Wednesday, November 5, 2014


Remember your first experience in the kitchen when you were a kid? There's nothing like the smell of something baking in the oven. The intoxicating aroma can send any weary soul into a trance, a delicious imagination that stays until you finally make your first bite. The scent wakes you up like any stimulant, spurring up excitement in your stomach. To a child, a wooden spoon is like a wand that whips up delectable magic at home. 
Recreate happy kitchen memories with your children by teaching them how to bake! More than just whipping something to chew on, it's also a wonderful way to teach, share, and connect. 
Joan Ramirez-Bala of the Fat Mama' Kitchen enjoys bonding time with her 2 daughters over finger-lickin' good batter and messy memories. She says 2 extra little hands makes the task more fun and light.  
"They started as young as 3 years old. They would huddle up in the kitchen, their cheeks resting on the table as they eagerly watched me mix ingredients. Soon, they finally took a hand in baking, mixing and portioning out the batter themselves."
"Kids as young as 3 can help out in simple baking activities such as pouring, stirring, decorating, cutting dough into different shapes and sizes. By the time they reach 10, they've already developed discipline and coordination, and they can pretty much operate electrical equipment. At that age, they have a better grasp and comprehension of the kitchen glossary and the steps involved in each recipe."
Baking is also a fun way for kids to learn and apply math in the real world. Joan says, "They get to learn fraction through measurement of ingredients and division by cutting the dough. It helps develop precision and patience, as well as practice their reading skills through recipe books. Kids get curious about the 'magic in baking' and they get to discover the science behind it by using various ingredients. The whole experience is like learning math, science and reading with a yummy result!"
At home, her daughters have more than enough supply of treats for them to bring to school. Joan finds time in between work to bake snacks for her kids. Sometimes, they even make their own. 
"Now that they're all grown up, they can pretty much choose recipes and bake on their own," shares the proud mom.
As the holidays are fast approaching, orders for baked desserts are sure to pile up at the Fat Mama's Kitchen. Joan simply looks forward to the holiday rush. "Busy days are coming but I have nothing to worry about. If Santa had his elves helping him at work, I've got little hands helping me in the kitchen as well." 
For delectable Christmas gifts and goodies, send in your inquiries and orders to Joan Ramirez Bala on Facebook.
Story published on my newspaper column, Metro Mom.


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