Summer Camp 2015 Registration is Open

A Little Yumminess Camp Logo

We’re so excited that it’s time to start thinking about our A Little Yumminess Around the World summer camp, one of our favorite parts of the year. Registration is now open and we expect slots to fill up fast, so do sign up right away if you’re interested.  We are almost half-full already from early registration for returning campers with several campers coming back for the third time!!

We’re bringing back our popular “Cooking Around the World” camp for younger kids during which we’ll visit a different country each day and cook our own snacks and lunch. We’ll also have time for some crafts, kitchen science and other food and culture and community service-related activities.  It’s always amazing to see what kids, even this young, can do in the kitchen and how much energy and creativity they bring to the final dishes that we make together. We’re devoting two sessions this summer to a slightly new format for older kids (entering 3rd through 5th). We’ve picked “Great Cities” as our theme and our campers will not only be learning about and cooking food from around the world, they will be planning and executing the menu from start to finish. In addition to hands-on cooking, they’ll have the chance to choose the menu, plan and shop. It’s going to be great fun and we having a blast developing the curriculum.

We’ve put much thought into creating the kind of camp that we’d love to send our own kids to, so we keep our camps small in size (maximum 21 campers) and teach each camp ourselves with the help of our trusted and experienced staff along with a few amazing junior counselors (to find out about our junior counselor program for kids entering 7th grade and up, email us at alittleyum@yahoo.com).

Throughout the week we will also have guest presenters including our favorite folks from Bernal Cutlery who will lead a knife skills session and our dear friend, blogger and self-proclaimed curd-nerd Anya Soltero, who will lead a Cheese 101 session.

Here are basic details for all 3 sessions, please click over to our “camps” page for more information. We hope to see your young, budding cooks this summer!

  • Time: 9am-3pm (early & extended care are not available)
  • Cost: $475 per session ($425 + $50 materials fee, snacks and lunch provided each day)
  • Location: Marin Preparatory School (Diamond at 18th Street in San Francisco)
  • Session 1: 6/22/15 – 6/26/15 –  Entering Grades 3-5, “Great Cities of the World: Paris, Tokyo, Barcelona, Rome, San Francisco” – Click here to register
  • Session 2: 7/27/15 – 7/31/15 – Entering Grades 1-4, “Cooking Around the World: Italy, India, Middle East, Mexico, Hawaii” – Click here to register
  • Session 3: 8/3/15 – 8/7/15 – Entering Grades 3-5, “Great Cities of the World: Paris, Tokyo, Barcelona, Rome, San Francisco” – Click here to register

If none of the sessions work for you this year – please email us at alittleyum@yahoo.com and ask to be put on our mailing list for next year and other events throughout the year.

Yumminess camp collage part 1

 

 

 

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Cacio e Pepe, A Taste of Rome

Cacio e Pepe

Cacio e Pepe collage

Learning how to cook an Italian classic.

 

This is one of those recipes that is so easy it hardly even needs a recipe. It has a list of 3 ingredients (maybe four, but more on that later) and is just only slightly more complicated than boiling pasta. But despite it’s basic-ness Cacio e Pepe one of the most delicious and satisfying pasta dishes ever dreamed up. In fact, when my husband and I were in Rome this last summer we of course made it a point to eat as much great food as possible (no surprise there). Despite the many absolutely amazing meals we had, the one we returned to on our last night (and we were both in total agreement) was a bowl of Cacio e Pepe, a slow-roasted porchetta sandwich, a simple salad and a glass of wine from a little stand down by the Tevere which was set up as part of a summer festival along the river. Last meal in Rome? No contest. Okay maybe dining al fresco by the light of a full moon, bathed in the special magic of one of our favorite cities had something to do with it, but the food really was perfect.  Continue reading

Snack Time: Quick Cheese Straws

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Store bought puff pastry is one of those things that makes cooking so many dishes so much easier.  We always have some in the freezer to turn into a variety of dishes like these portable stuffed puffs we love,  the best homemade chicken pot pie, and tarts of all kinds.  Our latest snack time addition, are these quick cheese straws that the little ones can make almost entirely by themselves.  I am loving that as the kiddo gets older, I can give her a simple recipe and she can work on it by herself.  I am not ready to let her handle the oven, but perhaps over the summer we will make that leap as well….

After the kids are in bed these are great with some bubbles or a cocktail.  A friend of mine makes a yummy version of these with prosciutto. Yum.  Who needs dinner?

Continue reading

Family Cooking Class: Basic Knife Skills and Bibimbap-Inspired Rice Bowls

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We are teaming up with our favorite folks at 18 Reasons and Bernal Cutlery to offer a really fun and engaging parent-child knife skills and cooking class.  There are so few opportunities to take a cooking class with your kids out there, that this should not be missed.

Plus, it is a AMAZING deal – only $55 for 1 adult and 1 child (preferably aged 7-11) pair and includes lunch, a kid’s knife courtesy of Bernal Cutlery and the 18 Reasons Cooking Fundamentals handbook.  If you are an 18 Reasons member – which if you are not – you may want to consider becoming one – the class is only $45!!  We are going to be doing a bunch of classes with 18 Reasons and their programming is mostly ridiculously good, so the membership is incredibly worth it. Continue reading

Cooking with Kiddos: Roasted Mushrooms, Potatoes and Green Beans

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The munchkin and I are hoping to cook more together and I am trying to get Ria involved in making more “real food” as she gets older.  This casserole is a good one to work on with kids who are learning how to use knives.  We practiced the “bridge” and “claw” method of cutting the mushrooms and green beans.  I helped out a little bit with the onion and potato, but next time, I will let her do more and pretty much make the whole dish by herself.

Kids love feeling “grown up” and using knives, and if you watch them closely and teach them the right techniques, they actually do quite well on their own.  We just need to get over our own fears and in my experience, if you trust and empower children, they generally do well (and respect the knife).  Plus, if they make it themselves, they will practically eat anything.

Roasted Mushrooms, Potatoes and Green Beans from Williams Sonoma
Continue reading

A Little Yumminess Around the World Summer Camp 2013

A Little Yumminess Around the World_Summer Camp 2013

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1/29/13– Well folks, we are officially sold out for summer 2013! Thanks everyone for your support — it’s a project we are truly passionate about. Since plans do change, we will keep a wait list, so click here to add your name. If you would like to be on our email list to hear about future classes, camps and events, drop us an email (aittleyum@yahoo.com).

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To all of our friends here in the Bay Area, we’re excited to announce that registration for our “A Little Yumminess Around the World” summer camp is now open. We had such a blast at our inaugural camp last summer at 18 Reasons, that we’re back this year with 2 sessions of cooking, eating and crafting — from Scandinavia, to Argentina, India and points in between. If you’ve got a curious kid, budding chef or young travel buff at home, please click here for all the details and registration.

Some kind words from our 2012 camp:

This camp was fabulous! My daughter a usually very picky eater loved eating what she cooked and it was a fabulous and fun environment to try new things. The “don’t yuck my yum’ motto is one that we still use at our dinner table”

“A Little Yumminess Around the World Cooking camp was rated the best camp of the summer by our 6 year old daughter. I don’t cook often at home so having the opportunity to explore everything from knife skills to rolling sushi was pure joy for our child.”

“I loved the Mexican Chocolate Cookies and hope I can go back to this camp!”

A Little Yumminess Around the World Summer Camp 2013

  • Session 1: June 24-28 — Japan, Mexico, India, Middle East and Scandinavia
  • Session 2: July 22-26 — Thailand, Italy, Morocco, Hawaii and Argentina
  • For 6-8 year olds (entering 1st through 3rd grades)
  • 9am-1pm at Seesaw, Octavia and Gough Streets in Hayes Valley

Hope you can join us! Click here to register.

-Simran & Stacie

A Little Yumminess Camp Collage

Paratha_A Little Yumminess Summer Camp

Luca’s Original Sweet-Tart Fruit Salad

The other weekend, while browsing the farmers’ market, Luca stopped dead in his tracks upon seeing a giant pile of pomegranates. One was cracked open with hot pink seeds tumbling out. He grabbed my arm and said “Can I try that?”. We’ve had pomegranates around the house before, but this is the first time they’ve made a real impression on him. We tasted and after a few moments, Luca gave his thumbs up and offered this perfectly succinct description of the flavor: “the original SweeTart” (referring of course to those candy pellets which show up in his Halloween trick or treat bag). I couldn’t have said it better myself. Honestly, the kid kills me with those haiku-like pronouncements. I wish I had the gift.

Naturally, we bought a few pomegranates and, while we have featured recipes on the blog  for pomegranate granita and jam, we’ve just been enjoying them au natural. I give a small chunk to our little guy and he finds it quite entertaining to sit there and pick out the seeds and pop them into his mouth. If you don’t mind pink hands and juice-stained clothes it’s great fun. Luca, our kindergarten chef, was inspired to create a simple sweet-tart fruit salad that features pomegranate seeds and some of his other favorite ingredients of the moment: clementines and those frozen “pineapple tidbits” you can buy at Trader Joes. [My kids are obsessed with eating the little pineapple chunks right from the freezer].  We’ve been making this fruit salad every night and I have to say it’s quite addictive. The contrast of colors is beautiful, there’s a great balance of sweetness and tartness and the crunch of the pomegranate seeds, softness of the oranges and the pop of cold from the frozen pineapple give it textural complexity. This is a truly refreshing snack or dessert.

Luca’s “Original Sweet Tart” Fruit Salad

(makes enough for 1 kid)

  • 1 seedless clementine, peeled and sectioned
  • 1 handful of pomegranate seeds
  • 1/4 cup of frozen pineapple (1/2″ pieces so you can easily bite through them, or buy “Frozen Pineapple Tidbits” at Trader Joe’s)

Combine the fruit and enjoy!

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Luca and I also took a few minutes to look up the history of the pomegranate and found a few interesting facts:

  • Pomegranates are actually part of the berry family and are native to the area that is modern day Iran.
  • Pomegranates are most commonly enjoyed as a fruit or a juice, but throughout the middle east you’ll also find pomegranate molasses (a syrupy reduction of the juice) that is used to add a tart element to many dishes.
  • In Indian cuisine the seeds are used as a spice called anardana.
  • In Mexico, you’ll find them in a dish called chiles en nogada where their red color represents the red of the Mexican flag alongside the green poblano chiles and the white nogada sauce.