.

It seems like we spend all winter wishing for summer to get here. And then it comes with a bang by the Fourth of July and then we’re too hot and wishing for cooler weather. Ralph and I had a great Fourth. We went to Washington, D.C., just to sit on the west lawn of the Capitol, listen to the concert, and watch the fireworks. We also managed to squeeze in a few museums and quite a few of the monuments. I loved the World War II monument, and they were all so very moving. But talk about hot! Way too hot and humid for me. and let’s not even talk about the record rainfall on the Fourth.

With summer here and family life so hectic, now would be an excellent time to let your children help you in the kitchen. They can do a lot more than you think. I’ve been teaching a cooking class at the community center one day a week for the kids in Kick Back Camp, the summer program run by Parks and Recreation. What a great job they do keeping all those kids busy and entertained throughout the summer. I’ve signed up my granddaughters for the swim lessons. All the lifeguards do a phenomenal job of teaching all those children how to float and swim.

So, when Barbara Singer approached me about doing a cooking class for the kids I thought to myself, piece of cake. It’s more challenging than I was expecting but the kids certainly keep you on your toes and they really want to learn. I teach three different age groups each week 3rd, 2nd, and 1st graders, then Fourth, 5th and 6th, and 7th, 8th and 9th graders. There are about 20 kids in each group and I use a hands-on approach. I’m trying to show them they can make their own “fast food” and why it’s better for you. I try and help them to make better nutrition choices. Most of the kids eat everything and there are a few picky ones but I try and tell them to just try it and maybe you might like it and if you don’t then you don’t have to eat it.

These first recipes that I’m going to share with you are geared for the younger ones because no real cooking with heat is involved. We always start out each of the three classes with a list of kitchen rules the first and foremost being to wash your hands and all of them know that rule, then we go over the rest of the list. The recipes are from a cookbook called “Pretend Soup.”

Linda Marrone has lived in Carson City since 1973, and with her husband, Ralph, formerly operated Marrone’s Restaurant in Carson City and Somethin’s Cookin’ Catering.