Summer is the time for road trips and family vacations. Some of our friends are traveling all over the world and I can’t help but feel jealous when I see their beach photos or shots of exotic landscapes. My kids enjoy traveling as much as I do, so when we can’t hop in the car or a plane, we travel via food. Cooking food from different cuisines and countries is a fun and hands on way to learning about other cultures. Why not read some books for inspiration?
The folks at Tuttle Publishing sent me some fun books about food from Asian, plus I’ve added a few I’ve discovered. (All links below are affiliate links.)
Are you ready to travel and eat around the world with these children’s books about food around the world?
When our box of books arrived, the first one Sophia grabbed was Fun with Asian Food: A Kids’ Cookbook by Mirijke Den Ouden and Devagi Sanmugam (Tuttle). After checking out all recipes, she settled on making Indian Fruit Lassi. Each recipe is easy to read with hand drawn illustrations for each step, making it perfect for even little kids to “read.” Both kids helped to make our strawberry lassis. We froze the extra and made lassi popsicles, which were a hit! The kids and I are looking forward to making the other recipes in the book. The cookbook contains recipes from India, China, Japan, Thailand, Vietnam, Bali, Korea, Singapore, Malaysia and Philippines.
Everybody Eats Lunch by Cricket Azima (Glitterati Inc) is an interactive board book that shows what other kids around the world eat for lunch. Learn what time lunch is eaten and what it’s called in different languages. There’s removeable pieces that explain the different foods. It’s super cute! I wish I’d seen this when my kids were younger.
Let’s Eat!/A Comer! (My Family: Mi Familia) by Pat Mora (Rayo) is a Spanish/English bilingual book that will introduce your kids to Mexican foods and what their Spanish names. This is a fun book to read if you want to start a Taco Tuesday tradition with your family. A great book for preschoolers.
Hot, Hot Roti for Dada-ji by F. Zia and Ken Min (Lee & Low) deserve another mention because I love reading this book out loud. It’s a fun read and shows how traditional food is incorporated into American life. Plus Dada-ji is pretty awesome!
Ok, so Louisiana isn’t really international but the cuisine there is a melting pot of many different cultures–just like the people who live there. Gator Gumbo: A Spicy-Hot Tale by Candace Fleming (Farrar, Straus, and Giroux) is a Cajun take on the classic The Little Red Hen. After you’re done reading it, you might be inspired to make your own gumbo.
Travel to Morocco with The Butter Man by Elizabeth Alalou (Charlesbridge) as Nora’s father tells her about his childhood. While the mouthwatering pot of couscous simmers, Nora learns about her grandfather’s patience and perseverance as he works to bring food to his family during a famine.
If your kids are squeamish about trying new foods, read them Do Mice Eat Rice? by Al Write and Roger Clarke (Tuttle). Told in rhyme with hilarious illustrations, this book wonders how different animals would react when they try new foods.