a special feature by Yvette Garfield, author & creator Handstand Kids Cookbook Series

No matter what time of the year, kids, cooking and the kitchen all go together….

It seems everywhere you look these days, cooking is geared toward children, whether it is television shows, kitchen gadgets and accessories, or cook books. I often reminisce about my own childhood kitchen with my parents. Growing up, the kitchen was generally an off-limit zone and noted for potential danger. Mom and Dad were the gatekeepers who could grant permission to the intimidating appliances and sweet treats from hidden cupboard shelves, which, not coincidentally, were out of my reach.

My fondest childhood cooking lesson is when my mother taught me to make her legendary cupcakes baked in an ice cream cone (see recipe below). These cupcakes are delicious, of course, but looking back I am amazed by my mom’s creative flair. She was always inventing unusual and often hilarious recipes, like her “One-Eyed French Toast,” where one egg was dropped in the middle of each slice of the toast. Her favorite dessert was “Mud Pie for her Mag Pie (me),” made with loads of coffee ice cream and topped with even more fudge. I always ended up with frosting or some other food covering my face and my Care Bears t-shirt! Making (and eating) dishes with my mom taught me that cooking is fun and creative.

While the cupcakes in a cone generally lasted only minutes after their completion, the memories of cooking with friends and family stay with us for a lifetime. My mom didn’t realize at the time, but she was instilling an appreciation for home cooking.  She taught me basic cooking skills and a deciphering sweet tooth that knew the difference between homemade treats and processed foods. These fun activities were the key that unlocked my future love for food, as well as my career. While kids are overscheduled in activities and lessons, I hope they will have the same opportunity I had to learn their first recipes from their family in their own kitchen.

in-the-kitchen-with-kids-photo-2-cupcakesCupcakes in a Cone Recipe
– courtesy of Arlene Garfield

Preheat the oven to 325 F.

Prepare 1 package of store bought cake mix in a large bowl. (Mom prefers yellow cake).

Take 20 standard ice cream cones and fill them with batter only up to the stem of the cone, as it will rise quite a bit.

Place the cones on a baking sheet and carefully place in the oven for approximately 20 minutes.

Check the batter with a toothpick to make sure that it is fully cooked through.

Let the cones cool for 15 minutes and then frost to look like ice cream. (Mom prefers chocolate frosting with rainbow sprinkles and a few chocolate chips).


For even more imaginative and inspiring recipes, go to  www.handstandkids.com  *Purchase a cookbook or any other fabulous item, and receive 20% discount with the coupon code: grandparentslink

*Yvette Garfield, a law school graduate, had the idea of creating the Handstand Kids on a very long flight back from India. She wanted to bring back cookbooks for her little cousins, but was discouraged when unable to find any for children. She began brainstorming on how to introduce children to the world through food, and launched the Handstand Kids line, the perfect recipe for kids to learn how to cook, with complete cookbooks, utensil kits and aprons, chefs’ hats and mitts for the family to wear. Yvette has worked with various non-profit organizations and the Department of Justice, Children’s Rights Section. She hopes children will be inspired to use their new cooking skills to give back to their own communities. Contact:  yvette@handstandkids.com