Every other year, my grandparents would come for Christmas. I went to school exactly one block away from my house. From school, you'd cross the street, walk to the end of the block and turn the corner. As I approached that corner I would be so excited hoping for a glimpse of their car parked in front of our house. Nana and I had a special Christmas ritual when she came; we'd make the bows for all the gifts. Since she and Grampy drove down from Cape Cod, they'd have wrapped the presents, but bows would have been smooshed on the journey. Nana and I would sit down with long strings of ribbon and she'd show me just how to make the first loop over my thumb, then each loop to the side growing in size until the bow was finished. We'd staple the middle and tape our handiwork to each gift. It was something special we always did, just the two of us. I didn't often cook with Nana. The treats at her house were usually made and waiting when I arrived, but I do remember making applesauce with her. Once you're old enough to be trusted around a stove, it's the perfect thing for a child to make, since other than the chopping and peeling, all the stirring, tasting and sweetening and spicing can be done by even the smallest of cooks. NANA'S APPLESAUCE
2 apples (although make as much as you want!!)
1 t lemon juice
1 T water
1 tsp sugar (although this you should change depending on how sweet your apples are and how you like your applesauce).
1/2 t cinnamon
Peel, core and chop your apples (this is the job an adult needs to do). Put them in a saucepan on the stove. Add the lemon juice and water and let the apples cook down until they are soft and mushy. Add the sugar and cinnamon, I wrote you how I like it, but this is a perfect experiment for beginning chefs to try adding a bit more of each until it's how they enjoy it. You can serve it homestyle or make it smoother by putting it through a food mill or mashing it with a potato masher.