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Young Chefs® Academy presents National Kids Take Over the Kitchen™ (September 13th ) for the 8th year in a row!

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Join Kids and Teens across the globe on September 13th and take over your kitchen!

For the 8th year in a row, Young Chefs® Academy has been empowering Young Chefs across the nation to take over their kitchens!   This year, we hope to see even more kids, teens and families cooking together in their kitchen on September 13th and beyond! 


Beginning Thursday, September 13th, we will be posting a new recipe each month (2nd Friday of the month) along with a skill focus, tips and tricks!  We task every young chef across the globe to join us for the months that follow to take over their kitchen and master the skills along the way!  Each month will build upon each other as we work towards setting them free and let the creative juices flow as we near National Kids Take Over The Kitchen Day 2019!! 


Be sure to stay tuned as we have some exciting things planned beginning with this year's Kids Take Over The Kitchen Day and building into even more exciting plans throughout the next 12 months!


To get started, scroll down to this month's skill where you will find practice recipes, tips, tricks and more!



Whether you use the recipes provided or strike out on your own, be sure to share your culinary creations on our Facebook page or Instagram using the hashtag #KidsTakeOverTheKitchenDay and show your support for bringing families back to the kitchen!

But remember...safety first!  If you're fairly new and have not had the culinary and safety instruction necessary, be sure to have an adult present to be your "Sous Chef" for the day!


Are you ready to take over your kitchen and create lasting memories to last a lifetime?


This Month's Skill Focus is....Knife Skills & Safety!



This month’s recipes have many activities and basic cooking skills for the beginner chef (with equipment supervision)


With that said…first-things-first!  Have an adult with you to supervise.  If possible, use a safety glove any time you are working with sharp objects such as a knife, grater or peeler.


Next, let’s learn how to properly hold a knife and the method we use for cutting ingredients:


how to handle knife


First, make a fist…this is how you grip the handle of the knife.  Your four fingers wrap around the outside of the handle, with your thumb on the inside and over your fingers. The hand that holds the food is called your “guide”hand, and this hand gets to wear your Safety Glove! Always keep your thumb tucked behind your gently curled fingers!  This will help keep those fingers safe!


Now that you have that down, grab a few extra onions and let's start practicing our knife skills!  Visit the "Tips" section below to learn the proper way to slice, dice, chop, mince, and peel!  Once you have that down, really put your skills to the test by trying out this month's delicious recipes at home!


Our first recipe is a delicious Italian Wedding Soup.  While the name suggests this recipe originated in Italy, the name was translated incorrectly.  There is a delicious blend of ingredients to bring full flavor to this dish.

In addition, we’ll learn about mirepoix (pronounced “meer-pwah”).  This centuries-old combination of chopped carrots, celery and onions are used to add flavor to stocks, sauces, soups and other foods.  The proportions are always the same 50% onions, 25% carrots and 25% celery.  When making stock, the mirepoix is ultimately strained out, so it's not important to use great precision when chopping the vegetables.    


And, ALWAYS be sure to follow knife safety practices!

  • Always cut away from your body when using a knife. If not, the knife can slip and cut you.
  • Always use a cutting board. This will protect counter tops from being damaged.
  • Keep knife blades sharp. (ask an adult to help)
  • Keep knives clean, including the handle. A slippery handle can cause the knife to slip in your hand.
  • Never place knives in a sink full of water. Many accidents occur from knives being placed in soapy water where they can't be seen.
  • When washing knives, be sure to keep the cutting edge away from your hands. The same goes for drying them.
  • Always lay knives flat, never on the back or edge.
  • Never try to catch a falling knife. Let it land on the floor and then pick it up.
  • When you are finished using knives, wash them with very warm, soapy water and store in the proper area.
  • Never lay a knife in a drawer with edges up. It must lay flat.
  • If you respect knives and handle them properly, they will help you get the job done quickly.
  • Carelessness can cause severe injury. If you are in doubt, ask an adult to help you.




Be sure to check out the tips below and let us know how they turn out!  Share your creations with us on Instagram (@youngchefsacademy) and Facebook !


Can you guess what our next skill will be next month?  New recipes, tips and tricks will be posted every 2nd Friday of the month, along with some special treats to continue celebrating National Kids Take Over The Kitchen Day...All Year Long!


Before you get started...

Read through your recipe at least once before getting started!
Mise en Place ~ Be sure to have everything you need (ingredients, equipment, prep items necessary,...)
Don't be afraid to change a few things to make it your own!  Keep in mind that this is a lot easier to do when cooking while baking is more precise.


Want a sneak Peek of just a few of the things our Young Chefs Academy students focused on last month during "The Scratch Kitchen!" 


Our young chefs challenge themselves to make home-cooked meals using only fresh, raw ingredients. The Scratch Kitchen came alive! No Shortcuts...just a world of delicious possibilities along the way.  Here are just a few of the focus points from last month:

  • How to prepare root vegetables
  • Why pork tenderloin should be brined?
  • Why you should char tomatoes.
  • What is the reverse method of cooking steak?
  • How to supreme oranges
  • Tips for cooking crepes
  • Skills and techniques, such as:  brining, monte au beurre, searing, whipping, garnishing

Check out one o the recipes made after learning how to prepare root vegetables and how roasting brings out their natural sweetness.  This is a perfect little side dish for the upcoming holiday season,,,Root Mash with Braised Shallots:








Knife Tip #1....




To peel means to pull or strip off the natural outside covering of something.  For example, you'll need to peel the outside of the onion before practicing the the different types of cuts.



Knife Tip #4....




To slice food--start with a sharp knife. Here we are using a chef's knife. To hold yourchef's knife properly, grasp the handle with three fingers and put your forefinger and thumb on opposite sides of the blade.




Knife Tip #2....





A dice is a cube, usually of a vegetable, that ranges form 1/4 inch to 3/4 inch square.



Knife Tip #5....




To mince means to cut food into very small pieces.


Knife Tip #3....




To chop means to cut foods into pieces. This is a larger cut than dice or mince and generally does not need to be uniform. To chop vegetables, first trim the stem and peel if necessary.



Knife Tip Video...



Check out the skill focus and recipes below from the previous months!


Month 1 ~ Measuring Common Ingredients








Recipe from our JuniorChef's class:

Meatball Fricassee 

Month 2 ~ Working with Eggs



About National Kids Take Over The Kitchen Day™

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Why is this initiative so important to us? 


Decline over the years of families sharing meals together which can increase the likelihood of teen drug/alcohol abuse, poor grades and more.

An unhealthy relationship with food due to factors such as portion control and high fat/calorie content from pre-packaged or fast foods leading to more serious issues such as childhood obesity and health related issues.


What can Young Chefs Academy do to make a difference?


As THE premiere cooking school for kids, Young Chefs Academy provides the perfect platform to bring families back to the kitchen.  By harnessing the impact & opportunities available to us, we will empower kids and teens across the globe to play a more active role in the planning, preparation and cooking process.


Our Vision:


Young Chefs ® Academy's mission is to teach the joy and value of cooking to children and teens across the globe.  The vision behind the mission of the "Kids Take Over the Kitchen" campaign is to see kids and teens take their newfound cooking skills as a ticket to independence and self sufficiency as they grow into adults.  By empowering kids with these skills, they can:


  • Take part in increasing the likelihood of families sharing more meals together;
  • Learn to use fresh, sustainable ingredients while expanding their food palate;
  • Be among those who want to play an integral role in decreasing childhood obesity and other health-related issues by choosing more home-cooked meals as opposed to high calorie/high fat menus found at fast food establishments;
  • Use these skills to become more independent, self sufficient, and confident human beings;
  • Develop skills that will last a lifetime whether it's for personal reasons or to pursue a professional trade.

The Results:


  • Developing a stronger family unit while empowering kids to break the cycle of today's fast food society,
  • Promote a healthier relationship with food,
  • Bring in a larger variety of natural ingredients to aid in expanding food palates and healthier menu alternatives through ownership.
  • Encourages individuality, responsibility, teamwork and self-confidence
  • Brings families together by creating the opportunity for families to grow closer, and as studies show, thereby increasing the probability of better grades, responsible social choices, avoidance of drug and alcohol abuse
  • Decrease in childhood obesity and other health related issues by encouraging home-cooked meals as opposed to regular diet of high calorie/high fat found at fast food establishments.

Kids and teens CAN make a difference!


Working with "younger chefs"


Need a little recipe inspiration for your younger chefs?  Try some of the recipes from our "What's For Dinner" recipe box below to help get them more involved in the cooking process!  There's lots of activities they can do to lend a hand, such as:
  • Help gather ingredients
  • Washing and drying fruits and veggies
  • Learning basic skills such as:  how to crack an egg, measuring wet & dry ingredients, rolling/kneading dough, mixing/whisking/folding ingredients,...
  • Being involved in the planning process for the weekly meals
  • Visiting the local farmer's market and trying fresh, local ingredients
  • Learning kitchen safety practices

Once your youngest chefs have mastered some of the basics, begin introducing them to some more advance skills and practices (with adult supervision, of course!), such as:

  • Knife safety
  • Stovetop and oven safety
  • Using more advanced kitchen appliances
  • Playing a more active role in the planning of meal and preparation

From there, children can really start to tackle more advanced skills and techniques like those we'll be learning this month!