6-Year-Old Salad Chef

You're never too young to help in the kitchen.

I remember my husband and I at a pre-Thanksgiving pie baking evening in our kitchen with our granddaughter Corley--she had so much fun that she was inspired to dream big with an idea for starting her own pie-baking business...at 8 years of age! That's when dreams seem possible and when we (the adults) have so many opportunities to teach and reach young hearts and minds. We started with Corley seated on the counter next to a sink filled with collards back when she wasn't old enough to say, "collards." She helped my husband Dewey remove the tender leaves from the tough stalks and she learned when a tomato was ripe but firm-- ready for a salad--and when it was mushy and past using in anything except making a sauce.

When Corley's sister, Olivia, was about 6 ...and a half, she helped me prepare one of my favorite salads--a mixture of green vegetables, capers, Pecorino-Romano cheese and vinaigrette. She shaved the cheese and helped to make the dressing.