I know Lizzie from Little Kitchen Magicians and have been looking for a chance to take my grandchildren to one of her cookery classes for some time. Most of them are west of Truro but I spotted this one at Devoran Village Hall on a Sunday (a collaboration between Lizzie and Taor from Potluck Cornwall), so I booked right away.
All of my grandchildren aged 4-11 can cook. Their parents and I have encouraged them to join in with food preparation from an early age and any rainy days elicit a response, ‘Rainy days are baking days’, as it is my default activity when it’s not much fun to play outdoors.
Being able to cook is an important life skill. It helps children develop motor skills, builds food awareness, basic chemistry and can encourage less adventurous eaters to try new foods. I rue the day that cookery classes were taken off the school timetable and find it incredibly sad that some children grow up without basic cookery skills in adulthood.
We arrived at the lovely Devoran village hall to find the tables laid out and Lizzy busy whisking eggs. There were about 12 children taking part and as usual I was the only adult with four to look after! We set about making a chocolate yule log, very apt for the festive season.
Our tasks involved weighing and measuring flour, sugar and butter. We had to cream the chocolate butter icing and whisk up the vanilla cream. Wilf and Megan were selected to demonstrate egg cracking as they were the oldest and had done it loads of times before.
Whisking the eggs and sugar for eight minutes involved an electric whisk and supervision! The last stage was gently folding in the flour and cocoa before tipping the mixture into our Swiss roll tin, lined with greaseproof paper.
Each tin was carefully labelled with the owner’s name and placed in the oven to cook.
Lizzie had carefully organised a table loaded with ingredients (and sweets, to my lot’s delight!) for making a Christingle candle to keep the children entertained while the cakes were cooking.
The cakes came out of the oven and were tipped upside down onto greaseproof paper, dusted with icing sugar, then carefully rolled up to form Swiss rolls and left to cool. When cool they were gently unravelled and spread with vanilla cream, then rolled again to be coated with chocolate buttercream. My lot loved coating the cake with the chocolatey icing and I noticed lots of finger licking going on!
I was very impressed by the finished cakes. They looked and tasted fabulous. We all had a really enjoyable and entertaining few hours and the children all said they would like to do more. Lizzy was great with the children, friendly but firm, and she really encouraged them to do all the tasks for themselves. Her passion for cookery shines through – we will definitely be joining her again soon!
About Little Kitchen Magicians
Little Kitchen Magicians is a mobile/pop up cookery school, offering fun, educational workshops for children & their families in Cornwall. The workshops are suitable for children aged 2-11. All the equipment is provided, including ingredients, aprons, recipe sheets and arts/craft materials, so all you need to do is turn up and get ready to cook.
Workshops are limited to 12 children max and cost £10.50 per child (advance booking is essential). This was their Spring 2019 schedule of workshops at Heartlands – to enquire or book about the current schedule of workshops just get in touch with Lizzie Heath on 07968 606580 or email [email protected]
Don’t forget that if you’re staying at Bosinver, you can borrow Nanny Pat’s baking box which has all the equipment you need to whip up a storm in the kitchen.