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Ten Year-Old Chefs

If little boys are old enough to have favourite dishes, then they are old enough to cook them.

Mama:  Use that pot to boil this litre of water.

Little C:  Yes mama.

Mama:  This is a small onion.  I peeled it already.  Chop it like this.

Little C:  Yes mama.

Mama:  Chop these three cherry tomatoes.

Little C:  Mama! The water is boiling.

Mama:  Great! Drop one cup of macaroni in the boiling water.  Don’t cover the pot.

Little C: Yes mama!

Mama:  Add a pinch of salt to the boiling macaroni.

Little C:  What’s a pinch mama?

Mama:  Look at my fingers.  See how I pinch the salt?

Little C:  Cool.

Mama:  Here’s another pot.  Add one tablespoon of olive oil.

Little C:  Yes mama.

Mama:  Throw the chopped onions and tomatoes in the olive oil and lower the temperature.

Little C:  Mama, what is a temperature?

Mama:  You must be kidding?  What do you learn in school?

Little C:  Sorry mama.
Mama:  It's O.K.  Temperature is here on this stove. High, medium and low.
Little C:  Thanks mama.

Mama:  This is a strainer.  The macaroni is ready.  Empty it in the strainer. Careful the pot is hot.

Little C:  Yes mama.

Mama:  This is ground beef.  Throw it in the onion and tomato.  Here, add this spice mix. I use it for everything.

Little C:  Yes mama.

Mama:  Sit right here and wait for 10 minutes.

Little C:  Smells good mama.

Mama:  We’ll let the pasta cool a bit then add it to the ground beef.

Little C:  Pasta?  We are cooking macaroni mama.

Mama:  Macaroni and spaghetti are part of the pasta family.  You’ll taste more pasta when we travel to Italy.

Little C:  Italy?  Mama you are the bomb!

Mama:  And I will explode if you burn the food.

Little C:  Sorry mama.

Mama:  Why do your boys call you Little C anyway?  Your name is Cecil.

Little C:  I’m a little chef mama, but I will cook on TV one day.
Teach Little C. about knives and using them safely. Colour is also important.

By:  Nonqaba waka Msimang.


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