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Simple Meals Homeschoolers Can Make & Share

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When a dear friend’s mother became ill this past fall, our family did what it does best in difficult situations: we cooked meals for her family. And when she passed away, our eldest daughter immediately baked a batch of brownies for the family. Having homemade meals can be such a comfort for families struggling with illness or shut-in over the winter months. The best part is that our children could make these meals with little to no supervision.

One of the best parts of cooking is that math and reading skills can be strengthened in a fun way. Cooking requires the chef to read the ingredients, which means a new word or words might be encountered. A recipe can often be halved or doubled, which provides children some valuable “real world” experience with multiplication, division, fractions, and measurements.

There might also be the need to use conversions for the measurements, as standard measurements differ between countries. Cooking can also lead to conversations about science and why certain ingredients create certain outcomes. Of course there is also the wonderful benefit of learning how to provide food for yourself and your family.

Below are two of the recipes we have made and shared.

Western Omelette Casserole

The Western Omelette Casserole is an easy dish to assemble and is appropriate for kids just beginning in the kitchen. For younger chefs, purchase pre-diced frozen onions and peppers (or prep beforehand). Liquid eggs can be used as well for children that are not quite ready for cracking eggs (or again, you can prep beforehand). Older children who are more comfortable in the kitchen can practice their knife skills dicing onions, peppers (and even the ham if you purchase it in a larger piece). Substitutions can be made to make the dish vegetarian or dairy free.

Western Omelette Casserole

Serves 4

● 8 eggs (or 2 cups liquid eggs/egg substitute)

● 1 cup milk (can substitute rice or almond milk)

● ½ teaspoon salt

● 8 ounces diced cooked ham (or substitute more onions & peppers for a vegetarian dish)

● ½ cup shredded cheddar cheese (or dairy free cheddar cheese)

● ½ cup finely chopped onion

● ½ cup finely chopped green or red bell pepper (or a mix)

● ½ cup southern style hash brown

Instructions

1. Preheat the oven to 350. In a large bowl, beat eggs, milk, and salt together. Stir in ham, cheese, onion, hash browns and peppers.

2. Pour egg mixture into a greased 8-inch-square baking dish.

3. Bake for 45 minutes to an hour; until eggs are cooked and omelette is set.

4. Cut into squares and serve with toast

Kielbasa Noodle Casserole

The Kielbasa Noodle Casserole is another fairly simple dish that is primarily comprised of pre-packaged ingredients that don’t require a lot of preparation. Frozen chopped onions can be used and celery is soft enough that a younger child can cut it with a butter knife. Younger cooks will need some help with boiling the noodles and cutting the kielbasa, but older children should be able to handle it on their own. This also is a good opportunity to show kids how to safely use a can opener if they have never used one. Substitutions can be made to include vegan kielbasa or fresh ingredients for the pre-packaged if that better suits your family’s needs.

Kielbasa Noodle Casserole

Serves 4

● 1 Kielbasa (12 oz – 16 oz) sliced into ½ rounds

● 1 Bag coleslaw mix (or 3 cups of fresh shredded cabbage)

● 1/2 cup diced onion

● 1 stalk celery, diced

● 1 Tbsp canola oil

● 1/2 Cup petite diced tomatoes in sauce (or one small ripe tomato finely diced)

● 2 Cups uncooked Egg Noodles

● 1/2 tsp seasoned salt

● Coarse ground mustard (optional)

Instructions

1. Preheat oven to 350. Boil a large pot of water and cook noodles according to directions on package. Drain and set aside.

2. In a large bowl, add the onion, celery, coleslaw mix , seasoned salt, diced tomatoes, canola oil and kielbasa.

3. Add the egg noodles and toss. Pour into a greased 9×13 pan. Bake for 30 minutes.

4. Serve with the mustard, if using.

We hope these recipes inspire you and your homeschooler to make and share through food.

 

Written by Michelle & James Martin

Michelle Martin was born into a musical family and has been teaching music for over 20 years. Besides teaching piano and voice, Michelle is a performer, a choir director, a writer, a composer, and a homeschool mom. Most recently she has published three music curricula through Schoolhouse Teachers. Music has always been a passion for Michelle, and she believes exposing a child to music is just as important as learning math or science. Michelle lives with her husband, Jim, two daughters, Zoe and Eva, and a myriad of furry and aquatic friends.

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"Train up a child in the way he should go and when he is old, he will not depart from it" (Proverbs 22:6).
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