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Pretend Soup and Other Real Recipes: A Cookbook for Preschoolers and Up Hardcover – March 1, 1994
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From School Library Journal
Carolyn Jenks, First Parish Unitarian Church, Portland, ME
Copyright 1994 Reed Business Information, Inc.
- Publisher : Tricycle Press; First Edition (later printing) (March 1, 1994)
- Language : English
- Hardcover : 96 pages
- ISBN-10 : 1883672066
- ISBN-13 : 978-1883672065
- Reading age : 3 - 7 years
- Grade level : Preschool - 2
- Item Weight : 1.18 pounds
- Dimensions : 8.25 x 0.5 x 10.31 inches
- Best Sellers Rank: #7,915 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
- Customer Reviews:
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Top reviews from the United States
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I much prefer Katzen’s Honest Pretzels cookbook for kids. It has more healthy and savory options.
I thought this would be a daunting task since the ones I had picked up to look at at Williams-Sonoma were not simple enough for her. My friend told me about this series of cookbooks for children so I checked out "Salad People" from the library and bought this one, "Pretend Soup". We haven't cooked from them yet so I can't compare how the recipes from the two books are similar or different.
but, I can tell you that I sat down with my daughter to show her the book and she is over the moon. She loves the drawings of each step with simplified instructions (like "1 cup" and it shows pouring milk into the bowl, etc.) She is so excited.
And, more importantly, all of the recipes in this book are things that she will eat. We're not over-the-top health nuts in our home but I am very careful to expose my children to a wide variety of ingredients and ethnic foods. Maybe my children won't be a fan of using zucchini for the pizza faces, but that's an easy substitution. The bulk of everything is very appealing to them and healthy. Yes, I will have to help with much of it and there are parts where the instructions call for a dough that mom or dad made before hand, but I think that's reasonable. If I want my child to learn to cook, then I will have to be setting that example first.
We love it and I love the diet and recipes in the cookbook. I love how easy it is for her to follow. And I love that it sets a clear layout for how we will be interacting when we cook together (I make the dough, she pats it out and puts toppings on, etc.)
The layout for these books is this: each recipe is four pages long. The first two pages are for the adult involved to read. The second two pages are simply drawn step-by-step visual instructions for the child to follow. Mollie Katzen does the artwork in these books and it's very charming.
M. Katzen has another book for children, Honest Pretzels: And 64 Other Amazing Recipes for Cooks Ages 8 & Up , which I think is for a little older crowd...I look forward to getting that one for my niece when she's ready for it.
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The recipes are so simple that they are unnecessary. I don't need a book to tell me how to spread on canned refried beans on a tortialla and sprinkle it with cheese before serving. A book with *only 19 recipes* has no business including both "zucchini coins" (fried zucchini slices) and "carrot pennies" (fried carrot slices).
There are tips on how parents can help their kids cook, but from what I've seen, they're rather obvious and unhelpful. There are no photos of the food, only simple drawings, so unless you child can read, don't expect the book to inspire them to cook.
We've only made one recipe so far, blueberry pancakes (another rather simple recipe), and the decribed ratios created batter that was way too thin to hold a blueberry. You'd think with so few recipes, they would at least ensure the ones included would work according to the directions.
Spend your money on something else.
The book contains recipes for meals; one version for the adult and a comic strip version for the child to follow.
I had hoped that the recipes would be mainly healthy but most are for cakes and fairly fattening food with a lot of dairy. I don't think most kids need encouragement to cook and eat cakes! I'd have preferred ways of getting them to eat more veggies and pulses. I'm also a bit disappointed in the illustrations, they are really basic and not very inspiring.
I'd recommend this if you have a rainy afternoon and would like an activity, but not if you want to improve your child's nutrition!