Recipes from around the world
By Julie Matuszewski; photo courtesy of Leana Kerr
Hungary, a landlocked country in central Europe, is known for its big flavor cuisine. Kinderpunsch or “children’s punch” is an aromatic concoction of herbal tea, fruit juices and bold spices. During the Christmas holiday, this warm beverage serves just the right punch of flavor, making it a holiday favorite drink and tradition in Hungary. During a recent “Recipes Around the World” unit, DCS Montessori (DCSM) lower elementary students traveled to Hungary through books and research. They had the opportunity to learn about this cultural cuisine and experience the recipe firsthand.
Teachers Leana Kerr and Emily Montague shared that the main objective of teaching this unit is to provide multi-cultural experiences for students. Students have an opportunity to prepare and taste cuisines of the world, introducing new tastes and practical life skills. Additionally, students explore the diverse backgrounds of some of their fellow DCSM students.
First grader Paxton Moore shared his Hungarian heritage with classmates, telling the history of kinderpunsch, sharing his family tree, and more importantly a multigeneration family cookie recipe. Using a unique Hungarian cookie press, the recipe has baked its way into the hands of fortunate recipients over the years.
Using ingredients of apple cider, cherry juice and pairing them with spices of cinnamon, cloves and star anise, students incorporated life lessons by preparing their cooking environment. They measured ingredients, assembled spiced tea bags and brewed their kinderpunsch.
Through the love of learning, the goal of this unit, along with other challenging class segments, is to prepare students to be global citizens.
Student James Hershman said he enjoyed the tea and cookies, but his favorite part of the segment was being able to cook the kinderpunsch in the classroom.