Picks and Pans Review: Kids Cooking

updated 11/16/1987 AT 01:00 AM EST

originally published 11/16/1987 AT 01:00 AM EST

Aimed at 8-to 12-year-olds, this eight-lesson tape includes plenty of basic advice, stressing safety and cleanliness. Host Steve Bloome, an actor who was once a professional cook, goes through such recipes as tuna confetti casserole (with peas and cornflakes) and peanut-lovers' bread with a series of guest cooks, ages 11 and 12. His relentless chatter and palsy-walsy good spirits are wearing. At one point he asks a guest if he wants his sandwich cut in triangles or rectangles. "Triangles," the boy says, and Bloome exclaims, "Triangles! Good choice!" More objectionable, however, is the fact that this tape was produced by Kraft, a company that specializes in foods, particularly processed dairy products, and the lessons sometimes seem like commercials. At least one of Kraft's products is prominently displayed at the beginning of each lesson. So we get generic mushroom soup, but the margarine is you-know-whose. The undercurrent of manipulation of children is unsettling, especially in an otherwise worthwhile production. (Kraft, $14.95)

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