Five for Kids is a 5 part class that teaches basic nutrition and cooking skills to kids

Hi, My name is Tamra Davis and I am a chef, filmmaker and a mom.

I am here to teach you a program called Five For Kids. It’s a simple nutrition and cooking class that will teach you some valuable cooking skills, basic nutrition facts and at the end of each class you get to eat some really delicious food!

The first reference to nutrition was by Hippocrates about 2500 years ago when he said “Let food be thy medicine and let medicine be thy food”

I believe everything we put into our bodies has the ability to harm or heal us.

I started this program because I saw an incredible need in my community. All around me I read and see scary statistics about the present condition of young people.  1-3 children are reported to be obese. A child born after the year 2000 has a 1 in 3 chance of developing type 2 diabetes and if you look at the 5 top killers 4 of them are food related. Starting in 1970 Americans have been increasing their food intake by such an alarming rate that we are currently consuming more than 700 additional calories a day resulting in a 75% increase in obesity and obesity related diseases. The strain from the weight of all this is not only a burden on our health care but it is a burden on your own body.

What can we do? How can we take control of this? How can I inspire you to eat healthy and is it possible for me to teach you how make a bowl of spaghetti that is delicious and good for you?

I knew I had to do something to combat these alarming statistics when I hired a 16 year girl from my neighborhood to help me film something. She was a seemingly healthy girl but while she was assisting me she fell over and fainted. I asked her what was wrong and she told me she was on heart medication and had type 2 diabetes. When I started to ask her about what she ate she told me she eats only junk food. She said her parent’s work and so they do not cook at home, she eats only pre-made food and her normal breakfast consists of a bag of chips and a soda, sometimes she eats bacon in the cafeteria. I knew what the problem was. She was putting bad food into a perfectly good body!  She was also just recovering from a broken arm that she broke from simply carrying a bag of groceries. This happened because her bones were not developing properly.

I believe that if you are given the facts about why you need to eat a proper diet you will never let this happen to you.

Five for Kids is a program that will help teach you these facts and introduce you to many foods that you may have never tried before but I promise you, they will become some of your favorite things to eat.

Here’s a simple tip – Before you put something in your mouth ask yourself, what is this?

Can you identify or even pronounce the ingredients?

Does it come from a plant or was it made in a plant?


f you try to eat food as close to its origin as possible. You will immediately be on your way to a healthier way of eating. It actually is that easy

The first thing I want to teach you is the basic food pyramid.

I made it out of legos so you could really see how it works

If you think about what you eat in a day you should aspire to build a complete pyramid. The servings listed here are not just suggestions but requirements. That means that if you do not get the food in your body that your require you will not develop in the way you were designed to grow. But if you eat a healthy balanced diet you will be giving yourself the best advantage.

There are five food groups and each class in the Five program will focus on one of these groups.

The base of the food pyramid is Fruits and Vegetables. The USDA requirement for a young person is 4-5 servings a day. A serving is about the size of your palm.

Fruits and vegetables are filled with vitamins and minerals

Vitamins and minerals not only make you healthy and smart they also help to reduce inflammation in your body. Inflammation is the root of almost all diseases.

Here are the recipes that we will learn today that have Fruits and Vegetables as the main attraction

A Fruit Smoothie – Throw these main ingredients into your blender and start your day with a large portion of delicious fruits and a probiotic yogurt to help maintain a healthy digestive system.

Any Vegetable Soup – This soup can be made with almost any vegetable. You’ll learn how to sauté an onion, then boil a vegetable to make it soft enough to put in a blender with some broth and make a fantastic tasting soup.

Guacamole and pita chips – Avocados are filled with delicious oils that are good for you. You’ll learn how to start with a salsa and turn it into to a tasty guacamole that can be served when you have friends over or just want to have some for yourself. Also these pita chips are the bomb! Simple and inexpensive.

Fruit Crumble  – Take a fruit, chop it up and spread this delicious cookie like topping on and bake it. You will be the hero in your home if you make this for dessert or a special occasion.

Fried Bananas ala mode – You will learn the simple technique of “dredging” in flour and then frying, which creates a lovely crispy exterior and the banana when cooked releases it’s gooey sugars. You won’t believe it’s just a banana.

Are you hungry yet???

Wait! Before you start to cook I want you to

1. Make sure and read the entire recipe. From beginning to end.

2. Be very careful when you handle knives or if you are cooking with heat

3. Don’t be afraid to make mistakes. You may invent a whole new recipe

So grab your recipe, read it out loud all the way through then come up here and gather your ingredients and LET”S MAKE SOMETHING GOOD TO EAT!

I try and make a smoothie for my kids every morning. I find it a delicious way to get some fresh fruit into their diet. I change it up every day using different fruits, juices or sometimes I use milk instead of juice and add a little vanilla to make it a “milkshake”. I especially love to add a little chunk of ginger. Ginger has great medicinal qualities and I am sure it was helpful in keeping the kids cold free this whole winter. The other thing I love about making a smoothie is that I can make sure they are eating a banana a day. Banana’s are a great source of Magnesium, which is an essential mineral. I also have taken to adding a bit of Greek non-fat yogurt. Yogurt provides probiotics which will help make a healthy stomach environment, it is also a great source of Calcium.

This recipe for Vegetable Soup can be made with so many different vegetables. Depending upon what is in season, you can substitute Broccoli, Celery, Zucchini, Squash…go on and experiment!


Stay tuned for next week – Grains!!!!

Moving up in the pyramid we get to protein.  Knowing how to cook a good protein is a very important skill. Whether you become the master at the grill or know how to make the most of the protein you have it’s great to have this knowledge.  I wanted to introduce the kids to new protein’s such as Tofu, Tempeh and Quinoa. All of which are remarkable and budget friendly substitutes for Animal Proteins.  I also wanted to teach them how to fry a fish. This same skill can be applied to chicken or meat.

In talking with the kids about protein it’s also very important to mention food safety. It is becoming more and more important for the average home cook to take food safety into their own hands. It has been said that the future packaging of food will just have a warning sticker making it your responsibility to follow the guidelines on food safety. Here are some basics… a phrase I say often now is “When in doubt, throw it out.”

The three main goals in food safety

Preparation –  Keep your food, kitchen and hands clean while preparing raw meat.

Handling – Wash your hands throughly before and after handling meat (poop on the hands or from farm is still the biggest cause of spreading a food borne illness)

Storing – Store your food carefully. Meat left out for more than 2 hours can spoil. (this includes meat, eggs and cheese in kids lunch boxes)

So now finally to all the yummy things we cooked in the protein class!!!!! The kids not only made all these things themselves, everything turned out delicious and they loved it. All the kids tried something new.

Here is the menu

Refried Beans and an Amazing Chipotle Sauce

Quinoa with Tomato and Peas and Sprinkled with Parmesan Cheese

Baked Fish Tacos

Filet of Sole in a Lemon Caper Sauce

Tofu Scramble


This week our focus was on Grains


Join us for next week when we move up the food pyramid to PROTEIN

making polenta aka grits


apple cake

chopping cilantro

cooking with Tamra

eating apple cake

making tomato sauce

reading recipe

chopping garlic

apple cake

taking out of oven