Family cookbook competition puts literacy on the menu in Stoke-on-Trent

09 Feb 2018
Bradford Family Cookbook

Families across Stoke-on-Trent are invited to share their favourite recipes for the chance to see them published in the Stoke Family Cookbook.

The new competition celebrates the literacy-boosting benefits of families cooking, talking about food and sharing mealtimes together. It has been launched as part of the Stoke Reads campaign, which is led by the National Literacy Trust and Stoke-on-Trent City Council, in partnership with the City Learning Trust. 

Local children are encouraged to write their favourite family recipe and submit it with a picture of the dish and details of why it is so special to them. The recipes could include meals that have been passed down through generations, or a new dish the family has created together. 50 winning recipes will be chosen to be published in the cookbook later this year. 

National Literacy Trust research shows that children and young people who sit down to eat dinner and talk with their family are more confident communicators than those who do not . An interest in food can also be a great way to engage reluctant readers and writers in choosing recipes, writing shopping lists, and following instructions to produce a meal that can be shared and enjoyed with family.

Local sports stars and reading ambassadors will also be invited to share their favourite dishes. 

Jason Vit, Head of National Literacy Trust Hubs says: “Stoke-on-Trent is famous for many iconic dishes and we know that local people are passionate about food. We hope this competition will inspire more families to talk about their favourite meals and cook together, which we know can have an important impact on children’s literacy skills. We can’t wait to see the recipes, which I’m sure will inspire even more families when they are published in the Stoke Family Cookbook!” 

Councillor Janine Bridges, Stoke-on-Trent City Council cabinet member for education and economy, said: “Cooking and reading are two passions of mine and it is wonderful that they have been combined into a very tasty competition! We are serious about driving up literacy levels in young people, to equip them with the skills that will help them to thrive throughout their lives. Fun and engaging activities like this help to make reading enjoyable for the whole family, and I encourage people to submit their recipes swiftly. I will certainly be submitting my favourite recipe and hope it is good enough to get into the cookbook!”

To submit a recipe, email it with a photo and a short description of why your family likes it to stoke@literacytrust.org.uk or post it to: Stoke Family Cookbook, National Literacy Trust, 68 South Lambeth Road, London, SW8 1RL. 

The competition closes on Friday 23 March 2018.