Little Spoons Cafe

Culinary Mentorship for Kids in the Kitchen

5-day cooking camps
for children ages 8-12.

Kids in the Kitchen.
Small Influences.
Big Effects.

Culinary Mentorship for Kids in the Kitchen

5-day cooking camps for children ages 8-12.
Kids in the Kitchen. Small Influences. Big Effects.

Key Ingredients of the Program

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Nourishing

I work with seasonal, local, pesticide-free foods and wean children away from refined sugars and processed foods. Recipes are prepared to avoid allergies and to respect safety for all.

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Layered

This is not kiddie food. We’re in the kitchen to expand our palates by learning how to build taste from nature’s bounty, following two complete recipes each day. Palates come here to grow!

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Taste-centric

Taste: the first frontier! What goes through the boundaries of our lips is primal and primary. So let’s learn what goes into flavor so we can expand our choices with variety and gusto.

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Teamwork

Cooking together fosters social emotional learning and the value of cooperation. This camp teaches kids to respect differences in tastes and traditions, supporting freedom within structure.

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Confidence

Smelling, touching, tasting, chopping, stirring, and sauteeing, we learn HANDS ON about who we are and why we matter through the art of cooking healthy gourmet food. Cooking is self-care.

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Gourmet

Let’s not confuse healthy with medicinal flavors. Learning the elements of taste, we learn to combine wholesome ingredients to delight the tongue, body, and spirit, one individual at a time.

A few of our made-from-scratch recipes.

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Pesto Panini with Prosciutto

We make the pesto, roast the eggplant, peppers, and zucchini, and press!

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Chocolate Chip Seed Cookies

A delicious protein powerhouse that brings seeds to life - adults love these too.

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Banana Bread Muffins

Luscious and velvety, they awaken the senses with vanilla and nutmeg.

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Asian Chicken Salad

We make the pesto, roast the eggplant, peppers, and zucchini, and press!

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Toasted Almond Granola

Low sugar, with clarified butter, coconut, currants, and dried cherries.

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Basil Mint Fruit Salad

A bright and tart way to learn cutting techniques and flavor balance.

A Visual Taste.

Watch an overview of Little Spoons Café.

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Core Values

Age groups are mixed, and I guide the older students to mentor and support the wonder of the younger ones.


Man cannot discover new oceans unless he has the courage to lose sight of the shore.
Andre Gide

You’ve got Questions?

Do the kids eat during camp?

They sure do. From smelling and tasting ingredients in the morning to relishing the wholesome gourmet results at lunchtime.

What’s the child to adult ratio?

I work with up to 14 campers. There are two culinary assistants plus myself to make sure each child is supported in practicing skills as well as learning key teammate skills for team recipes. So, it’s 14 to 3!

Can parents and caretakers taste our goodies?

Of course! They’re welcome to show up 15 minutes before camp ends when we always have extras, on top of what you’ll take home. It’s a nice way to experience the satisfaction of cooking for others and putting smiles on their faces.

How do I register?

Just scroll down to the registration page. If registration is not yet open, you can email Chef Eric directly and he’ll put you on a Pre-Registration list.

What’s the age range?

Ages 8 to 12. Sometimes Chef Eric will let in an eager 7-year-old with some kitchen experience. Just ask him.

Who is Chef Eric?

Eric Pomert has been teaching cooking camps since he created Little Spoons Café in 2008. Eric grew up in a French family and has been cooking since the age of 7. He received his BA in Biology and French from Columbia University and studied acting and theater at the American Academy of Dramatic Arts in New York. He completed training as a Certified Natural Chef at Bauman College in Berkeley, CA. Eric began teaching cooking classes for children and their parents while he was training at Bauman.

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Child development is a key piece in Eric’s program. He has over 25 years’ experience mentoring and tutoring youths from 6 to 18, including volunteering and counseling with Project Happy and the 52nd Street Project, both in Manhattan. He completed foundation training in the Montessori Method to support kids in experiencing freedom in a structured environment. His goal is to nourish students with self-esteem and delicious food. One of his dreams is to step in where Fred Rogers (Mr. Rogers’ Neighborhood) left off and produce a gentle tv cooking program for kids and parents.

How do you handle allergies?

The curriculum for each camp is set in advance, and cannot be changed from day to day once the camp begins. The camps are peanut free, but nuts, dairy, meat, and a variety of fruits and vegetables are used throughout the 5 days of camp to develop new tastes for under-appreciated ingredients with excellent nutritional values.

If your child has an allergy, dietary restriction, or health condition that requires them to abstain from any physical contact with any ingredients in the categories mentioned above, please do not enroll them in this camp. This includes the possibility that your child’s allergy is so severe that he/she cannot be in the room or near others, touch utensils or cookware that may have come in contact with the allergen. In such cases, we are unable to take the necessary precautions to provide your child with the utmost safety.

If your child CAN safely tolerate being around allergens in the kitchen, then we can usually make portions of the recipes without the allergens so they can enjoy food they have prepared in camp. Children who abstain from meat will not have to handle meat and, when possible, will make portions for themselves that are meat-free.

Where did the name Little Spoons Café come from?

I was sitting with a group of friends imagining a group of kids in kitchen mixing batter with elegant wooden little spoons. And there it was!

Can my child repeat camp?

Yes, many have come back 4 years in a row.


Some also take 2 camps in one summer. Just check with Chef Eric before registering to see if he’s using a different recipe set.


Some kids have taken 2 weeks with the same recipes and enjoyed going deeper through practice.

How many recipes will we make?

We do 2 recipes per day, from scratch.

Do we get the recipes?

Every night, the next day’s recipes (and some photos) are emailed to your home. When the camp is over, Chef Eric will send you a pdf cookbook of all the camp’s recipes as well as some key lessons from the week.

Can I volunteer as a Counselor-in-Training (CIT)?

Yep. We’ve had MANY children who got too old for camp join us as junior CIT’s. Just ask the director of the recreation center where the camp is held. You can email Chef Eric if you need help finding out who that is.

What if I don’t like a recipe?

No big deal. You’re be learning ways to smell and taste all week. Many kids find they like a recipe they didn’t think they’d like. Just watch the this video. You can also see the fun side of experiencing strong tastes below!

Schedule/Register for Camp

Piedmont Recreation Dept.

June 20-24
9:00am - 12:00pm
camp #163160

registration

3 spaces open

Piedmont Recreation Dept.

June 27-July 1
9:00am - 12:00pm
camp #163161

registration

SOLD OUT
0 spaces open

Piedmont Recreation Dept.

July 25-29
9:00am - 12:00pm
camp #163162

registration

12 spaces open

Piedmont Recreation Dept.

Aug. 1-5
9:00am - 12:00pm
camp #163163

registration

10 spaces open

Piedmont Recreation Dept.

Aug. 8-12
9:00am - 12:00pm
camp #163164

registration

10 spaces open
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Camps sell out every year, so please sign up early.

A Letter to YOU.

Hello Cook!

I want to share what I love about cooking with you.

Imagine you’re in a playground filled with games. A blue seesaw there. A big set of red swings. Can you see the green bench to rest on? Right near the swings, there’s a set of monkey bars to grab your way across. Don’t forget that shiny long slide.

You may not play on all of these things, but as you practice on some of them, you’ll get good at using more of the games that you try.

Guess what? Tasting and cooking food works like trying games in the playground. It’s an adventure in which you try new foods. Yep - you have to be brave. And I’m happy to help you practice bravery.

This is how you learn to cook: you try new ingredients and learn about what tastes good to YOU. I am really excited about going on this adventure with you in the kitchen!

Chef Eric

Reviews

Contact

Have a question? Email Chef Eric.

Stay informed about upcoming camps
with the Little Spoons Café newsletter.