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Posted by Katie oGrady

Cooking with Children – A Caribbean Flavour

Little ones love to cook especially if it involves licking chocolate off the wooden spoon. It’s a fantastic way to spend time with your children, it is fun, messy and in fact a great way for them to develop their confidence, educate them on healthy food choices and learn a variety of skills including:

  • Weighing and measuring ingredients incorporates a variety of mathematical concepts from counting to learning about the notion of more and less.
  • Mixing ingredients and observing what happens, discussing the method and seeing the end result teaches about the scientific process.
  • Gaining an appreciation of time by seeing how long recipes take to cook.
  • Boosting creativity in numerous ways from decorating to altering recipes.
  • Reading recipes, discussing them and following instructions are a wonderful way to encourage communication and early literacy.

With the annual Notting Hill Carnival taking to the streets of London at the end of August, Shillah, one of our fantastic chefs, has suggested a few child friendly Caribbean recipes to make, we hope you have fun and find them tasty!


Shillah’s Extremely Scrummy Recipes:

“I love to cook Caribbean style foods as it is all about fun and colour. The family get together, share ideas and dance!”

Reggae – Wraps:
Boneless chicken breast
Olive oil
½ teaspoon ground paprika
2 garlic cloves minced
1 ½ teaspoons fresh ginger grated or ½ ground ginger
Pepper White
Sliced mixed pepper red, yellow and green
Onions sliced
Tomatoes diced

Dice chicken into strips, add spices to chicken, cover and keep in the fridge for an hour. Add olive oil and grill chicken or cook in oven. In a pan with little oil fry onions, peppers, cook until crisp and tender or to your liking. Warm the wraps on a pan, add chicken strips, peppers, onions and diced tomatoes. You can serve with cilantro cream sauce. To make sauce use:
½ cup sour cream
1/8 cup finely chopped cilantro
1g red onions, chopped
2 teaspoons lime juice
A pinch salt and pepper, mix together and serve with wraps

N.B. Add some iceberg lettuce for an extra tasty treat.

Sticky Jerk Salmon With Mango Stew:
2 heaped tbsps Jamaican Jerk paste (add tiny amount for kids to make it less spicy)
2 tbsps clear honey
4 Salmon Fillets
Juice 2 Limes
½ red cabbage, core removed, thinly sliced
1 firm ripe mango, skin removed and sliced
1 red pepper, thinly sliced
6 spring onions thinly sliced
Small coriander leaves

Mix Jerk paste with honey, brush on salmon. Cover for an hour on a lined foil baking tray. Pour a tiny bit of olive oil to grease trays and place salmon bake in oven for 8 – 10 mins until salmon starts to caramelise. Mix honey and lime with cabbage, mango, pepper, spring onion and coriander, toss through serve with salmon For little ones make some herby potato wedges. (Serves 4).

You can use same recipe for Jerk chicken. Cook chicken for longer but serve chicken with plantain chips and homemade coleslaw.

For Plantain chips slice plantains into circles, either spray on olive oil and bake in oven or shallow fry until golden brown.

Mango Fool:
2 Mangos
1 Lemon
2/3 cup whipping cream
5 ounces plain yoghurt
1 tablespoon coconut milk

Put mango pieces in blender and liquidise. Stir the lime into the mango puree and mix well.
Whisk cream in another bowl. Stir in yoghurt and coconut milk, than add mango mixture.
Pour the Fool into bowls or glasses and put in fridge to chill.
Decorate with slices of mango before serving

Tropical Breakfast Smoothie
3 passion fruits
1 banana chopped
1 small mango, stoned and peeled
300ml orange juice
Ice Cubes

Scoop the pulp of the passion fruit into a blender, add the banana, mango and orange juice, puree until smooth top with ice cubes and drink.

Smoothie Ice Cubes:
Blackberries, strawberries, raspberries, passion fruit, mango and any other preferred fruit

Puree fruit, pour in ice cube trays and freeze. Serve with banana, a spoon of plain yoghurt and honey to taste.

Paradise Mango Lemonade:
2 chopped mangos pureed
5 cups cold water
1/2 fresh lime juice
1 ½ cups sugar (dissolved in ½ saucepan of boiling water, keep over low heat)

Mix mango with 5 cups of water, add to dissolved sugar, add lime juice and serve with ice.