It takes all kinds in a kids cooking class. Or perhaps this year’s group of students in my after-school crew were a special one.
There was the Know-It-All.
The student who knew before we were cooking what it was we were making, the steps involved without reading the instructions, and whether she would like our dish or not– before tasting it.
The I Can Do It.
As I explain recipes and steps this student will request that I, “Stop Stacey, I can do it.”
But not everyone knows what to do.
“But I can do it.”
So I would explain to the rest of the class while he would move on (incorrectly), but you know, recipes are suggestions. [Perhaps I emphasized that too often.]
The Gross… Can I Have More.
“I saw what we’re making today, it’s going to be gross…It doesn’t even have meat in it.”
You haven’t even tried it! You always say that. — and his classmates would join in: “It’s true! You say that and then you eat, like, all of what we’ve made!”
And what happens? We make the dish and he comes back — almost every time — for seconds, thirds… until it’s gone.
The Timid Eater.
So what do you think?
“I dunno,” she whispers the secret, “I think it’s good…I think it’s my favorite.” And she looks down, hair flopping to cover her face.
The Flip Flopper.
At the beginning of the year everything was disgusting: Sweet potatoes?
“I hate those.”
“Blegh, it’s green, disgusting.”
Ev-er-y-thing was inedible. Slowly she turned around — perhaps too far when she deemed me a jerk a few weeks back. But now?
“Sweet potatoes?! These are like my favorite. I liked those sweet potato biscuits the best.”
“Kale!? I love kale! I’m going to eat kale chips all the time.”
“Carrots? These patty things are better than vegetables!”
There are still others of course.
The Class Clown.
The Chocolate and Cheese Hater. [I know, sacrilegious.]
The Dairy Scorner.
The Illegible Note Taker.
By this point I can almost predict what each will say before it is said, or what they will think of the final dish.
As for these Carrot Zucchini Patties?
All the students assumed their usual roles, but the verdict across the board were beyond expected. I knew these were tasty, but I hadn’t expected such rave reviews. The Flip Flopper as noted, proclaimed these vegetable-based patties to be “better than vegetables.” Others suggested it “better than pizza.” [I don’t necessarily agree with that comment.] Another deliberated that while, “these are better than fries and chocolate chip cookies, they are not better than doughnuts.”
I fed them known of these answers — just the patties. Then asked for their thoughts. So now I offer these to you and find out what you and your own think. I bid you to go forth and make vegetables that taste better than vegetables.
Carrot Zucchini Patties
2 scallions, sliced thin
2 carrots, shredded
1 zucchini, shredded
2 small to medium-sized cloves garlic, minced
1/2 a lime, juiced
1/2 cup whole wheat bread crumbs
1/4 cup cilantro leaves
1/4 teaspoon sea salt
2 tablespoons olive oil
Place all ingredients except olive oil in a bowl. Mix to evenly combine. Warm olive oil on a skillet over medium-high heat. Use a 1/4 cup scoop, pressing batter firmly into scoop, then flipping onto skillet. Use a spatula to press flat. Cook about 3 minutes to brown. Flip, cook another 3 minutes. Serve warm.
This recipe can be served with applesauce, sour cream, or guacamole on the side, a sunny egg over the top, with a spritz of lime, or soy sauce, as is- or however else you dream it up.