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Summer in Full Swing

Our garden is having a good year! It makes sense then, to have the children pull from its bounty. One of the cool things about growing a garden and having kids harvest from it, is that they take ownership of a food they may have otherwise not touched. They get to see, feel, and smell where it came from, and this somehow makes them more inclined to try it.

I chose a few recipes to involve the kids in this month, and some were so easy peasy that I'd encourage all of you to try them with your kids, and use them as a party appetizer when your own garden is in full swing.

We had an abundance of thyme, basil, and tomatoes so those were the ingredients I wanted to highlight. The first appetizer we made was an apricot bite. You basically take one dried apricot, put a little spoonful of goat cheese on top, and then add a single dried cranberry and a sprig of thyme. I had the kids practice their scissor skills to harvest the thyme and let them dress each bite.

When it came time to eat, some of them did not love the goat cheese, but ALL of them tried it, and a few were surprised that they actually liked it.

The second appetizer we made was a caprese salad stick. We hand pulled basil leaves and cherry tomatoes, and put them on a toothpick with a small ball of mozzarella. I think the kids had more fun making these than eating them, but I'll take it. Some of my most visceral memories from childhood involve the smell of tomatoes from my grandmother's garden. I know these kids will remember these smells and that feels good to me.

For this month's theme, we studied woodland creatures. We had a fun time making masks of various forest animals and exploring how they interact in the environment. It was a good month!

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