Cooking with Kids: Hatching “wide-eyed” Chicks (Deviled Eggs)
Foodie Fun for Kids Encouraging Speech & Creating Yum! Hatching “wide-eyed” Chicks (Deviled Eggs)
These “chicks” take a little prep work, but the actual steps to make them are simple. You can use any deviled eggs recipe you like. We like ours simple— just mayonnaise, a good squirt of mustard and a dash of salt. We don’t like relish in ours so we omitted that ingredient. Any way you choose to make deviled eggs works for this.
Deviled Eggs Ingredients
- Hard boiled eggs, cooled and peeled
- Mustard (1 tbsp)
- Black Olives, cut into slices (or buy sliced olives)
- Baby carrots
- Sharp paring knife
TIP: For easy peel boiled eggs add vinegar to water, boil for 13 minutes. Drain/cool in ice bath.
Parent: Hard boil eggs and peel in advance. We found a recipe called Easy-Peel Boiled eggs, however, we added a dash of salt and about a tablespoon of vinegar to the water prior to boiling (a tip from Grandma).
Parent: Slice baby carrots in half and then slice into quarters.
Parent/Kiddo: Carefully cut carrots into small pieces for the beak Parent: Slice black olives (or use the pre-sliced in a can) to use as “eyes”.
Parent/Kiddo: Slice through the egg about 1/3 of the way up from the bottom (roundest part). Try to reach the beginning of the yolk. This will provide easy access to removing the yolk as well a cap for the top of chick.
Parent/Kiddo: Carefully cut a thin slice off the bottom part of each egg white so that it will stand upright on a plate, taking care not to slice into the yolk. Discard or eat the slice of egg white.
Parent/Kiddo: Remove the yolk into a small bowl. Separate the deeper egg white “bowls” and the “caps” into different piles.
Kiddo: Mash the egg yolk
Parent: To the yolks, add about two tablespoons of mayonnaise, one tablespoon mustard and salt to taste. We don’t have exact measurements. We started out with a small quantity of mayo until we reach the desired consistency.
Parent/Kiddo: Mixed up the yolk with the ingredients, use a small melon ball scoop or spoon to fill an egg white (bottom portion of the hollowed-out egg). Add enough yolk filling so that it sticks out from the top of the egg.
Kiddo: Add carrot piece for beak and olive slices for eyes. Then, place an egg white “cap” on top of the yolk filling and place the finished deviled egg on a platter.
Repeat until you’ve used up all your eggs.
As you fill up the platter you will have what looks like a bunch of eggs that just hatched.
Eat! Talk! Enjoy! (Language tips to help encourage speech with the recipe on pg. 2)
Cooking together is a great way to bond and work on building language skills. Cooking with your child can help build vocabulary, improve following directions, sequence, and build narrative skills. It’s also fun and multi-sensory!
Before beginning the recipe, review the ingredient list with your child. This will help prepare your child as well as build their vocabulary (e.g. egg, olives, carrots, mayonnaise). Review and explore the ingredients one by one. For example, when exploring an egg, discuss how it looks and feels. Talk about how it’s fragile and why. You can ask your child, “Why is an egg so fragile”? Your child can come up with different answers that can help problem-solving and answer “wh” questions. Ask your child, “What is inside the egg and where does an egg come from”?
As you gather your ingredients, review the recipe.Using visuals within the recipe can be beneficial whether your child is a reader or emerging reader (e.g. use photographs, pictures). Using visual supports can help a child follow along with the recipe easier. Take turns and encourage conversation while you are cooking. Discuss the cooking process that will occur. Explain to your child what “boil” means. Watch the water bubble and discuss the temperature of the water and why it bubbles. For variety, use brown and white eggs and talk about the difference in color. You can also use different size eggs and discuss which is smaller, bigger, etc.
After you are done boiling the egg, work on actions such as “peel”, “mash” “cut”, “mix”, etc… As you complete the steps, ask your child to recall the last step or last few steps. This will help your child recall information and improve their narrative skills. If he or she has difficulty, use choices or prompts to help facilitate the correct answer.
Other language concepts targeted can include body parts (e.g. eyes and nose of finished eggs), shapes, colors, and prepositions.
Carryover Picture Books:
Becca Eisenberg is a mother of two young children and a speech language pathologist, author and instructor. Her website, www.gravitybread.com encourages learning time during mealtime. On her website, she writes children’s book recommendations, app recommendations, as well as child friendly recipes with language tips their family.
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This post originally appeared on our March/April 2014 Magazine