Probably the most difficult aspect of my cooking club at the Crestmont Boys and Girls is balancing between meals that are simple enough for young children to be able to do, yet complex enough that there is enough things for the kids to do to keep them busy. It is a very fine line to walk. The whole purpose of my cooking club is to be able to provide them with easy recipes they can duplicate on their own at home when they are left to fend for themselves for dinner. However, if they are too simple they get restless while we are cooking, and then I have to deal with bored kids running around the kitchen while I am showing one person how to cut onions and another how to saute chicken.
Today for cooking club we made chicken salad sandwiches. This was a good type of recipe to do with a big group of young kids because it involved a lot of chopping vegetables into tiny pieces, which they dove into full steam. One thing I have found out about adolescent boys is they love to use knives, and as long as you supervise adequately you can keep them focused for a pretty good amount of time. I was also lucky today because one of the older kids came in to help, so he cooked the chicken and worked with some of the younger kids so I barely had to watch them and could focus my attention on my 7 year-old trouble makers.
All in all it was a very simple recipe, pretty much your standard chicken salad sandwich. And the kids really seemed to like it, which is great in a recipe like this that has so many vegetables.