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Green cooking for kids: healthy food that's good for the planet

Green cooking for kids
Is your child a future eco-foodie? Learn to cook healthy sweet or savoury crêpes, veg-peel crisps and apple and ginger flapjacks with an extract from Green Kids Cook, a sustainable cooking and living guide for kids from cookery writer and teacher Jenny Chandler.

​Buckwheat Crêpes

Galettes de Sarrasin are from Brittany in northwest France. You can eat them with any sweet or savoury fillings, just as you would with any pancake. Once you’ve really cracked the recipe, try making them into traditional egg-filled parcels – the perfect brunch dish.

Ingredients (makes 6 large or 8-10 smaller pancakes):
100g/3⁄4 cup buckwheat flour
3 tbsp plain flour
1 large egg
200ml / generous 3⁄4 cup milk (dairy or plant)
200ml / generous 3⁄4 cup water
a large pinch of salt
2–3 tbsp butter, rapeseed oil, or other vegetable oil, for frying

​Veg-Peel Crisps

As well as being insanely good to eat, vegetable skins have high concentrations of nutrients and fibre – basically, they’re loaded with goodness. Once you’ve tasted these crisps, you’d have to be mad to ever throw out your veg peelings again.

Ingredients (makes 4 servings):
400g/14oz vegetable peelings, such as potato, carrot, parsnip or celeriac
2 tbsp extra-virgin olive oil

Apple and Ginger Flapjacks

Flapjacks are great for a pick-me-up after a good walk or as a sweet bite in a packed lunch. Rolled oats make firmer flapjacks but for a crumbly texture then jumbo oats are delicious, too.

Ingredients (16 servings):
125g / generous 1⁄2 cup butter
125g / 2⁄3 cup light brown Muscovado
2 small apples (use dessert rather than cooking apples)
4cm piece of fresh ginger
250g / 2 1⁄2 cups rolled or jumbo oats
50g / 1⁄3 cup sultanas
2 tbsp pumpkin seeds

Not-so-fantastic plastic

Plastic makes our lives so easy; we can walk out of our front door empty handed and head to the store where we can snap up a plastic bottle of water, a plastic box of sandwiches and a bag of crisps, then carry our shopping home in a plastic bag, without a thought. The problem is that plastic doesn’t just disappear – it takes hundreds of years to break down and in the meantime we are filling our oceans with a dumper truck’s worth of plastic garbage every MINUTE!

Pollution solution – how to ditch the plastic habit

  • Carry a reusable bottle when you’re out and about, then look out for water fountains or ask in a cafe if you can top it up.
  • Always take a reusable bag shopping with you – you could even make your own.
  • Buy loose fruit and veg from smaller shops and markets or make a stand in the supermarket by leaving everything in plastic right there on the shelf.
  • Take empty containers with you to fill up in the refill shops or zero-waste stores that are popping up in lots of our towns and cities.
  • There are loads of fun, hard-wearing reusable food containers out there, so take a packed lunch or picnic with you when you’re out and about. If you want a taste of street food, buy from the good guys who use recyclable packaging.
  • Cook from scratch – all those ready-meals and takeaways don’t just cost more money; with their piles of plastic packaging, they cost the planet too.

More green cooking and making ideas for kids

If you've enjoyed this extract from Green Kids Cook by Jenny Chandler, invest in the whole book!

Cool Kids Cook author, cookery writer and teacher Jenny's new title encourages children aged 7+ (and younger kids with grown-up supervision), to learn how to eat well, how to look after themselves and think about the planet at the same time. Including more than 50 easy and adaptable recipes and packed with information, tips and crafting projects to help families become more eco-friendly, Green Kids Cook offers the next generation of foodies everything they need to create a healthier future for themselves and the environment.

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