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Best Cooking Gifts for Kids (and their Parents)

Image courtesy of the Kids Cook Real Food online course (details below).

Image courtesy of the Kids Cook Real Food online course (details below).

Are you a parent who loves to cook and eat well, and want to get your children involved in the kitchen? Or maybe you’re the uncle/aunt/godfather/godmother/best grownup friend of a child who’s already figured out the kitchen is the happiest place in the world? Here is my selection of best cooking gifts for kids, all of them adorable but actually functional, to encourage that budding passion.

This is one in a series of themed gift guides I am publishing this week; here’s the complete list of my best gift guides.

LIMITED-TIME OFFER! Etsy is currently running a cool promotion for new customers: if your first order is over $50, you’ll get a $10 gift certificate toward a future purchase! (Valid until Dec. 12.) I’ve marked Etsy items below so you can identify them easily by searching for “Etsy”.

Best Cooking Gifts for Children (and their Parents!)

Handmade Kid’s Apron [Etsy]

apron

These adorable handmade aprons, for toddlers or older children, have an easy velcro belt so they can put it on and off independently, whatever their age. My eldest son Milan is in love with his, and he won’t let me get started with anything until he’s slipped it on. Karla Norgaard makes these by hand in the US using really sweet fabrics, and she is offering C&Z readers a 15% discount if you use the promo code CANDZ.

Kids Cook Real Food Online Course

Kids Cook Real Food

We all have good intentions in teaching our kids kitchen skills, but knowing where to start and how to go about it isn’t so easy. Katie Kimball’s online class Kids Cook Real Food is the best resource I’ve found on the subject, offering a series of beautifully produced, on-point videos that are incredible learning tools.

Enrollment for the course is only open a few times each year; if you fall outside those windows, just add your name to the waiting list. You can offer the course as a gift — check the FAQ “Can I give the eCourse as a gift?” at the bottom of this page — and you’ll receive a printable gift certificate for the lucky recipient. There is a money-back guarantee so they can decide if it works for them.

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Best of October

In the garden of the Picasso Museum.

In the garden of the Picasso Museum.

I write this from Stockholm, where I am spending the fall break with my family. I have developed a serious crush on the city and can’t wait to tell you all about it. In the meantime, I come to you with Parisian highlights from the month of October! Please chime in with your own MMM’s (most memorable moments), I’d love to hear about them!

Best Eats Last Month

Best of October 2016

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Best of September

Golden sunset on the Moulin de la Galette.

Golden sunset on the Moulin de la Galette.

Who’s with me in the I heart September camp? I enjoy the summer so much, and love it when Paris empties out and we get the city all to ourselves. But this is all to set the stage for that magical month of September: the good resolutions, the exciting new projects, and the very best, most bountiful time for French produce.

I have been cooking up a tornado with my fab assistant Anne, developing and testing five to six new recipes each week for my upcoming book, Tasting Paris. It’s been a lot of fun, we have been eating really well, and I can’t wait to share with you. (In the meantime, you can follow along through my Instagram stories!)

Best Eats this September

Best of September 2016

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Best of July

A Bench on Avenue Trudaine

Have you had a chance to go on vacation yet? Will you be skipping town later, or not at all this year? Whatever your situation, I hope you’re having a beautiful summer full of small joys and vibrant flavors. Seeking summertime inspiration? Here are my best summer recipes!

Best of July 2016

• I love height-of-the-summer tomatoes so much it hurts! The producer who delivers a weekly selection of vegetables to our door every Monday has switched to full-on tomato mode with fruits of every color, every shape, and fabulous flavor; I couldn’t be happier. If you want to see what his selection looks like on any given week, watch this Facebook Live video. As for my favorite tomato recipes, check out my panzanella, my gazpacho and the tomato panade that’s included in The French Market Cookbook.

• I was out running some errands in the grands magasins neighborhood (= the Printemps and Galeries Lafayette department stores on Boulevard Haussmann) and I dropped by Café Pouchkine. Their blueberry bostock caught my eye, and I’m glad it did: it’s a slice of brioche garnished with almond cream à la almond croissant with a blueberry filling tart enough to balance out the overall sweetness of the pastry. Mind-blowing!

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Best of June

I just love those ultra-Parisian entrance lobbies with the vintage tiling.

I just love those ultra-Parisian entrance lobbies with the vintage tiling.

The end of the school year is fast approaching, and I attended my first end-of-year party (in French, une kermesse) as a parent, twenty years after graduating from high school. Twenty years! I get dizzy just thinking about it, but if I was offered to push a button and go rewind my life to that day, I’m really not sure I would. As Paul Nizan wrote, “I was [sixteen]. I won’t let anyone say that it’s the most beautiful age of life.”*

June Eats and Accomplishments

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