“When i was a little girl, i wished chocolate grew on trees.”
As a bright-eyed and bushy-tailed entrepreneur, studying and researching chocolate before opening my own Belgian chocolate shop at the ripe young age of 26- i learned that my childhood wish came true.
The wish that i had hoped with all my heart as a little girl while planting my chocolate sucker into the wet soil as i was losing the last of the days light.
Chocolate really does grown on trees!
The bean grows in pods on the branches of the Theobroma Cacoa tree in the rain forests bordering the equator.
And i couldn’t wait to teach this in a food education and cooking demonstration class at Whole Foods because i believe that children need to learn and would want to be taught that the food they eat is directly related to the health of their bodies. Because if you don’t take care of your body, where will you live? And i want them to see the connection we have with nature.
I asked my daughters to help me make dark chocolate pudding using five ingredients for 25 people.
I explained to the children and their parents how we go from cocoa bean to factory.
Interested in teaching a food education class for children? My advice is to choose a topic that would interest kids. Then ask yourself, what knowledge do you want them to come away with?
I wanted to teach them that not all chocolate is created equal- ideally 72% dark chocolate or greater is good for your heart and brain. But white chocolate is not even chocolate at all! It has no cocoa liquor and has lots of added sugar. I also thought they would find the images of the rainforest jungle interesting, and would love a free sample of the good stuff or as it’s better known as…
“the food of the gods.”
Teachable moments like this has given them the “power of knowledge” as a secret weapon when faced with “food pitfalls.”
Last Sunday in church, when they served four large platters of cheap doughnuts like they do EVERY week, both of my girls said, “Mom, you HAVE to do something about these doughnuts! Can’t you ask them to bring bagels and fruit?”
Amy Wambold is a writer for her blog, http://www.junkfoodjournal.com which focuses on ditching the junk when it comes to entertaining kids and incorporate “real food” instead. She also urges parents to monitor their children’s weekly sugar consumption. Amy is a Scottsdale Ambassador for the Jamie Oliver Food Revolution Community- an appointed volunteer position to help raise awareness of food education within the community and to keep cooking skills alive.