Luckily for my husband Ted and I, both of our kids have grown up enjoying cooking.
As with many kids, their interest in cooking started with baking. In the transformation of simple ingredients, such as butter, sugar, eggs and flour, into sweet, tender cakes, biscuits, pies and desserts there is not just that magical sense of alchemy, but generally a very delicious spoon from the mixing bowl to lick.
And as the goodies you yourself have helped to create emerge smelling oh-so-yummy from the oven, there is an incredibly gratifying feeling of success and pleasure. It’s such an easy route to feeling both useful and clever.
Though I was really busy with work when our kids were little, I was always happy to spend whatever time I had with them in the kitchen, even if they did invariably make the most godawful mess. And so each Mother’s Day they would insist that I stay in bed so they could bring me a special breakfast.
Their first attempts saw more than a few spills and disasters, and usually took hours to prepare, but finally there would be two bright little faces proud as punch at my bedside with a wobbly tray of breakfast decorated with fresh flowers. There would be little bowls and containers of fruit, jam and butter, toast, and a cup of rather cold tea. A few years on they had graduated to four-minute boiled eggs and toast soldiers, and by the time they were about 8 and 10 it was the full monty of bacon, scrambled eggs and tomatoes (that took them about two hours to get together!).
No matter how burnt the toast or overcooked the eggs I would eat them all up with relish – there is nothing more discouraging to an up-and-coming cook than having your efforts rejected or criticised. If you're looking for a fun breakfast to make for your mum (or have made for you) this Mother's Day, try my Banana Pancakes.
And if you feel like Mum deserves the evening off as well, my Easy Roast Chicken is simple enough for older kids to cook, with a little adult guidance, of course. Just tumble a few peeled potatoes into the baking dish when you pop the chicken in the oven, toss together a quick salad and you've got a dinner that will make Mum's day.
To celebrate Mother's Day I've got five copies of Lullaby: The International Love Language of Babies to give away. This lovely CD features pianist Carl Doy and members of the New Zealand Symphony Orchestra playing lullabies from around the world. Just tell us why you, your mum or a mum that you know deserves a treat. Competition closes Monday 20 May 2013. Click here to enter.