Green Princess Cookbook: Sweets and Treats to Save the Planet (Tiara Optional)

Green Princess cookbook

Photo credit: Gibbs Smith

Blame it on Disney but every pint-size ingenue I know dreams of becoming a beautiful princess (all the better to sashay across the ballroom in a big, poofy dress, of course). I've never been much of a girly-girl myself—before the onslaught of rose-colored hand-me-downs, I resisted dressing my daughter in pink—but even I was not immune to the sparkly charms of Green Princess Cookbook: Sweets and Treats to Save the Planet by Barbara Beery.

A primer for teaching kids (mostly of the feminine persuasion) how to whip up good green fare, Green Princess Cookbook is jam-packed with planet-friendly nosh that stresses the importance of organic and local ingredients. A handy glossary in the front of the book helpfully defines terms like "100-mile diet" and "Community Supported Agriculture" for budding chefs, while Green Cuisine Tips peppered throughout the pages offer suggestions on energy-saving baking (keep the oven door shut, no peeking; bake smaller items in a toaster oven) and green dishwashing (use eco-friendly soap; use leftover dishwater to water houseplants).

Divided into Drinks and Ice Cream, Dips and Chips, Bigger Bites, Breads and Spreads, and Sweets and Treats, the recipes sport whimsical monikers like "Solar-Power Strawberry Lemonade," "Off-the-Vine Zany Zucchini Muffins," "Cornbread in a Recycled Can," and "All You Need is Love Cookies."

Want to make homemade butter? Or a protein-rich edamame dip? It's all here beneath the pastel swirls and candy hearts. So maybe indulging in the occasional girlyness won't set the feminist movement back a couple of decades. In any case, my kid looks darn cute in pink.

Dig-That-Earth-Day Hummus

2 cups canned chickpeas, drained and rinsed
2 to 3 medium-size cooked organic beets, coarsely chopped
2 cloves garlic, peeled
3 tablespoons organic lemon juice
1/4 cup water
3 tablespoons tahini
1/2 tsp ground cumin
1/2 tsp paprika

1 teaspoon extra virgin olive oil
1 tablespoon minced organic flat-leaf parsley

Place chickpeas and beets in food processor along with the garlic, lemon juice, and water; process about 1 minute. Add more water if needed to form a smooth and creamy consistency.

Add tahini, cumin, and paprika and blend another 30 seconds to combine.

Serve immediately or store covered in the refrigerator up to 3 days. To serve, place in a shallow dish and garnish with a drizzle of olive oil and minced parsley. Serve with plenty of whole grain bread or pita bread.

More eco-friendly children's books
The Barefoot Book of Earth Tales
"Saved By the Well" Teaches Schoolkids About World Water Crisis
Chapter One Organics, The Green Eaters
George Saves the World: New Green Books for Kids
Children's Book "Planet Earth Gets Well"
Knut: A Great Book for Kids
10 Things I Can Do to Help My World a Great Book for Kids
Book Review: How We Know What We Know About Our Changing Climate
New Biodiesel Book for Kids
Daniel and His Electric Car, Children's Storybook from the DoE
Book Review: Taking the EcoSeekers Pledge To Explore A Land Of Curiosities

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