Anyone who knows me well knows that I miss a lot of aspects of homeschooling. They also know that I have the utmost appreciation for teachers, because I know how challenging it can be to teach a half a dozen kids who you know intimately and they are up to the challenge of taking on 30(ish) children every day who start out the school year as strangers.
I greatly appreciate teachers and teaching teams that make learning more than just a dull checklist of requirements for the kids to pass off.
I also appreciate things that help my children branch out a bit.
Taylor is a pretty typical 12 year old boy. And as such he really enjoys graphic novels.
(I'm still baffled at the attraction there, but what do I know?)
In effort to get seventh graders to branch out a bit, the English teachers at our middle school do what they call Reading Bingo. Instead of assigning specific books for this unit, the kids have a bingo card and they must achieve bingo by reading the genres in their chosen row, with extra credit for blackout.
One of the options is a cookbook!
No, you don't have to read the whole thing, but you must read through a specified number of recipes and then make one of them.
You know I adore this.
It just so happens that something not so typical about my 12 year old son is that he knows his way around the kitchen. The boy is a foodie in training. Above all, the kid can bake! Which you should also know I love. Seriously, seriously love.
I'm still reconciling the fact that the kid took the cookie recipe I'm known for and somehow makes them just a little bit better.
Round two of reading bingo was capped off with the cookbook category again. And he wanted an introduction to cheesecake. Be still my heart.
Being the wise soul that he is, he chose a cookbook that includes some of my recipes. Good boy.
He decided on Chocolate Chip Cheesecake.
One catch though-my recipe uses an Oreo cookie crumb crust and we were all out of Oreos. Dang.
Time for a little improv.
I created a recipe for a chocolate shortbread crust and sent him to work.
He is always gets absolutely everything out before he starts.
Completely Ah-mazing. I will never use the Oreo crust again.
He paid close attention to the "add gradually while mixing" instructions as we discussed the magic of appropriately whipping the cream cheese.
And the artist in him was very picky about placing the top chocolate chips in perfect proximity to each other.
The finished product-not too shabby for a first cheesecake.
Yes, unfortunately we got the cracking, which I haven't experienced with this one before. Next time I will teach him the art of the water bath and fix that.
The good news is that it tasted completely fabulous.
But really, how can you go wrong with chocolate chip cheesecake?