Please welcome author Patricia Tanumihardja with her picture book list about sharing the joy of cooking with family and loved ones. Her debut picture book is Ramen for Everyone!
Who doesn’t love ramen? It’s a staple food for everyone including college students! Where I live in Newton, MA, there is a traditional ramen restaurant across the street in Newton Centre from a fusion ramen place. There is also a Vietnamese Pho restaurant near them.
I also love the Taiwanese Beef Noodle soup in Newtonville at Grandma’s Kitchen. There’s another version of Taiwanese Beef Noodle soup at Jean and Lee Kitchen in Newton Upper Falls. I’m happy there are so many great options to eat noodle soup where I live!
I also make ramen at home, using a frozen kit and adding in ingredients purchased from my Japanese supermarket in Brookline, MA. I haven’t ever made ramen from scratch, but Hiro, in Ramen for Everyone, loves ramen so much, he’s going to make the perfect bowl himself!
Ramen for Everyone by Patricia Tanumihardja, illustrated by Shiho Pate
Hiro turned 7 years old and he wants to make the perfect ramen for his parents and siblings using the recipe passed down from his grandfather to his father to him. It’s not easy making ramen from scratch. First, you need to make a flavor-packed broth. Then, you have to make the noodles, from scratch! Each topping also needs to be carefully cooked to perfection. Hiro struggles to make the perfect ramen on his first attempt. Disappointed with his toppings, he tosses them in the trash. But with his father’s advice, he uses his creativity to make the perfect bowl of ramen, each unique, for his family.
I personally would not attempt to make ramen from scratch so hats off to Hiro for his courageous attempt! Ramen is the one Japanese food that is more freeform and I’m glad that this is incorporated into the story. [picture book, ages 4 and up]
We are giving away two copies of Ramen for Everyone. To enter, please fill out the Rafflecopter at the bottom.
Picture Books Sharing the Joy of Cooking with Family and Loved Ones
A Pizza With Everything On It by Kyle Scheele, illustrated by Andy J. Pizza
In this riotously fun book, a boy and his dad make pizza together for dinner. The boy wants a pizza with EVERYTHING on it and so they pile on the toppings—from four kinds of cheeses to an entire turkey to a tree house. You get the picture! Then something terrible happens and they fall into a swirling pizza vortex. An unexpected twist to the usual food story filled with hijinks only a father-and-son team could concoct. [picture book, ages 4 and up]
Amy Wu and the Perfect Bao by Kat Zhang, illustrated by Charlene Chua
Amy Wu loves to make bao with her family and knows it takes skill to make the bao taste and look delicious. Dad, mom, and grandma all make perfect bao buns but Amy’s bao is too empty, too fat, or has holes. What is she doing wrong? Then, she comes up with a clever idea that does help her make perfect baos! A charming multigenerational story with a spunky and smart protagonist whom everyone will love! [picture book, ages 4 and up]
Bilal Cooks Daal by Aisha Saeed, illustrated by Anoosha Syed
Six-year-old Bilal loves daal and wants to introduce his friends to his favorite dish. However, the slow-simmered lentil dish takes a long time to cook. As the day goes by, more and more friends and neighbors join in the wait, everyone anticipating the tasty dish. When the daal is finally ready, Bilal wonders if—and hopes that–everyone loves the dish as much as he does. A wonderful showcase for food as a way to bring a community together and share in each other’s family traditions, and the value of patience! [picture book, ages 4 and up]
Cora Cooks Pancit by Dorina K. Lazo Gilmore, illustrated by Kristi Valiant
Cora loves being in the kitchen, but as the littlest in the family, she always gets stuck with kid duty. One day, while her older sisters and brother are out, Cora finally gets the chance to do the grown-up tasks when she and Mama make pancit, her favorite noodle dish. Cora helps to shred the chicken, soak the noodles, and even gets to stir the noodles in the pot carefully as Mama supervises. A sweet story that celebrates the joy of mother and daughter cooking together as they share their Filipino heritage. [picture book, ages 4 and up]
Plátanos Are Love by Alyssa Reynoso-Morris, illustrated by Mariyah Rahman
While Esme shops for and cooks plantains with her abuela, she learns about her history and heritage. They make three different dishes made from the platanos—mangu, tostones, and maduros. With each recipe, Esme not only learns how to cook (a very important skill!) but also learns about her ancestors, the importance of plátanos as a staple food, and the love shared between family members. So much to revel in on so many levels, but the bilingual text woven seamlessly throughout is a plus! [picture book, ages 4 and up]
Soul Food Sunday by Winsome Bingham, illustrated by C.G. Esperanza
Every Sunday, a boy and his large extended family gather at Granny’s for a soul food meal. Now that he’s a big boy, instead of playing in the backyard, the boy helps Granny cook for the first time. Together, they grate different types of cheeses, clean a whole lot of greens, and prep the meat for the grill. While his Granny takes a nap, the grandson decides to make his own sweet contribution to Soul Food Sunday. Packed with rhythmic food-related words and onomatopoeia, a joyful story about family sharing time together and delicious food, and the passing down of traditions. [picture book, ages 4 and up]
Spicy Spicy Hot by Lenny Wen
Lintang is excited to meet her Indonesian grandmother, Nenek, and taste nenek’s delicious, mouthwatering sambal. But when she takes a bite, she finds out it’s SPICY! Her lips burn, her mouth feels like it’s on fire, and her taste buds are crying for help. However, Lintang is determined to beat the heat, connect with her Indonesian heritage, and find a sambal that she can eat. Author-illustrator Lenny Wen has created a treasure that’s funny and warmhearted–the expressions on Lintang’s face are priceless!– and I’m so thrilled there’s a picture book that reflects my own heritage. [picture book, ages 4 and up]
Ramen for Everyone 2 Book GIVEAWAY!
We are giving away two copies of Ramen for Everyone. To enter, please fill out the Rafflecopter below. We can only mail to U.S. and A.F.O. addresses.
Born in Jakarta, Indonesia, Patricia Tanumihardja was raised on turmeric fried chicken, crispy shrimp crackers, and savory noodles on the tropical island of Singapore. Pat’s Indonesian Chinese parents encouraged her appetite for both delicious food and good books. As an immigrant twice over, she’s brimming with stories to tell and hopes that children of every color and creed will see themselves reflected in books, whether hers or other #ownvoices authors. Today, Pat writes children’s books and cookbooks from her home in Northern Virginia where she lives with her husband and son. Don’t be shy to hit her up for some favorite recipes! You can find her on Twitter and Instagram: @ediblewords and online.
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- Starred review from School Library Journal
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