Cooking Camp: Best of NYT Cooking, 2017 version

Last week A and I taught a cooking camp for kids age 10-15. It was the second year we have taught together, and the third year I have been involved in this cooking camp program. Most of the kids were 10-13 years old, a great age for cooking together. We developed the curriculum around the best recipes from the New York Times cooking site, using the 2016 list (since we are only 1/2 way through 2017, that list has not been posted yet). Each day we had a main dish, a salad/pasta, and a dessert. Two of our recipes were slow cooker recipes and one dessert took two days. Here was the plan we used:

Monday:

Skewered Chicken with Peanut Sauce

Lemon Drizzle Cake

Kale-Romaine Caesar Salad

Mississippi Roast (slow cooker)

Tuesday:

Eat Mississippi Roast

Make curd for Lemon Angel Food Cake with Preserved Lemon Curd

Summer Berry Buckle (with peaches, nectarines and plums)

Creamy Corn Pasta with Basil

Wednesday:

Bake cake and assemble Lemon Angel Food Cake with Preserved Lemon Curd

Chicken Enchiladas with Salsa Verde

Corn Salad with Tomatoes, Feta and Mint

Thursday:

Crunchy Berry Almond Crumble

Weeknight Fancy Chicken and Rice

Tomato and Pomegranate Salad

Vaguely Vietnamese Slow Cooker Pork Tacos (slow cooker)

Friday:

Prepare slaw and eat Vaguely Vietnamese Slow Cooker Pork Tacos

Salted Caramel Brownies

One-Pot Spaghetti with Cherry Tomatoes and Kale

Fresh Mint and Ginger Lemonade (not NYT, but we had a ton of mint left over!)

Notes:

  • Students really like the Skewered Chicken with Peanut Sauce, and it was easy.
  • Lemon drizzle cake had too much lemon drizzle
  • Kale-Romaine Caesar Salad was a winner, learned how to poach an egg in the microwave
  • Mississippi Roast was also a winner, made one batch as a group project
  • Preserved lemon curd was amazing, and it was very fun to make the angel cake from scratch
  • Summer Berry Buckle was ok, need to emphasize keeping it light and fluffy
  • Students really liked the Creamy Corn Pasta with Basil, and it was super easy. Would be great with farmers market corn!
  • We like our family chicken enchiladas better than this recipe, using Hatch green chili enchilada sauce
  • Feta cheese was a little strong for the corn salad, but the recipe was very easy. Corn kernels everywhere!
  • Did not like strawberries in the Crunchy Berry Almond Crumble, but blackberries, raspberries and blueberries all good.
  • Would use thighs for the Weeknight Fancy Chicken and Rice, recipe could also use more spice.
  • Tomato and Pomegranate salad was easy, although poms are hard to find in the summer. Would be great with farmers market tomatoes!
  • Vaguely Vietnamese Slow Cooker Pork Tacos were probably the best recipe all week. Very easy in the slow cooker, definitely worth repeating. Made one batch as a group.
  • Salted Caramel Brownies turned out to be tricky because of the caramel. Should have done this one as a group, we ended up with two burned batches of caramel which in the end was fine, because we also ended up with two full batches of brownies which was more than enough.
  • One Pot Spaghetti: 1 quart = 4 cups. Remember that!