Vegging Out at the Y (Part 2)

You asked for it and you got it. The Vegging out at the Y for preschoolers was such a hit. There were 70 people/kids who joined the fun. The biggest request of all the feed back was to please have a similar program for older kids. Thanks to the YMCA being on board, we are going to do it. We are gearing it towards the kinder-3rd/4th grade kids. Mark your calendars for Thurs., Nov 4th at 3:30 -5 for a fun and tasty time for all. Recipes will not only be tasty but nutritious as well. Apple sauce, Toasted Pumpkin Seeds, and Reindeer Munch. Plus as a wonderful bonus the kids will plant a seed to take home and grow their own veggie with Landscape designer, Dawn Benander of Earthly Delights. So pile into the car with a few friends and head on over to the Crescenta Canada Y.

Apple Sauce

This is a great treat for the lunch box or as an after school snack. My kids even eat it for breakfast. If you have never had homemade apple sauce, you must make this recipe. It is super easy and super delicious. Of coarse it is best to make this in the fall when the apples are in their peak of sweetness. In my cooking class we use the rotary apple peeler for the red apples and the carrot peeler for the yellow apples. Just to give the kids a chance to peel with both kitchen tools. A good thing about using a crock pot is that it cooks without you even being home. But also, the house smells delicious and cheery. A wonderful autumn smell.

Hardware- rotary apple peeler or carrot peeler, knife, cutting board, crockpot or pot with lid, teaspoon, small bowl, wooden spoon, electric blender, big bowl, dinner plate, oven mitt, dish towel.

Software- 6 red delicious apples, 6 golden delicious apples, ground cinnamon, sugar, water


  • Using either the rotary peeler or a carrot peeler, peel the skin off the apples.
  • Place them in the bowl of water.
  • Lay the plate on top to keep the apples submerged in water. This will prevent air from touching your apples. So your apples won’t turn brown. A process called oxidation.
  • Using your knife and cutting board, cut the apples off the core by cutting around the core.
  • Be sure to put the cut apple slices back into the water.
  • When all your apples have been peeled and sliced, put them in the big pot with 2 cups of water.
  • Meanwhile in a small bowl mix together 3 Tablespoons of sugar with 1 Tablespoon of cinnamon.
  • Stir them together. Add 1-2 Tablespoons to the cooking apples. (depends how sweet your apples are to start with)
  • Cook til the apples are soft. Stir occasionally.
  • Once the mixture has cooled enough to handle, transfer it to a blender.
  • Place the lid on top and cover the lid with a dish towel.
  • Hit the button to blend. In minutes you will have the best applesauce ever.

If you make it in the crock pot, you reduce the water to 1 cup.  If you do it on the stove top, there is enough steam leaving your pot that you don’t need to do this step.

Enjoy it as is or as a topping to oatmeal, pork chops, pancakes, potato pancakes, or waffles. I also like to cut french toast into sticks and use the apple sauce as a dip. Enjoy.

TMT- Good science moment to teach about Oxidation. We used a barrier to prevent oxidation. Lemon juice and honey are other barriers to try. Apples can be graphed, written about, life cycle of an apple tree to explain the 4 seasons, read about John Chapman and why he greatly helped pioneer families stay healthy. Weigh things using the weight of apples to balance it. taste different apples and use descriptive adjectives to tell about the flavor. Graph which apple flavor you liked best. Document the cost of an apple in the course of American history.

Toasted Pumpkin Seeds

Hardware- fry pan, wooden spoon, plate

Software- clean dry shell on pumpkin seeds, salt, canola oil, other option of seasoning… olive oil, garlic salt,

Heat up a fry pan on med heat, pour in some oil, let the oil heat up, add the seeds. It is very important that the seeds be dry otherwise the water will pop in the oil and you could get burned. Using the wooden spoon stir the seeds around. When the seeds start to get golden brown sprinkle in the salt and stir around to coat all the seeds. Let them get to a toasty brown. They should be dry so they don’t spoil when in a bag. Slide them out onto a plate and let them cool. Once they are cool, you can eat them as is or use them in the trail mix. They taste like nutty popcorn. They also make a great garnish for pumpkin/butternut squash soup.

Reindeer Crunch

Due to potential allergies, the kid version is the basic one. It is also the version I make to keep in the car. If you have something like this in the car or your purse, you will be armed with a healthy snack. If you know there are no chocolate, nut, dairy allergies, make the basic and include the optional add ins list.

Hardware- a big mixing bowl, measuring cups, containers to put store it, wooden spoon

Software- 1/4 C pretzels, 1/8 C raisins, 1/8 C dried cranberries, 1/2 C unbuttered popcorn, 1/8 C toasted pumpkin seeds, 1/4 C cheerios, 1/4 C wheat chex,

In a large bowl add all the ingredients and give it a mix with the wooden spoon.

Optional Add in.. 1/8 C chocolate chips, 1/4 C raw unsalted almonds, 1/8 C yogurt covered raisins, 1/4 C granola, 1/8 C sunflower seeds

I hope you have enjoyed the demo and feel confident about trying these recipes. To see more recipes check out my kids cooking blog

I can be reached via email at

You can find me at the La Canada Flintridge Community Center teaching my cooking classes. Young Cooks and Great Books. My next class is a Gingerbread house workshop on Dec 3. To enroll for my class go to

I am also available to teach at boy scout, girl scout meetings and at birthday parties.


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