Monday, June 5, 2023

Today's read... Spaghetti! An Interactive Recipe Book by Lotta Nieminen

Today's read my awesome way to start the week. But then, I'm a fan of eating fresh food (or at least, semi-fresh...or many not so fresh ones, too, but we'll not really mention that. Right?). Plus, creating meals from scratch is a skill I deem as important...that's thanks to my mother, who always cooked from scratch because of financial reasons (I had six siblings). 

My younger son (who blows me away with his cooking skills...we're talking even international cuisine with huge attention to details) claims that he doesn't like cooking very much (I was shocked when he said this!). He explained that he doesn't enjoy cooking, but he loves to eat, and he loves to eat 'good' food. In his opinion, the best way to guarantee that is to know how to cook it himself. 

Now, if his attitude only carried into the clean-up afterwards... But I'll pay the price for anyone who cooks for me.

Now that I've rambled on, it's time to hit today's read because I bet it will encourage listeners out there to take the first steps in creating their own delicious meals.

An Interactive Recipe Book
by Lotta Nieminen
Phaidon Press
Board Book
16 pages
ages 3 to 5

Cook pasta from scratch inside this interactive recipe book – fry, simmer, boil, drain, grate and more! A simple but accurate recipe takes young readers through the steps of cooking spaghetti, from chopping onions to serving up a plate of steaming hot pasta with tomato sauce, while the interactive novelty features invite them to participate in the process ... without any chance of spilling anything. Move the tab up and down to add the onions and garlic, lift the flap to open the can of tomatoes, pull the tab to bring the water to a boil, use the punch-out fork to twist some spaghetti onto your fork to taste, and more. One hundred percent adult-free, danger-free, and mess-free – whether you are cooking outside or inside this book, spaghetti has never been so independent!

GOODREADS   /   B&N   /    AMAZON 


What's better than eating spaghetti? Cooking it and enjoying your own creation, and these pages invite listeners to to just that.

This is a board book for the younger readers out there and hits upon a well-loved topic—spaghetti. It begins with a display of the ingredients needed and utensils involved. These are portrayed close together with the identifying name right near by in the same color (basil's font is green, etc). Step-by-step, the reader follows the process of cooking spaghetti. The sauce is created with canned tomatoes and spices, so young readers do get a first impression of really making something from scratch.

The illustrations are simple, direct, a little blocky, and make the basic steps clear. The text is concise, easy to understand, and keeps everything clear without adding more than necessary. So, listeners do stay on track. I did find some visual moments a teensy-tiny bit jumbled (once or twice), but gathering everything together and cooking can be this way, at times.

The 'interactive' side of this book occurs in that it encourages adults to join their young listeners to create spaghetti together. It supports word recognition, encourages the skill of following directions, introduces basic cooking knowledge/skills, and leads to interactive activities and social skills. For a tiny book, it packs a punch.

I do have to add...and this made me chuckle for side reasons...there is not a warning concerning the need for an adult when cooking, cutting and such. Not that I believe it's necessary (the intended audience couldn't read that on their own, anyway). But since I do know some young readers, who are more than adventurous enough to try doing something on their own, I'll add that adults should watch out and keep an eye on those more determined readers. 

After reading this, only one last phrase hits my mind: Bon Appetit!

And here she is...

Lotta Nieminen is an illustrator, graphic designer, and art director from Helsinki, Finland, running her own New York-based studio. In 2014, she was nominated for Forbes magazine’s annual 30 Under 30 list. In 2010, she received the Art Directors Club Young Guns award. Her client list includes Google, The New York Times, and Vanity Fair, among others.

No comments: