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Who’s Cooking Dinner Tonight? Your Kids Are, That’s Who!

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How many of you are tired of having to prepare dinner every night only to hear complaints of “yuck, I don’t like this?” Well here’s an idea for you, why not have your kids cook dinner tonight? I think it is important for our children to learn to cook healthy meals for themselves. One of these days they will be out there on their own and while they may not make great food choices in the beginning, they will hopefully realize that they feel better when they eat good whole foods they prepare themselves. I want my boys to know they have a choice because they have the skills to cook a decent meal. Besides all that, my future daughter-in-laws will thank me!

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As the mother of 2 boys, I sometimes neglect teaching them to cook. When I had the opportunity to take the boys to a cooking class with Chef Nikki Shaw I took it! We met at Cooking LA with 6 other families. What I loved most was Chef Nikki explaining to the boys how important it is to cook healthy and cut bad fats from your diet.

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The boys learned to use a food processor, the oven, and a stove. In addition, they learned to make an appetizer and a main course. The dishes revolved around baked french fries. What kid doesn’t love those? The first thing they made was fresh pesto to dip their fries in. What a good idea. Next they made meatballs with marinara sauce over steak fries….brilliant!!

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The boys had a great time cooking and best of all they loved the food! Thank you Chef Nikki Shaw for a fun and educational night. My boys will definitely be cooking dinner this week!!!

Recipes by Chef Nikki Shaw
Crowd Pleaser Pesto Dip
Prep time: 5 min | Cook Time: 25 min | Serves 3-4
Ingredients:
1 bag (2lb) ripple cut fries
¼ cup pine nuts
1 teaspoon garlic, minced
2 cups packed fresh basil leaves
1 cup extra virgin olive oil
1 teaspoon fresh lemon juice
½ cup grated parmesan cheese
Instructions:
1. Bake fries according to the package directions.
2. Coarsely chop pine nuts and garlic in a food processor
3. Add remaining ingredients and blend until smooth
4. Serve with fries

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Mouthwatering Meatball Marinara
Prep time: 13 min | Cook Time: 30 min | Serves 3-4
Ingredients:
1 bag (2lb) steak cut fries
½ lb Italian turkey sausage, casings removed
1 Tablespoon olive oil
1 jar (24oz) Marinara Sauce
¼ cup grated parmesan cheese
Instructions:
1. Bake fries according to the package directions.
2. Shape meatballs. Smaller meatballs cook faster so about 1”
3. Heat oil and cook meatballs over medium heat.
4. When meatballs finish cooking, add the marinara sauce and cook until hot.
5. Arrange fries on a platter and spoon the meatballs and sauce over the cooked steak fries.
6. Sprinkle parmesan cheese on top and wah-la ..dinner is served!!

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The event was sponsored and recipes are courtesy of CravOn Fries, however, Terri does not endorse this product after learning that Caramel Color (Annatto) is in the product.

Terri Garcia has been a Southern California girl since the age of two. She has lived in Los Angeles County and both North and South Orange County. A stay-at-home mom and confessed “pinaholic”, she loves all things creative. She believes in giving back and practicing random acts of kindness. She finds joy in creating thoughtful, creative gifts, traveling, historical fiction and most importantly being mom to two very active boys. Similar to the Little Red Hen, she likes to do things herself; although in the end, she will happily share the homemade bread with family and friends.
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