Chef Gino Campagna shows kids that you don’t have to be a culinary expert (or a grown-up) to make delicious and nutritious meals.
Do you like to cook? I do! When I was younger my dad, a professional bread baker, showed me how to make bread look like alligators. It was so much fun and I was thrilled when my alligator came out of the oven and my family took a bite out of the alligator’s tail!
We also had huge pizza parties with homemade pizzas! My dad let me help roll out the dough on a massive sheet pan while my mom handed us the yummy toppings for us to put on the pizza. That was the best pizza I ever had in my life!
Now that I’m a mom I’ve made sure to cook with my sons. Whenever they want to try a new food or dessert, we work on it together. Whether they want to create a cool curry dish or a tasty vegan banana cream pie we look for a recipe we think we can handle, make sure we have all the ingredients and get cooking.
Most of the time our creations turn out really well, but not always, and that’s okay too. Now that my sons are older, they surprise us with delicious dinners and desserts, and they are really proud that they made it themselves.
Here is the recipe for our favorite Vegan Banana Cream Pie from namelymarly.com.
Ingredients for Golden Cookie Crust:
- 24 golden Oreos or vanilla cream cookie of your choice
- 4 tablespoons vegan butter dairy-free margarine, sliced
Ingredients for Banana Cream Pie Filling:
- ½ cup sugar
- ⅓ cup cornstarch (see notes)
- ¼ teaspoon salt
- 1½ cups vegan evaporated milk (see notes)
- 1 cup plant milk vanilla flavored
- 12 oz container of firm silken tofu drained
- 2 tablespoons vegan butter dairy free margarine
- 1 tablespoon nutritional yeast flakes
- 2-3 bananas peeled and sliced
- Coconut Whipped Topping
Instructions for the Golden Crumb Crust:
Place the Golden Oreos in a food processor. Pulse for a few seconds until the cookies are broken up into smaller pieces.
Add the vegan butter. Pulse again until the cookie crumbs until a still course, but even consistency develops. I like a consistency about the size of large grains of sand.
Press the crust into an eight or nine-inch pie pan, pushing firmly against the side. It helps if you use a measuring cup to press the crust against the pan. Refrigerate for about an hour to set.
Instructions for the Banana Cream Pie Filling:
Mix sugar, cornstarch and salt in the bottom of a medium-sized saucepan. Add the milks and stir until combined.
Place the saucepan over medium heat and bring to a boil, stirring occasionally. Cook until the mixture thickens. Do not worry about lumps. We’ll take care of that in a minute.
Place the silken tofu, two tablespoons vegan butter and nutritional yeast flakes in a food processor. Pulse for several seconds until the mixture becomes very smooth. Remove the lid and push some of the contents down to the bottom and then pulse again. Add the pudding mixture to the food processor and pulse again until all the ingredients are combined and any lumps that may have formed while cooking are gone. Set this aside and allow it to cool a little.
Once the pie filling is mostly cooled, remove the pie crust from the fridge and pour about half of the pie filling into the pie crust. Top this with a layer of sliced bananas. Pour the remaining pie filling over the sliced bananas. (Depending on what size of pan you used, you might have a little of the pudding leftover. Lucky You!) Place in the fridge to set for at least an hour, preferably two before serving.
Once your Banana Cream Pie is set, remove it from the fridge, cover it with large dollops of the Coconut Whipped Topping and add additional slices of banana on the top. Enjoy!
For great ideas on how to get started in cooking, check out these awesome books from Carnegie Library of Pittsburgh!
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Simple, healthy, delicious dishes for children and parents to make together.
Offers easy-to-follow cooking instructions for kids.
Good Housekeeping has created the perfect cookbook for kids of all ages eager to step in the kitchen. It features more than 100 delicious, fail-safe recipes from burgers and pizzas to salads and cookies accompanied by tempting photographs and basic kitchen and cooking how-tos.
For each month of the year discover recipes for fun, new dishes and twists on old favorites, weird-but-true food facts, profiles on “foodie ” people, plus activities and challenges you can do by yourself or with friends. You can also check out this title as eBook on OverDrive/Libby or as eBook on Hoopla.
With her newest book, Chef Eliana inspires kids, teens, and families to embrace seasonal cooking and to use fresh, local ingredients when possible.
This vegetarian cookbook for kids offers up a range of more than 50 dishes for breakfast, lunch, dinner and snack time.