Do’s & Don’ts in the Kitchen
Cooking is lots of fun, but a kitchen is also a place where you have to be very careful so you won’t hurt yourself or others.
When I cook with Sven and the little Chefs, I always get in trouble because I have so much fun. Sometimes I get too excited when I see chocolate, haha!
Sven taught me a few things that are VERY important when you cook. He always says “safety first!” Please read them together with your parents so you all know how to avoid accidents in the kitchen. Cooking should be fun and without injuries or accidents.
- ALWAYS have an adult with you when you cook, use knives or use electric machines.
- When you cook with a frying pan on the stove, ALWAYS turn the panhandle AWAY from you to the side.
This avoids having you accidentally brush up against the pan, knocking it over and burning yourself.
- If you have long hair, ALWAYS put it into a ponytail.
Long hair can get caught in kitchen machines. And you don’t want your hair in your food.
- When you work with electrical devices like a mixer or blender, ALWAYS unplug it when you are done using it.
You don’t want to accidentally turn the machine on OR getting it wet while it’s plugged in. Also, make sure to ALWAYS roll-up the electrical cord right so you won’t trip or fall over it. If the cable looks broken or it is loosely attached to the machine don’t use it and tell your parents.
- ALWAYS wash your hands before you start cooking.
We are exposed to germs and bacteria wherever we are, and you don’t want to touch your food with dirty hands. It is good to wash your hands multiple times while you cook.
- ALWAYS read the recipe from beginning to end before you start cooking.
By doing so you understand the cooking or baking process, what ingredients you will need and if there are special instructions of which to be aware. If there is anything you do not understand, ask an adult.
- When you cook on the stove, ALWAYS turn off the burners immediately when you are done cooking.
- When you spill something, ALWAYS clean it up right away so you don’t slip in it.
Also, please NO toys on the kitchen floor. You could trip over them and hurt yourself.
- When you use a knife, ALWAYS use a cutting board.
It makes cutting much easier and protects the counter top. Make sure the cutting board is clean and has a non-slip surface underneath. Keep knives and hands clean. Slippery or sticky hand and knives could be a recipe for disaster!
- NEVER put a knife on its back.
You could accidentally lean on it and cut yourself. Every knife is designed differently. When you buy knives make sure that they don’t have a flat back on which they could rest. It is best to remove your knife from the cooking area when you are done cutting.
- NEVER put knives into the sink with soapy water.
I know we said “keep knives clean,” but because you cannot see the knife in soapy water you could accidentally cut yourself by putting your hands in the water. Wash and dry the knife separately keeping the sharp edge away from you.
- NEVER try to catch a falling knife.
It’s ok if it falls onto the floor. Just pick it up and clean it. NEVER reach for it when it drops; you could cut yourself.
- NEVER put an electrical device (i.e. mixer, blender) near a sink or any other water source.
Water and electricity don’t mix and you could get hurt very badly. Please ONLY handle them when an adult is with you.
- When you use cooking spray (i.e. PAM) to cook, NEVER spray directly into the flame OR keep the spray can near the stove.
These cans contain a lot of gas which could catch fire. Therefore, always move the pan away from the stove BEFORE you spray it.
- NEVER put your hands on the stove or inside the oven to see if it is hot.
Certain stove tops appear to be cold even though they were used minutes ago. You can burn yourself badly.
- NEVER cook without an apron.
Aprons look fun with all sorts of colors and funny things on them, but more importantly they protect you from hot water or food spills. They keep your chef jackets neat and tight.
- NEVER run in the kitchen.
Food Fights are so much fun, but Sven always says: “A kitchen is NOT a playground.” I know he is right. When you chase your best friend through the kitchen, a tiny oil spill is enough to have him or her fall and hurt themselves.
- NEVER leave the kitchen with pots or pans cooking on the stove.
Keep an eye on what you cook so nothing starts to boil over or burn. Never leave cooking food unattended.
- If you are trying to reach something, but you aren’t tall enough, NEVER climb onto the kitchen counter or stove top to reach it.
The counter could be slippery and the stove-top could still be hot from cooking.
Ask a taller person to help you.
- If your toast is stuck in the toaster, NEVER use a fork or metal knife to get it.
If this happens, unplug the toaster and turn it over so the toast will fall out.
- NEVER try to put out an oil/grease fire with water.
Hot oil is hotter than water and it could splash at you. Keep salt or baking powder nearby to suffocate the flames. And ALWAYS have an adult with you when you cook on the stove!
That was a lot of stuff, I know. Don’t worry, cooking still is lots of fun, but please always pay great attention to your safety!