Ms. Elaine Kneeous

Jennifer is a one in a million stay-at-home mom. (More like one OF a million stay at home moms!) She graduated from a liberal arts college but there is nothing liberal OR artsy about her. She is married to Kevin Fischer of This Just In, and together they have a beautiful young daughter Kyla Audrey. In no particular order she loves dogs, wine, a good bargain, her family, pizza, and entertaining. Follow her blog of all things miscellaneous including but not limited to cooking and baking, entertaining and party planning, being a mommy, and homekeeping.

Culinary yes-yes #72

There are, essentially, two reasons why we bother subscribing to Time Warner Cable.  Anything sports-related and anything Disney Jr.-related.  I don’t watch TV at all; Kyla is limited to Disney Jr., Nick Jr. and PBS; Kevin watches ESPN and Fox News.

I never thought in a million years (being the antithesis of a sports fan) that I would utter the words, “Thank God for March Madness.”  But this season as Kevin recuperates from a total hip replacement there’s not much the poor guy can do.  Icy driveways and walkers don’t mix; he’s read books ‘til his eyes are bloodshot; clearly “Daytime TV” is not an option.

Then again, there is one genre of before-Prime Time viewing that can be a saving grace:  COOKING SHOWS.  I’ve never seen Kevin close enough to our oven or stove to turn it on… he’s the grill master, remember.  Still, in the good ol’ days of quality programming on the Food Network, we both loved watching Emeril.  Can’t you just hear the “BAM!” now?



Oh how we miss Emeril Live! as a regular feature.

Back to Daytime TV and cooking programs…  Since Kevin is a classic channel surfer Kyla is often around when he pauses on the PBS station for America’s Test Kitchen.  Lo and behold, not only does she love to eat and love to help Mommy make cupcakes, she loves to watch cooking shows!  Having seen a few episodes now, she actually asked Kevin the other day if he could find a cooking program for her to watch!  I’m more than fine with that…  After all, Sofia the First is never going to teach her how to roast a chicken.

Growing up, I was always welcome in the kitchen.  As I got older it was free labor since chopping, slicing and mincing weren’t exactly favorite duties.  But I learned at an early age the proper way to read a recipe, how to measure ingredients, and what to do in a “cooking emergency.”  (Generally that meant ordering take-out.)

I can’t imagine not including Kyla in the same fun that I had at her age.  She is moving beyond just licking batter from the spoon:  I’m teaching her math skills in measuring; patience in waiting for things to boil, cool, or thicken; and of course the joy of preparing delicious meals for those we love.  One thing is for certain:  she won’t be a typical starving college student who tries to survive on ramen noodles and fast-food pizza.  By then, her palate & abilities will be so advanced she’ll figure out a way to make Crème Brulee in a dorm-approved toaster oven.  Or perhaps her Easy Bake Oven as she proudly shows off cupcakes made in January 2013:




Of course Emeril isn’t the only celebrity chef with kids or who advocates cooking with them.  But since he’s one of the few that I actually like and find to have any talent, skills and charisma, he’s my focus.  You probably have seen these at your local book store or online:  




How could you resist picking up a copy of each for you and your budding culinary apprentice?  He knows what he’s talking about:  Emeril learned to cook at an early age after watching his mom, Miss Hilda, in the kitchen. Some of the first dishes he created were vegetable soup and French toast.  While this particular interview with Mr. Kick It Up A Notch might be a bit dated, his advice for cooking with your children is timeless.

I truly look forward to the rest of Kyla’s childhood, adolescence and young adulthood with her at my side in the kitchen.  There are moments to teach, to bond, to be silly, to have fun, to nourish not only the body but the soul.  SO MANY opportunities (and I’m sure some hilarious stories) await.

Cooking with your children for many wonderful reasons?  Oh yeah, Babe, it’s a Culinary Yes Yes!



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