Muddy MasterChef

Dandelion upside-down cake

As MasterChef on tv has just reached its climax, it is now over to us to carry on cooking up the culinary delights – in the mud kitchen. Only your imagination is the limit – herby potato soup, fish and chips, burgers, chocolate cake… You can go as posh or down-to-earth as you like!

All you need is couple of resources and you are away; if you would like some ideas on how to set up a mud kitchen, have a look at our previous post. Any kind of dishes, cupcake cases, pans or pots are great of course but if you haven’t got those, any plastic tubs, small planks of wood or even bricks will do.

You can get the whole family involved; I always love activities where it’s a level playing field between adults and children rather than the adults having some advantage through skills or previous experience. It is very easy to lose ourselves through mud play – it can almost be meditative – so just get your hands dirty and join in.

Here are some ideas:

  • Make it a collaborative experience where all are cooking together, or a cook off with everyone making their own dishes (without having a winner at the end). Each of you could be responsible for one dish – starter, main, pudding?
  • Use whatever you can find – sticks, stones, flowers, sawdust, mud…
  • Herbs make a fab addition to any muddy meal as they not only look great but also add some lovely smells. It is the perfect opportunity to learn about herbs as they are explored with different senses.
  • Add water to the list of ingredients which, again, adds another level of learning.
  • Use old-fashioned scales to weigh ingredients.
  • Write a menu – what is on the card today?
  • Set up a restaurant/cafe.
  • Thinking about this current time of online connections, you could get other members of your family (grandparents, cousins…) or friends/other families involved in a cook off.

It is amazing how much learning can be ticked off by making mud pies – there are oodles of opportunities for maths, English, design, collaborative working, science… But most importantly, it is fun!

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