Great Cookbooks for Families
Reviewed by Katy Killilea

Gadgetology Harvard Common PressHere’s something completely different: a guide for parents and kids who like to experiment and are ready to push their cooking implements in new directions. With a recipe and craft project for each of thirty-five standard kitchen tools–apple corer, funnel, and flour sifter, for example–this book will have you seeing your batterie de cuisine with new eyes.

After grating cheese for Gadgetology’s “Super Easy Lasagna,” you might grate some old crayons and make the shreds into stained glass. With your salad spinner, you might dry spinach for quesadillas. Or you might prefer to use it to make splashy and colorful spin art. One more irresistible idea for the well-equipped: using a marinade injector, shoot assorted juices or flavor extracts into strawberries or hunks of plain cake and see who can guess the flavors.

Spinart PbwikiThe recipes in this book are simple and have lots of kid appeal (the “Mashed Potato Volcano” is designed to actually erupt before the diners’ eyes), but it is the projects that are wickedly and insanely creative. This is a perfect book for families who like to play in the kitchen. Recommended for kids ages four to ten years old, with parental assistance.

The details:
Gadgetology
By Pam Abrams
2008 Harvard Common Press
$14.95